Colorful cast of characters
The 2016 40 Under 40 show their true colors
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Jeffrey Beckmann Jr.
J&K Security Solutions
You might say that Jeffrey Beckmann is loyal to the Corps — the U.S. Marine Corps, for which he served from 2002–2006 as an artilleryman and infantryman. The integrity, discipline, and attention to detail of that experience influences the sense of professionalism he exhibits today. Yet the people he wants to emulate aren’t military icons such as MacArthur and Schwarzkopf but business generals such as Buffet and Jobs.
Perhaps that’s why Beckmann is loyal to the community, too. The UW–Milwaukee graduate organized a charity golf tournament that in its first three years raised nearly $160,000 for Domestic Abuse Intervention Services. “Hands down the greatest professional accomplishment I’ve ever had,” he says.
Favorite color: Green. “In the Marine Corps we had a saying: ‘We’re all green.’ We’d have 120 Marines in our platoon that came from 120 different walks in life, but none of that mattered because we were all wearing the same green uniforms.”
Wrench Auto Service Inc.
Ben Beere somehow found a way to integrate two very different passions: agriculture and cars. When he was just 26 years old, he and a fraternity brother opened Wrench Auto Service, an independent auto repair shop in Middleton, and he’s especially proud that it took less than 10 years for the business hit $1 million in sales.
He credits Rick Genin of Genin’s Auto Care and Will Sparks of Terry’s Car Care for their mentorship. “They are always positive and honest about their thoughts and feedback, which is invaluable to a young business owner.” Beere hopes to own several Wrench Auto Service shops.
With two ag-related degrees from UW–Madison, Beere also remains active with Delta Theta Sigma Alumni Corp., a university-based organization helping young men and women further their secondary education in agriculture.
Favorite color: Navy blue. “It’s in the company logo and to me it represents integrity, strength, and professionalism.”
Vice President for Enrollment Management
As someone involved in the planning of the Edgewood College’s Community Scholars Program for students with academic potential and financial need, Christine Benedict’s proudest professional moment isn’t difficult to recall. The opportunity to inform one of the first recipients and hear her say the scholarship “will change my life and the life of my whole family” had a profound impact on her.
Then again, helping young people is a persistent theme in Benedict’s life. As a former board chair, she’s also proud to be part of the growth in Girls on the Run of Dane County, which seeks to inspire girls in grades 3–8 to achieve the goal of completing a 5K run and reach their potential in other ways.
Favorite color: Blue and yellow. “Blue is calming to me — thoughts of a cloudless sky and endless ocean. Yellow inspires joy — flowers in full bloom, sunshine, and warm, cozy fires.”
Jeannie Cullen Schultz
Healthcare Construction Director
Jeannie Cullen Schultz is all about teamwork, both on the basketball court and in her role at JP Cullen. As the head of the family’s standalone health care division, Cullen’s team has blown away their 2015–2016 financial business plan by 204%, and she expects to build on that success throughout Dane County.
A college athlete at Dartmouth College, Cullen Schultz played in back-to-back NCAA basketball tournaments, but her proudest achievement, besides being a 5th generation family business member, is her toddler-son, Cullen.
She admires former UW basketball coach Bo Ryan for getting the most out of his teams, and Steve Ross, president of North American Mechanical, her former employer. “He taught me how to trust and give individuals opportunities to be responsible for profit and loss, which in our business is key.”
Favorite color: Orange. “It’s just always been my favorite, which works nice since I am a Bears fan!”
J.H. Findorff & Son Inc.
Chad Eschler is thankful to wife Michelle for many things, but the amazing experience of travel is right at the top of the list. He credits Michelle for opening his eyes to the joys of backpacking in the Appalachians, mud baths in Costa Rica, and snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef, among other trips.
He’s also going places at J.H. Findorff. The UW–Whitewater graduate recently transitioned from managing Findorff’s special projects group to a position in business development with an emphasis on science and technology. “Becoming more focused on the forever growing biotech and software industries and their impact on our local economy is rewarding work,” he says.
Favorite colors: Yellow and blue. “When I was young, I always wanted a 1950s yellow Chevy truck.” As an adult, taking a Caribbean vacation with wife Michelle, he’s “always amazed by how blue the water is when we get near the reef.”