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Business of the Month: November 2022

Lac du Flambeau Workforce Training & Business Development Center



VCEDC November Business of the Month

Congratulations to

Lac du Flambeau Workforce Training & Business Development Center

2640 Thorofare Road 

Lac du Flambeau, WI 54538 

Phone: (715) 388-0502 

[email protected] 


We were delighted recently to have a conversation with Karl Olson, Manager, Lac du Flambeau (LdF) Workforce Training and Development Center, to help share the direct positive impact it is making in Lac du Flambeau and the area.  

Tell us about out the LdF Workforce Training & Business Development Center.

The idea of creating a workforce training and business development center started back in 2018. The goal with the Center is to create new workforce opportunities for those within and around the community. 

The facility was completed in February of this year. The pandemic created delays, but our commitment to the Center never wavered. Given the changes in the workforce landscape over the past couple of years, we are developing job skills training curriculums that best serve the Northwoods today, and that will help shape its future.

Why was it important for you to establish the Center? 

Our plan is to bring both learning and employment opportunities to this side of Vilas County that do not currently exist.  The need for additional trained and skilled workers in the trades is so great here as the current workforce ages.  When you look at where we are, the nearest training centers are in Rhinelander or Ashland.  Not only can we train and serve the community of Lac du Flambeau, but we can be a regional hub serving to prepare skilled workers in the area, including Park Falls, Mercer and Arbor Vitae.

How many people are employed at the Center?

The Lac du Flambeau Workforce Training and Business Development Center is part of the Lac du Flambeau Business Development Corporation that employs approximately 110 people. 

What services do you offer? 

So far, we have been able to offer classes focused on employment readiness as well as courses on family budgeting.  We recently finished setting up our computer labs and will be offering courses training people in basic computer skills.  In addition, we are currently working on developing a pre-apprenticeship program for the construction and trades that we will be seeking state approval for. This will allow us to become a local hub for pre-apprenticeship training in the area, and we anticipate starting the program in the New Year.

Will there be employment opportunities for people who complete the programs?

The whole idea of trying to create a state certified pre-apprenticeship program in the area is driven by the need expressed by local companies.  Some local trades people will be the instructors while others will be invited in to both teach and evaluate student progress.  Students will have opportunities to show their skills for local companies and the local employers will have plenty of opportunity to evaluate student’s skills.

How do you give back to the community?

The workforce training and development center is intended to be a resource in the community.  We’ve been able to utilize our space to host employers looking for workers in the community and plan to offer courses that go beyond just workforce development.  Our biggest success to date has been our Youth Computer Building class.  We have partnered with Simpson Electric to run a class where students come in and learn to build a desktop computer and a 3D printer.  So far, we have been able to put 20 new computers and 3D printers into the community and our third cohort of 10 students is underway.    

What do you love most about living and working in Vilas County, and helping others learn a new skill?

Having grown up here it is amazing when you return to discover all the things you took for granted when you were younger.  The easy constant access to the natural beauty, the quick commutes between very cute communities and the openness of the people.  Having a chance to serve the community and bring more opportunities to the people and more resources to the local industries is a privilege. 

Congratulations!


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June 2020

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May 2020

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April 2020

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March 2020

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February 2020

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See All Business of the Month

Want to learn why Vilas County is one of the best places to live, work, and play?

Reach out to the folks at the Vilas County Economic Development Corporation today!

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