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Wisconsin Connection Conference

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2025 Wisconsin Connection Conference

Tuesday, January 14, 2025 | Glacier Canyon Conference Center, Wisconsin Dells, WI

BLD’s Connection Conference is Wisconsin’s primary networking and educational conference for the retail lumber and building materials industry. This event is co-hosted by the Wisconsin Lumber Dealers Education Foundation Inc. (WLDEF). Attendees can expect targeted education sessions designed to address industry challenges and trends. It will also feature engaging networking events where professionals can come together to exchange knowledge, build relationships, and ultimately drive success in their businesses.

2024 Wisconsin Connection Conference Recap

The Wisconsin Connection Conference took place on March 21, 2024, at the Ho-Chunk Gaming Hotel in Baraboo, Wisconsin. Co-Hosted by BLD Connection and the Wisconsin Lumber Dealers Education Foundation, the conference offered a dynamic blend of networking opportunities and educational insights for the retail lumber and building materials industry.

Roundtable: The Next Gen Roundtable networking group kicked off the day, where attendees shared an open dialogue about today’s business challenges and opportunities.

Seminars: There was no shortage of enriching and engaging education provided at this year’s conference.

  • Federated Insurance reviewed essential areas to focus on to mitigate business losses.
  • Dena Cordova- Jack provided valuable insight on the changing leadership model and offered key strategies for effective communication.
  • Jeff Beals shared his sales expertise, guiding attendees on how to effectively engage cold prospects and close deals.

Customer Panel: Moderated by Brad Boycks, Director of the Wisconsin Builders Association, a panel discussion titled "What Customers are Looking for in Building Material Suppliers" featured insightful contributions from:

  • Brandon Bartow, Bartow Builders
  • Andy Selner, Alair Green Bay
  • Dawn McIntosh, CLE Consulting

Keynote Address by Matt Booth: The lunch session featured an inspiring keynote address by Matt Booth, whose presentation titled "Basically Incredible" emphasized the significance of mastering the fundamentals in achieving an extraordinary life.

Awards: Shane Schwingle of Pukall Lumber Company Inc. was honored with the "Dealer of the Year" award. Joining the LBM industry in 2014, Schwingle has a knack for recruiting talent and managing staff.

Additionally, Novo Building Products (represented by Tony Comarado) received the "Supporter of the Year" award. Novo has been a big supporter of the association, especially in Wisconsin.

Networking Reception: Attendees had the opportunity to forge meaningful connections during the Networking Reception, which featured games and prizes. Nate Ehlen was the lucky winner of the $100 Cash Prize, while Ted Grund of UFP Retail Solutions, Chris Hegeman of Bliffert Lumber, and Peder Anderson of Northern Crossarm clinched victory in the Corn Hole competition.

Board Member Update: Joe Hughes of GAF has been reappointed as an Associate Director for an additional two-year term.

Co-Host Sponsor
Wisconsin Lumber Dealers Education Foundation
Premium Sponsors
General Sponsors

For general event questions, reach out to: Connie Johnson, Director of Professional Development (763) 595-4045 or

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