Stratton to keynote Economic Trends Breakfast

Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:40 pm

Small Business Times invites readers who are interested in getting a jumpstart on the year ahead to attend the 2007 Northern Trust Economic Trends Breakfast.

The annual event, which attracted more than 500 people last year, will take place Friday, Jan. 19, from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at the Pfister Hotel in downtown Milwaukee.

This year’s keynote speaker will be Harry Stratton II, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Strattec Security Corp. The Milwaukee company is the world’s largest producer of automotive locks and keys. Strattec designs, develops, manufactures and markets mechanical locks, electro-mechanical locks, latches and related security/access control products for global automotive manufacturers.

Strattec has facilities in Milwaukee, Michigan, Mexico, Germany, the United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Japan and China. In fiscal 2006, the company posted net sales of $181.2 million and net income of $12.5 million. Formerly a division of Briggs & Stratton Corp., Strattec’s heritage goes back nearly 100 years to the early days of the automobile.

At the 2007 Northern Trust Economic Trends Breakfast, Stratton will share his insights about the transformation of the American automotive industry and how Wisconsin manufacturers can compete in the global marketplace.

In addition to Stratton, the speaker panel of the 2007 Northern Trust Economic Trends Breakfast will include:

U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.)

Ryan represents Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District. A native of Janesville, Ryan is serving his fourth term in office. Ryan is a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, the House Budget Committee and the Joint Economic Committee. He has been at the forefront of the effort to reform the nation’s Social Security System. Ryan has been invited to share his insights about the year ahead in Washington, D.C.

Michael Knetter dean of the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Business.

Prior to joining the UW in 2002, Knetter was associate dean of the MBA program and professor of international economics at the Amos Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College and was rated one of Tuck’s top professors in Business Week’s Guide to Business Schools. His research is published and widely cited in leading academic journals such as the American Economic Review and Management Science. He remains a research associate for the National Bureau of Economic Research. Knetter has served as senior staff economist for macroeconomic analysis for the President’s Council of Economic Advisors for former presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton and as a consultant to the International Monetary Fund. At the breakfast, Knetter will give a macroeconomic overview of the year ahead.

Paul Shain chief executive officer of Berbee Information Networks Corp.

The Madison-based company provides information technology (IT) services and products across the Cisco, IBM and Microsoft platforms. Berbee has 11 offices and two data centers in six Midwestern states and employs about 800 people. Before the company was acquired by CDW Corp. in October, Berbee reported annual revenues of $390 million and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $22 million. Shain will discuss the business technological changes that lie ahead in 2007.

Michael Koss chief executive officer of Glendale-based Koss Corp.

Known worldwide for its high-fidelity stereophones and audio accessories, Koss Corp. also offers telecommunications, mobile and public safety communications headsets through its Koss Communications division and digital audiophile compact disc recordings of American orchestras on its Koss Classic label. Koss Corp. posted fiscal 2006 record sales of $50.9 million, record net income of $6.2 million and record earnings per share of $1.63. The company’s strongest growth came in Europe. Koss will discuss the secrets behind building a strong brand and penetrating markets overseas.

The 2007 Northern Trust Economic Trends Breakfast will be presented by Small Business Times, in conjunction TEC (The Executive Committee) and the Independent Business Association (IBA) of Wisconsin. Individual seating at the breakfast is available for $50. Corporate tables of 10 are available for $500. Seating is limited. For further information, contact Sarah Wilson at (414) 277-8181, ext. 129, or visit

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