Top 10 auctioneers to advance to state finals at Wisconsin State Fair

posted Feb. 12, 2018 8:04 a.m. (CDT)
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The top 10 auctioneers named during the recent Wisconsin Auctioneers Association Convention in Stevens Point will advance to the finals event this summer at the Wisconsin State Fair in West Allis.

Preliminaries for the title of Wisconsin State Champion Auctioneer were held during the Wisconsin Auctioneers Association Convention Jan. 28-30 in Stevens Point. Seventeen WAA members vied for 10 finalist spots and the right to advance to the finals set for Aug. 7 at the state fair.

The top 10 auctioneers are Stan Jones, Dave Lulich, Mark Oberholtzer, Joe Mellem, Christopher Sund, Ray Henry, Randy Stockwell, Kale George, Kathy Packard and Jenny Gehl.

The convention opened Feb. 4 with an “Appraisal Fair” of items brought in by the public to be appraised by various auctioneers and appraisers. The “appraisal” fee was a donation to the Humane Society of Stevens Point Area. Shirley Bauman was a guest appraiser, along with volunteer auctioneer/​appraisers including Carol Miller, Wayne Yoder, Kathy Packard and Kendall Thiel.

Matt Zimmerman of Thorp won the Novice Auctioneer Contest and is eligible to compete for the Wisconsin State Champion Auctioneer title at the state fair. Jim Mentink of Glenwood City was first runner-up and Bridget Siler of Rochester, Minn., was second runner-up. Novice Auctioneer contestants sold pies for the WAA Auxiliary, their main fundraiser for the year. The Auxiliary provides scholarships and donates to a charitable cause.

Jeffrey Hines of Ellsworth was named president-elect of the WAA. Also elected to the board were David Allen, Cross Plains, vice president; Beaner Stockwell, Dorchester, treasurer; and directors Bridget Siler, Rochester, Minn., and Curtis Kramer, Prairie du Chein. Kendall Thiel is serving as president.

The WAA gala evening banquet, emceed by Heidi Miller and Jenny Gehl, included the induction of Wisconsin Auctioneers Hall of Fame 2018 inductees Bob Hagamann of Burlington and Rich Ranft of Beloit. The WAA Auxiliary inducted Julianne Gill of Shullsburg into its Hall of Fame.

The evening continued with the Champion Ringman’s Competition and an auction. Beth Rose was auctioneer for this event, in which contestants were judged on their skills as ringmen. The title of Champion Ringman was awarded to Scott Werlein of Mondovi. Second place went to Jenny Gehl of Dousman, and Christopher Sund of La Crosse came in third.

First-place winners in the media contest were Massart Auctioneers (Photography); Jenny Gehl, Bravo Benefit Auction (Digital Media); Massart Auctioneers (Print Media); and Christopher Sund, My Favorite Auctioneers (Promotional Item). 

A Continuing Education course on ethics was presented by Sterling Strathe, a retired professor and professional auctioneer accredited by the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services to teach various CE courses. Another CE credits course, on rules and regulations, was presented by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. The state department requires each licensed auctioneer to earn 12 CE credits every two years.

The next WAA Convention is scheduled for Jan. 27-29, 2019, at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point. The WAA is a nonprofit trade association that promotes growth and professionalism in the auction method of marketing and auctioneering in the state. For more information, visit

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