Co-owner | Stefan Soccer Supply Inc.
2075 S. 170th St., New Berlin
Employees: 47 during offseason months, 70-75 during the summer
Nowakowski, who co-owns Stefans Soccer with her husband, Dan, represents the second generation of family ownership of the athletic apparel and equipment store.
“Basically, we run two businesses,” she said. “We run the retail soccer specialty and we also have the institutional side of the business that sells uniforms and soccer equipment.”
The family ties run even deeper than that. Nowakowski said both her children also hold prominent roles in the business. Craig works full-time on the retail side as a general manager, while Kate is full-time on the institutional side with order processing and customer service.
Nowakowski thrives on change. She also runs the business to be as flexible to change as possible, so it can adjust when the time is right. This is exemplified through Stefans’ recent decision to purchase the former Fun World building in the Town of Brookfield, where Stefans plans to put a new flagship store, company headquarters and warehouse operations all under one roof.
“We’re always looking to improve; we’re always looking for the next best thing,” Nowakowski said.
She loves to travel. Because of the business she’s in, Nowakowski has been able to visit places like South Africa, Germany and Italy. “There’s nothing like a World Cup, especially when you travel to another country and you see fans from all over the world.”
Nowakowski has two grandchildren, a 4-year-old and an 18-month-old. “They keep me busy,” she said.
Nowakowski likes her coffee black.