Chief Executive Officer, President
Kraig joined his father in business in 1997 as the company’s first full-time hire. His entrepreneurial spirit has led American Companies to add a design and engineering firm, carpentry team, and complete project management staff. In addition to leading the core business, Kraig has worked to develop and coordinate multiple real estate investment groups throughout Wisconsin and the Midwest. He feels investing directly in projects with trusted equity partners has been valuable for all involved.
A West Bend native, Kraig graduated from West Bend East, UW-Madison and worked for Hershey Chocolate Corporation in Sales and Sales Management before joining Kons at American in 1997. Both he and Jo wanted their children to know “where the Christmas Tree goes” and felt raising a family in a community they support was critical to their mission in life. Relocating from Minneapolis back to West Bend was a decision they do not regret.
Community involvement is very important to Kraig: he is a graduate of the Leadership Greater West Bend Program, a past board member of the YMCA, Boys & Girls Club, West Bend Athletic Association, West Bend School District Foundation, the West Bend Waterways Foundation, Chamber of Commerce Board and past chairman of the Urban Design Committee and the West Bend School District Private Task Force. He is a current member of the West Bend Baseball Association and Rotary Club.
Kraig enjoys big buildings and small government and proudly served as the Mayor of West Bend from 2011 to 2019 with the mission of ‘asking questions that have never been asked before’.
Kraig lives in West Bend with Jo, his wife of over 25 years, and their 4 daughters. Kraig enjoys time with his family, the outdoors, traveling, skiing, biking, an occasional round of golf and debating politics.
Chief Operating Officer, Vice President
Chief Operating Officer and Vice President since 2013, Todd first started working with the American Companies nearly 20 years ago. Todd is responsible for all construction-related activities and has overseen the design and construction of 12 hotels in Wisconsin and Illinois, as well as hundreds of commercial buildings, manufacturing facilities, and professional office spaces.
Safety is a key priority for American, and Todd has led the implementation of corporate safety training initiatives including First Aid and CPR certification for American Companies staff. He has personally completed OSHA 30-Hour Safety Certification, OSHA 10-Hour Certification, Safety Management Training, and additional clinics and seminars.
Married with three children (including son Ryan, also an American Companies Site Manager), Todd is an active member of his church, and serves as a school board member, participating in multiple school committees. He has also volunteered as a coach for multiple basketball, softball and baseball teams in his community. Hobbies include spending time with family and friends, golfing, and other outdoor activities.
Business Manager / Integrator
From business manager to real estate broker to property manager, Jo is the glue that holds our organization together. Jo is the co-founder of the American Commercial Real Estate division and has overseen property management and financial services for more than 30 partner entities. Her favorite part of the job is working with people, from colleagues to real estate clients, landlords and tenants.
Jo enjoys outdoor activities and traveling, as well as cheering for her four busy daughters in their many sports and activities and spending time with her husband, Kraig.
Adam Hertel, AIA
Chief Design Officer
As soon as Adam joined the team, he took on a leadership role at American Architectural Group. His architectural experience spans nearly two decades with a focus in commercial and hospitality design. Adam earned his bachelor’s degree in architectural studies with a certificate in urban planning from UW-Milwaukee and is a registered architect in Wisconsin and Arizona.
Adam and his wife have two daughters. Together, they like playing and watching sports, especially baseball and football, and watching movies. He was also a member of the West Bend Sunrise Rotary club, serving as Past President, as well as multiple other boards and committees.
Chris has had his hands on practically every American Companies build project since joining the organization over a decade ago. He began working in construction while in high school, starting with masonry and then earning a spot as foreman at Cleary Building Corp. With extensive experience working in post-frame buildings, roofing and siding, and home remodeling, Chris has mastered the art of rough and finish carpentry.
In his spare time, Chris likes to hunt, fish, and is a strong supporter of the second amendment.
Dan was a born entrepreneur. Turning concepts into buildings has been his passion ever since he started his own custom home building company in 1990. He’s completed over 150 residential homes and condominiums and finds satisfaction in showing off his work to his two teenage boys. Looking for a new challenge, Dan managed the construction of an 87-room Towne Place Suites by Marriott in Minooka, Illinois for American Companies, and then accepted a full-time site manager position soon after completion.
Dan began racing karts when he was 9 and then midget cars until he was 29 years old. Racing helped mold Dan’s work ethic and required him to be highly organized; if his car wasn’t prepared when he hit the track, a lot of time and money would have been wasted. He applies these same skills to the projects he manages today, keeping them on time and budget.
