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Moraine Park Presents 2022 Business Partner Awards

Business Partner Awardees

Moraine Park Technical College awarded its annual Business and Industry Partner Awards at a luncheon last week, April 26. All the nominees were invited to attend and celebrate the College’s valued partnerships of 2022.

The College’s Economic and Workforce Development (EWD) recognizes five partnership awards each year: Excellence in Partnership, Employer of the Year, Innovation, New Partner of the Year and Workforce Development Champion.

“The Business Partner Awards were created as a way to recognize and show our appreciation for the employers in our district,” JoAnn Hall, dean of economic and workforce development at Moraine Park, said. “It takes a village, and when you grow, we grow and our community grows. Thank you for being part of our village.”

Excellence in Partnership

The Excellence in Partnership award is given to an organization involved in several areas of the college including advisory committees, Foundation donations, Handshake, EWD contracts, and boot camp internships. The 2022 recipient is BCI Burke.

“BCI Burke is growing like crazy, and we are proud of our foundation here in Fond du Lac,” Brian Johnson, COO at BCI Burke, said. “Our partnerships, especially with Moraine Park, are essential for our workforce needs.”

BCI Burke is active in two Moraine Park advisory committees: IT Applications Developer and Interactive Media Design, contributing their industry knowledge to the growth of the College’s students and program curriculum. 

They are generous donors to the College’s AIR Center; annual Excellence Fund, which supports scholarships and new programs; and the Forming Alliances to Cultivate Talent (FACT) scholarship fund. BCI Burke also made an in-kind donation of bike racks, which can be seen near the Fond du Lac Campus main entrance.

Employer of the Year

The Employer of the Year award is given to an employer who has made a significant investment in their staff through a partnership with Moraine Park Technical College. The 2022 award recipient is Kreilkamp Trucking for the Wisconsin Regional Truck Driving Academy Partnership.


The Innovation Award is given to an organization that implemented an innovative solution to a workforce challenge. The 2022 award recipient is Whisker, for finding creative solutions to meet their workforce needs.

Whisker identified several instances of employees who were experiencing homelessness. Once they identified that this was a need, they also found ways to help these employees have access to much-needed resources such as showers via a voucher at the YMCA, food and housing.

“Whisker started with 50 employees two years ago, and now we are 450 and growing,” Tyler Soto, human resources director at Whisker, said. “The need for training is essential. Our partnership with Moraine Park has allowed us to continue operating on uniqueness and find creative solutions for our customers and employees.”

New Partner of the Year

The New Partner of the Year award is given to an organization that supports Moraine Park through contributions, sponsorships, or involvement for the first time. The 2022 award recipient is Karavan Trailers for partnering with the College for the first time in fall 2022.

Karavan began its MPTC partnership with frontline supervisory training to help increase the business’s productivity as well as increase supervisors’ confidence in themselves as leaders. Karavan requested that the training be offered in both English and Spanish–a first for MPTC–for a total of 64 hours of training.

“When I started at Karavan, I recognized really fast that we needed training, and after meeting with Moraine Park, I felt confident in our partnership,” Doug Clark, president at Karavan Trailers, said. “Six weeks after meeting, we rolled out a plan and they were able to offer our training in Spanish which has brought increased recognition that Karavan is committed to opportunities for those who may speak a different language, and those opportunities are available to people who work hard and show initiative.”

Workforce Development Champion

The Workforce Development Champion award is given to an individual focused on improving the skills and retention of personnel in the region and has positively impacted workforce issues around recruitment, training, and career development. The 2022 award recipient is Mark Lasky, CEO of Sadoff Iron and Metal.

Lasky has been a CEO speaker for the STRAT program sharing his leadership journey and philosophy. Sadoff identified an increase in retirements in leadership positions, so they partnered with MPTC to provide employees with leadership training. The investment in the leadership series and STRAT provided their employees the essential skills and techniques needed to lead teams.

Lasky also identified a gap in the maintenance department and partnered with MPTC on the Industrial Maintenance Boot Camp. They have been a long time partner on training and supporter of the college through philanthropic gifts. 

“Receiving this award is really an honor,” Lasky said. “Being able to recruit to this area is really important to us, and we are lucky to have an asset like Moraine Park in our community.”

Business Partner Awards Luncheon - FDL - April 2023

May 3rd, 2023by Emilie Wilson