/ Uniquely Wisconsin: Washington County - Part 2

Uniquely Wisconsin: Washington County - Part 2

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

There’s far more stories to hear from the local Wisconsinites of Washington County, who take pride in their community. From creating companies and careers to helping children and families, these are the people that make Washington County a special place. Join as we hear more from Jeff Szukalski–owner of Jeff’s Spirit on Main, Kreilkamp Trucking Company, and Foster Closet.

The Spirit of Community: Washington County's Jeff Szukalski 

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

Jeff Szukalski has been warmly welcoming people to Jeff’s Spirits on Main since 1998!

Not only has Jeff brought his passion for spirits, and service, to Washington County for 25 years, but he’s also given back immensely. As a supporter of many many charitable organizations, Jeff graciously helps to make his community a better place.

“He’s just a neighbor you always wished you had,” said Bink Steinbach, a local real estate agent and friend. Washington County Executive Josh Schoemann agrees, “Jeff is an icon here in West Bend and a great asset to Washington County.  We’re lucky to have him and he does so many things that people don’t know about and that’s the best thing about him. He doesn’t do it to be known or seen but does it to make a difference in people’s lives.”

Jeff’s Spirits on Main has provided jobs for the community while also maintaining the family-owned and operated charm. It’s a gem in Washington County that will be providing phenomenal service for many years to come.

Watch this Uniquely Wisconsin short here: 

Creating Wisconsin Careers: Kreilkamp Trucking

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

The history of Wisconsin is really the history of Wisconsin families. And Kreilkamp Trucking has been woven into the fabric of Washington County for almost 100 years.

This trucking company is more than an employer – they’re training their drivers with professional education before they hit the road. With an innovative eight-week bootcamp, they’re ensuring that they’re putting everyone’s safety first.

“The competition for drivers has elevated, it's much harder to put a good driver in that truck that's safe and is on time and does their job correctly,” said Tim Kreilkamp. “So we developed a program that would bring people in and we could train them. We felt for this program to be effective, people couldn't leave their families without an income for eight weeks, so we opted to put them on salary from day one.”

Emily Sheely, recruiting manager for Kreilkamp Trucking, stresses that it’s belief in their employees that is at the foundation of the company.  “Tim and I have a mutual passion for giving people opportunities. Because when you put all your trust in folks, they are going to do good by you. “

Watch this Uniquely Wisconsin short here: 

It Takes a Village: Washington County Foster Closet

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

The Foster Closet is an organization in Washington County that provides resources to children that are being placed in a foster care situation. Their mission is to serve the county’s youth and families by offering clothing and resources while providing support to the foster families and bringing awareness to our community. 

“Our biggest focus as foster parents should be with those kids, emotionally, physically, and not be worrying about the stuff they need,” said Koa Dautermann, co-founder of the Washington County Foster Closet.

Started by three foster moms in the county, they have a passion for foster care and giving back to the community. Since 2017, The Foster Closet has helped over 400 kids and foster families in the area. They want to continue providing support to those in need for years to come but can only do so with the ongoing support of Washington County.

The foster care system is a critical component in county human service systems and The Foster Closet helps to make difficult situations just a little bit easier for the foster parents and ultimately, kids in their care.

Watch this Uniquely Wisconsin short here: 

Prized in their community, Jeff Szukalski, Kreilkamp Trucking Company, and Foster Closet have all made and continue to make an influential and impactful difference in Washington County. Whether it’s forming companies, creating careers, or helping the youth, each individual has contributed in making Washington County unique and unlike the rest. 

*Narration provided by Wondervox.

From the team at Discover Wisconsin: We believe in making our content accessible to all, which is why we offer an audio version of our blog posts. By clicking the play button above, you can listen to our blogs!

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