Manufacturing Days Touts 400-plus Job Openings in Door County

The Door County Economic Development Corporation touted the need for more than 400 workers to fill manufacturing jobs in Sturgeon Bay at the kickoff of Manufacturing Days Oct. 25.

DCEDC Executive Director Jim Schuessler brought in three executives from three different businesses – Steve Christoferson, vice president of manufacturing at Hatco; Bill Behme, head of HR and union relations at Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding; and Mike Baudhuin, executive vice president of Wiretech – to a press conference to talk about job openings. The announcement drew crews from all Green Bay television stations. 

Gibraltar, Sevastopol and Sturgeon Bay High School students were invited to visit some of the city’s manufacturing businesses in Sturgeon Bay Industrial Park and Bay Shipbuilding.

Schuessler kicked things off by pointing out that while Door County is known for its majestic beauty, not many know about the strong manufacturing base.

“Not everybody realizes there are great companies here that offer family sustaining wages, with quality of life benefits to match,” Schuessler said. “We definitely have some growing companies here. We want to show that off today.”

To showcase the businesses and jobs they offer, DCEDC started Manufacturing Day, which will be from 8 am to noon Saturday, Oct. 27, with 12 businesses conducting open house tours and job fairs.

“These 12 companies participating are hiring more than 400 people between them,” Schuessler said. “That’s a big deal in a city of little more than 9,000, in a county of around 30,000. That means millions of dollars. Those are family sustaining wages. A lot of the jobs, you don’t necessarily have to have a specific skill set. Many of the companies are willing to train.”

All three of the manufacturing executives reiterated Schuessler’s words, that they all have openings they need to fill.

“We are looking for welders, fitters, electricians, pipe fitters to bolster our ranks,” said Behme of Bayship. “It’s across the board. We have job openings right now in all of the trades and anticipate more coming in.”

Baudhuin of Wiretech said the wire-forming company is growing fast, with 20-plus production positions open, as well as openings for robotic programmers, production supervisors and team leaders.

“It’s kind of across the board,” Baudhuin said, adding that “Door County’s open for business.”

Schuessler reiterated that the free tours of the dozen businesses on Saturday will include job fairs.

“Hundreds of hires will be made here in Sturgeon Bay in the next couple of months and it’s only 30 minutes from Green Bay,” Schuessler said. “Tour the companies and fill out an application. Door County is not just a great place for recreation, it’s a fantastic place to live and work.”

The 12 Sturgeon Bay businesses opening their doors for Manufacturing Day are:

  1. Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding, 605 N. 3rd Ave.
  2. Hi Tec Fabrication, custom and production fabrication in carbon steel, stainless steel, aluminum and copper, 811 S. Neenah Ave.
  3. N.E.W. Industries, produces CNC- and robotic-machined and welded components for construction equipment, military vehicles, fire engines and more, 905 S. Neenah Ave.
  4. Sunshine House Inc., sub-assembly and manufacturing shop, 55 Yew St.
  5. ExacTech, custom precision metal fabricator for mega-size parts, 107 E. Walnut St.
  6. Marine Travelift, boat and material handling equipment manufacturer, 49 E. Yew St.
  7. Hatco Corp., commercial food service equipment for restaurants, convenience stores and supermarkets, 208 E. Deck St.
  8. Therma-Tron-X, industrial finishing systems and wastewater treatment systems, 1155 S. Neenah Ave.
  9. Cadence, precision metal stampings, plastic injection moldings and assembled components for automotive, electronic and medical manufacturers, 1425S. Neenah Ave.
  10. ProProducts, CNC machining of parts and components, 1450 S. Neenah Ave.
  11. WireTech Manufacturing, fabricating steel wire into components for outdoor power and furniture use, 124 Leeward St.
  12. Key Industrial Plastics, formed and machined plastics, 228 KeelCourt.

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