Location: Waukesha County, WI
Industry: Refined Custom Homes
Jon Schoenheider, owner of Regency Builders in Waukesha County, lives and works following six tenets. They are: be a devout Christian, be a devoted husband, raise incredible citizens, do not judge, give back, and be nice.
“I have learned in my 35 years in our family business to stay nimble, keep overhead down and remain debt free,” Schoenheider said.
Schoenheider’s first job was at 8 years old, delivering papers in Scottsdale, Arizona, at 3:30 a.m. Within six months, he was selling newspaper subscriptions. His family moved to Milwaukee when he was in high school and he got a job at McDonald’s, where he worked his way up to management. In college, Schoenheider joined UPS to pay for tuition at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Within six months, he was a supervisor.
Out of college, he worked for Fortune 100 company Marion Pharmaceuticals and in 1988 took a role in the family business, Regency Builders, which was founded in 1973 by Schoenheider’s in-laws, Hank and Carol Bertram. Schoenheider is a natural leader, evidenced by his rise to management roles since he was a teen, and that continues today.
In 2008, Regency revenues were $50 million. In 2009, as the recession hit, Regency revenues plummeted to $7.5 million. At one point, the company had just $18,000 in the bank. It liquidated assets to pay off debts, and the business and its leaders survived by creating a new business identity and maintaining positivity, allowing the company to survive and prosper.
“This time frame (2009–2011) was one of the most impactful, spiritual, family and business times of my life,” Schoenheider said. “I learned so much. As a person, you need to persevere and appreciate every day for what that day has in store for you. I also vowed to never be in debt again. We have zero business debt.”
Today, Regency works with clients on detailed builds and actively constructs 10 to 12 custom-designed luxury homes per year. The company has found success focusing on one-of-a-kind generational estate homes. Its homes dot the landscape at lakes and high-end neighborhoods in the region.
“We understand that our clientele builds with Regency in part because their home may be passed down to their children, grandchildren and generations to come,” the company said. “Regency’s lengthy experience leads the way in assisting our clients in what is new, innovative, creative, superior construction and ahead of the curve. Regency creates quality building experiences, not just quality builds.”
Regency has built homes for CEOs, manufacturers, professional athletes and entrepreneurs. The recession helped Schoenheider and company leadership realize that size kills. Being nimble with low overhead is a better path, the company said, due to the volatility of the construction market. Today it averages $25 million annually.
Philanthropy is also a priority for Regency. It helped ship 7,500 care packages to American troops in Desert Storm, raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for Children’s Hospital behavioral health and research, sponsored efforts to combat juvenile diabetes and more.
I am high octane, positive, and passionate about making a difference in those around me. I am a firm believer of work hard, play hard. I was a pretty good athlete in my days. You will find me silently competitive winning and losing graciously.I count my "Perfect days" a perfect day is completely defined by me. At no point in the moment of a day that i don't want to be in that moment then it is not a perfect day. I have had as little as 7 and as most as 16 in a year. Perfect days typically require family and friends exercise and adventure