The Wisconsin Auctioneers Association held their 2018 Annual Convention with the theme of “Navigating the Future!”

The WAA Convention on Sunday morning opened their doors to the general public and did an “Appraisal Fair” on items that the public brought in to be appraised by various auctioneers and appraisers from their perspective of the auction industry. The “appraisal” fee was a donation to the Humane Society of Stevens Point Area.  WAA was fortunate to have Shirley Bauman as a guest appraiser, along with volunteer auctioneer/appraisers were, Carol Miller, Wayne Yoder, Kathy Packard and Kendall Thiel.

The WAA Convention started by fulfilling part of the association’s mission statement with the Continuing Education course of Ethics presented by Sterling Strathe, a retired Professor and professional auctioneer accredited by the WI Department of Safety and Professional Services to teach various Continuing Education courses. The state department requires each licensed auctioneer to earn 12 credits every two years in continuing education.

With the first evening came the first contest of the WAA Convention which was the preliminaries for the WI State Champion Auctioneer with 17 WAA members vying for one of ten places to continue onto the WI State Fair in August for the finals. The Top Ten at the end of the evening were:  Stan Jones, Dave Lulich, Mark Oberholtzer, Joe Mellem, Christopher Sund, Ray Henry, Randy Stockwell, Kale George, Kathy Packard, and Jenny Gehl.  The finals will be held at the WI State Fair on Tuesday, August 7th, 2018 in the Coliseum at the WI State Fair Park, West Allis, WI.

Monday opened with the “color guard” presenting the flags and the introduction of new members of 2017. Then it was off to a wonderful motivation speaker, Tim Thibodeau, Distinguished Professor Viterbo University, La Crosse, WI.  His presentation of “Positive Power of Servant Leadership and his message of how we all can provide a positive influence on all we meet and interact with.  The day continued with more wonderful speakers and sessions to attend throughout the convention including Beth Rose the International Champion Auctioneer of 2017 with the topic of “Becoming a winner and stepping outside of your comfort zone.”

During lunch the Novice Auctioneer Contest was held with Matt Zimmerman, Thorp being announced as the winner and Jim Mentink of Glenwood City 1st Runner-Up and Bridget Siler of Rochester, MN 2nd Runner Up.  The Novice Auctioneer contestants sold pies for the WAA Auxiliary which is their main fundraiser for the year.  The WAA Auxiliary provides scholarships and also donates to a charitable cause.  The “Novice” Champion, Matt Zimmerman is also invited to the WI State Fair competition for WI State Champion Auctioneer.

Scott Schuman, from the National Auctioneer Association and current President of NAA provided a session after lunch – “Navigating the future with NAA & the future of Real Estate Auctions”.

The WAA membership then held their Annual meeting and the agenda held a proposal for a by-law change and the election of officers. The election saw Jeffrey Hines, Ellsworth becoming President-Elect; David Allen, Cross Plains, Vice-President; Beaner Stockwell, Dorchester, Treasurer; and the two new WAA Board of Directors are Bridget Siler, Rochester, MN and Curtis Kramer, Prairie du Chein.

The WAA “Gala” evening banquet was emceed by Heidi Miller and Jenny Gehl.  The Gala included the induction of the Wisconsin Auctioneers Hall-of-Fame 2018 inductees – Bob Hagamann, Burlington and Rich Ranft, Beloit.  The WAA Auxiliary inducted Julianne Gill, Shullsburg to the WAA Auxiliary Hall of Fame.

The evening” Gala” continued with entertainment the “Champion Ringman’s Competition with an auction.  Beth Rose was the auctioneer for this event and the contestants were judged on their skills as ringman.  The title of Champion Ringman was awarded to Scott Werlein of Mondovi. Second was Jenny Gehl of Dousman and third Christopher Sund of LaCrosse. The “fun” auction continued on after the “Gala” presentations with various auctioneers bringing forward various items for the crowd to bid on and raise funds for various entities of the Wisconsin Auctioneers Association.

The final day was full of mini sessions in the morning with Brian Rigby of Professional Ringman’s Institute titled “Improving Your Skills” and Jerry Chuilly delivering “Personal Property Appraisals” and Kenny Lindsay presenting “The Gambling Auctioneer Trouble Going in/Trouble Going Out”. Beth Rose of Rose Auction Group and Beth Rose Real Estate and Auctions presented “Rocking the 3 R’s”.  Auction Flex and Wavebid presented “Auction Software”.  The luncheon was the awarding of the Media Contest with the winners being:

1st Photography – Massart Auctioneer|
1st Digital Media – Jenny Gehl, Bravo Benefit Auction
1st Print Media – Massart Auctioneer
1st Promotional Item – Christopher Sund, My Favorite Auctioneers.

The afternoon was once again a Continuing Education credits presented by WI DOT & AFT on “Rules and Regulations”.

President Kendall Thiel closed the WAA Annual convention with a thank you and safe travels to all. The 2019 WAA Convention is scheduled for Jan. 27 to Jan. 29, 2019 at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point, WI.

The Wisconsin Auctioneers Association is a non-profit trade association that exists for the purpose of promoting the growth and professionalism of the auction method of marketing and auctioneering in the state of Wisconsin. For information about the organization you can go to the website www.wisconsinauctioneers.org.