The awards were presented by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) on December 14 at MARKETPLACE 2016, the Governor’s Conference on Minority Business Development, which was held at the Potawatomi Hotel and Conference Center in Milwaukee.
WEDC organized and hosted the conference in partnership with public and private organizations that support the development of diverse businesses.
The Outstanding Business Awards recognized businesses that show overall business excellence in sales, product, customer relations, employment and management. The Rising Star Awards were given to businesses operating less than five years that have demonstrated strong growth potential.
Awards were given to minority-owned business enterprises (MBE), women-owned business enterprises (WBE) and service-disabled veteran businesses (DVB).
The winners for Outstanding Large Business Award were:
- RAMS Contracting LTD of Lannon, which offers contracting services throughout southeastern Wisconsin, including commercial excavating, GPS-controlled site grading demolition, dump truck services and snow plowing services (MBE); and
- Share Corporation of Milwaukee, a nationwide manufacturer and distributor of more than 600 specialty chemicals and a distributor of hardware and welding supplies (WBE).
The winners of the Outstanding Small Business Awards were:
- M Squared Engineering LLC of Cedarburg, a full-service civil engineering and consulting firm with offices in Wisconsin and Illinois providing civil engineering services to government and private sector clients (MBE);
- The GEO Group Corp. of Madison, which offers translation, interpreting, desktop publishing, website localization, audio/video production and technical writing services (WBE); and
- Panacea Group LLC of Seymour, a veteran-owned business providing general contracting, design/build, new construction, renovation/remodeling and quad-axle dump truck hauling services (DVB).
The winners of the Rising Star Awards were:
- Maldonado and Morgan LLC of Milwaukee, which provides marketing, advertising, animation, branding, illustration, website design and development, video production, SEO/SEM, copywriting and public relations services (MBE); and
- Wisconsin Interstate Contracting LLC of Merrill, which provides erosion and sedimentation control, site stabilization and site restoration services (WBE).
WEDC received more than 100 nominations for businesses of all sizes and from a diverse range of industries.
More than 600 people attended the 35th annual MARKETPLACE, which is the premier statewide business capacity building conference of the year for minority, woman and veteran-owned businesses looking to do business with state, federal and local agencies as well as corporations.
The conference provided opportunities for businesses to meet with potential buyers, identify funding sources, and connect with business assistance resources while networking with other businesses.