West Bend Area Chamber presents awards
Eight people, organizations recognized at annual dinner

By JOE VANDELAARSCHOT - Daily News

Nov. 13, 2014

State Rep. Pat Strachota looks on while Executive Director Craig Farrell gives an update of the West Bend Area Chamber of Commerce during the West Bend Area Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner Awards banquet Wednesday night in West Bend. Strachota was honored during the event for her years of service in the state Assembly.
John Ehlke/Daily News 


WEST BEND - The West Bend Area Chamber of Commerce handed out awards to eight people and organizations Wednesday night during the group’s annual awards dinner.

Receiving awards were River Shores Chiropractic as the Small Employer of the Year. Affiliated Clinical Services and DACO Precision Tool were both named the Medium Employers of the Year. University of Wisconsin-Washington County was named the Large Employer of the Year. Family Promise of Washington County received the Community Agency of the Year award. West Bend Tap and Tavern was named the New Member of the Year. Amy Johnson was named the Volunteer of the Year and Jeff Szukalski was presented with the Director’s Award. “I’m speechless,” Szukalski said. “This is a fun community to be in and support. There are so many good people here.”

“Our Volunteer of the Year award for dedication to the chamber and the community goes to an amazing person,” Chamber Executive Director Craig Farrell said. “Her attitude toward her career with Cedar Community, her tenderness and understanding with residents and fellow employees, and her dedication to the community is astounding.”

Johnson said she was amazed to receive her award.

“We’ve lived in West Bend for five years and have really embraced the community,” Johnson said. “We love it here.”

Farrell, while presenting the Director’s Award, said Szukalski is “part of the fabric of our community. I can’t think of a more worthy recipient.”

River Shores Chiropractic opened in West Bend in 2007. Dr. Christi Wick said since the business joined the community they “have strived to give back to the community that we have enjoyed for the last seven years.” ACS is celebrating its 30th year in business. It started with three employees and has grown to 47. ACS is building a $1.4 million office facility in West Bend.

DACO Precision Tool also marked 30 years in business in March. In 1989, they built a 4,400-squarefoot facility which grew by three additions. DACO employs 50 people and plans to hire more soon.

“We truly love this community,” DACO co-founder Randy Weber said. “It gives us a great feeling of accomplishment to see where we were when we started 30 years ago and where we are today.”

In 1968, UW-WC’s student enrollment stood at 403. In 2013, it served 954 students.

Family Promise of Washington County has been serving the area for five years and started with $25,000 in resources. It now has $1 million.

West Bend Tap and Tavern opened in 2013 and immediately provided jobs for 30 part and full-time employees. The restaurant now serves over 1,000 guests per week.

Rep. Pat Strachota, R-West Bend, served as the evening’s honorary guest speaker. She was also honored for her service in the state Assembly to which she was first elected to in 2004. Strachota’s term ends in January after deciding not to seek re-election.