In addition to earning a bachelor’s degree in finance at UW-Whitewater, Dan has been a licensed real estate broker since 1997.
Randy has been involved in the construction and maintenance trades for almost 40 years working on projects ranging from residential to food and beverage to retail. Randy ran the maintenance and construction department for a large senior housing provider and gained valuable construction knowledge in his 13 years with them. He has traveled to 43 states as a superintendent and as a project manager for a nationwide senior housing provider. In the past he has worked as a carpenter, site supervisor, estimator and project manager as well as completed many residential projects on his own.
His knowledge across many trades and multiple positions within the industry allows him bring to new ideas to the team at ACS.
Randy currently resides in West Bend with his wife of 40 years and they enjoy spending summer weekends with their children and grandchildren at the family campsite in Shawano. When not working or camping Randy enjoys being in nature and practicing photography.
Randy is OSHA 10 certified and is an approved SWMP. (Storm Water Management Professional)
Dan Silkey, P.E.
Since Dan started with the American Companies in 2019, he has shown drive and passion for his career as a Structural Engineer. Completing his Master of Science degree in Civil-Structural Engineering, he juggled his work, home life, and school at the same time. Before completing his Master’s, Dan was a proud graduate of the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering.
He and his wife, Erin, have two sons, and a baby daughter that keep them on their toes. Dan and his active household enjoy spending time outdoors and can be found on the golf course most weekends with his sons.
Chief Administration Officer
Emily joined the American Companies team in 2017. She is a graduate from UW-Platteville holding a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Management, and a minor in Psychology. Her previous work experience at a law firm and a bank helped solidify her skills that she uses daily. Emily was promoted to Chief Administration Officer in 2021, and is a leader in the office, ensuring smooth operation of the entire Administration department.
Emily and her daughter enjoy spending time outdoors with family, traveling, and camping.
Mike’s focus as a site technician is all things carpentry. He’s been doing it his entire life; first with his own business and now with American Companies. Even with his many years of experience in the trades, Mike says he never stops learning.
When outside of work, Mike is happiest on a boat, preferably reeling in a monster walleye.
Pete brings wit, humor and tenacity to our field operations. He has nearly 20 years of experience in custom hardwood molding, manufacturing, trucking, and heavy equipment operations.
In an ideal world, Pete would spend his time soaking up the sun in the Caribbean with his fiancé, hiking, biking or remodeling his home.
Site Manager, ABC PS Certificate
Ryan joined the American Companies after honorably serving 4 years in the US Army, where he learned leadership, problem solving, accountability, and the importance of teamwork. Ryan uses his experience to navigate everything from team management and problem solving, to stress-management. As a site manager, he has a knack for anticipating problems before they arise and addresses them before they become issues. Ryan views timely communication and safety as top priority for both our customers and sub-contractors. Ryan has also earned his ABC of Wisconsin – Construction U Project Supervision Certificate.
When not at work, Ryan prefers to be outdoors – hunting, fishing, backpacking, and kayaking with friends and family (including dad, Todd, also of American Companies).
Scott started at the American Companies in 2000, since that time, he has worked relentlessly to complete over 1,000 projects. He is an expert in AutoCAD, Revit, and getting $hit done! He is an integral part of the architecture team and shows his leadership by always being honest, upfront, and by setting and sticking to strict project deadlines. Scott is a proud graduate of Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College and earned his Associates degree in Architectural Commercial design there.
He and his wife have two daughters and a yellow lab named Jak. In his free time, he enjoys vacationing up north, spending time with family, and reeling in monster Muskies.
Christa became part of the American Companies family in January 2021. She brings experience of over 10 years in retail banking and management to the team and applies those skills to her current position as Administrative Assistant. She always greets everyone with a smile, and her can-do attitude helps multiple departments run smoothly. As a graduate of both the West Bend Area Chamber Leadership Program and the West Bend Police Department Citizens Academy Program, Christa recognizes the importance of being involved in the community. She volunteers through 4-H and helps out at many community events.
Christa, her husband, and her daughter enjoy spending time playing outdoors with their dog Bear. In her spare time, she loves gardening (starting many plants from seed), canning, fishing, drawing, and spending time with her family.
Compliance Officer, ABC PS Certificate
Stephen has held multiple positions at the American Companies. He was a project manager overseeing construction projects, and then found his passion for estimating. He applies his engineering mindset to help find the best value solutions for projects. Stephen is a graduate from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee holding a Mechanical Engineering degree.
Stephen and his wife have a son, and he greatly enjoys time with his family. They live their faith and enjoy time with friends and family, which is most often spent unwinding and sharing a meal together.