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When Randy Brink opened the doors to Kettle Moraine Heating and Air Conditioning 35 years ago, he never could have envisioned the company as it is today. Randy opened a small, local HVAC business in 1987. When he began, he was working out of an office in a barn with one goal in mind: providing five-star service in an industry that wasn’t known for customer service. Randy believed that great customer relationships were as important as industry knowledge and equipment.
Thirty-five years later, his son, Bill Brink is running that same company and carrying on his father’s legacy of service – only now, Kettle Moraine has expanded to two office locations, with a third in development, and has over 100 employees serving all of SE Wisconsin. The growth from a small heating and A/C shop to an expanding HVAC business with multiple locations and new service offerings is something Randy would have been proud to see – his son is carrying on his dream.
Bill Brink learned everything he needed to know about running a thriving HVAC business, from work ethic to providing excellent service, directly from his dad starting over 30 years ago. “I can remember when I was about nine years old, in the building that we’re in right now, which was the old Sax’s banquet hall,” recalls Bill. “My dad had the contract for the heating and one time, on a Saturday night, the heating went down during a snowstorm and my dad had asked me to come along with him. So we went up on the roof and I held the flashlight in the snow while we repaired the rooftop unit in the building that is now the office of Kettle Moraine Heating.”
Now, 35 years later, Bill is passing that same knowledge along to his children, whom he hopes will someday join the family business. You may recognize his children as the stars of the Kettle Moraine television commercials, but Bill is making sure to share his business acumen and HVAC expertise with them as well. “I like guiding and teaching, making sure they have the right tools for the job. We have four girls and one boy – it would be a great hope of mine that one or all of them took over the business in the future.”
As he continues to set his children up for success in the business, Bill also focuses on the team at Kettle Moraine today by providing his employees with the tools and support needed to be successful at work and at home. Adding services and benefits for his team is one of Bill’s biggest drivers today, as he believes five-star customer service begins with providing the same level of care for his employees. “When you set people up for success by providing the right resources and opportunities for personal and professional development, you get to watch them grow and thrive, and I love seeing that. Our employees are all eager to learn and problem-solve for the customer. They couldn’t do that if we didn’t invest in them as well.”
This year is the 35th anniversary of Kettle Moraine, and it has been a great time for our team to reflect on our journey over the last 35 years and explore new opportunities for the future. Most recently, this includes opening a dedicated electric and solar division and adding new services like radon testing and mitigation, both of which will provide enhanced value for our customers. For employees, Kettle Moraine takes great pride in adding to their benefits package every year. This year was no different, as employees received new and expanded benefits including increased paid time off, flexible work schedules and additional health plan options.
With all the growth that’s taken place since Bill re-opened his father’s shop, one thing remains the same – each of our team members at Kettle Moraine strives for the same goal that Randy built the business on by ensuring every customer has a five-star experience, and achieving that goal every day is the driver behind their success.
When asked what’s on deck for the next 35 years of Kettle Moraine Heating and Air Conditioning, Bill says, “I see nothing but positive things in our future.”