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Honoree Headshot

Michael Hartmann

President and Chief Executive Officer
Action Fire & Alarm

Location: Waukesha, WI
Founded: 1986
Industry: Fire Safety

Knowing your limitations and admitting your weaknesses are no easy tasks, but it’s one of the most important steps to effective leadership, says Michael Hartmann, president and CEO of Action Fire & Alarm.

“The most important thing I’ve learned is to understand what I am good at, and what I am not,” he said. “This is a tough lesson to learn, because we often are afraid to admit what we do not know or are not strong at. However, over time, through the trials, delays and/or opportunities missed, I have come to understand the benefits of accepting that I may not always be the proper piece to complete the puzzle.”

Hartmann grew up in and around entrepreneurship and sales. His father was the CEO of Super Steel, so he had a good model to emulate. By the age of 17, Hartmann started his own lawn care and landscaping business, Natural Landscape Services. After high school, Hartmann sold the landscaping business and joined ACM Fire Protection to develop the company’s alarm division.

In 2007, Hartmann acquired Action Fire Protection. Since then, Action Fire Protection has transitioned from one employee to 38 under the name Action Fire & Alarm. Under Hartmann’s leadership, the company has become one of the leading providers of fire sprinkler systems, fire alarms, fire extinguishers, wet chemical systems and special hazard systems in Wisconsin.

Within the next five years, Action Fire & Alarm will open its newest division, sprinkler fabrication. This division will require 10 new full-time employees that will operate a fabrication shop with robotic welders, threading machines and pipe grooving machines to provide code-compliant fire sprinklers.

The company is also making renewable energy a pillar of its mission going forward. Its vision includes increasing its geographical reach for services while simultaneously decreasing its energy intake. There are plans to install solar panels at Action Fire & Alarm headquarters, switch to paperless administration at the office and convert gas vehicles to a new electric fleet.

“We believe that renewable energy is the way of the future, and we are committed to doing our part to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels,” the company said. “Going solar will help us reduce our carbon footprint and going paperless will help us save trees and other resources. Switching to an all-electric fleet of vehicles will also help us reduce pollution and save money on fuel costs. We are committed to making these changes in order to reduce our environmental impact and create a brighter future for generations to come.”

Presented by:

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Honoree Fun fact

One fun fact about Michael is his natural ability to pull together creative projects. In spring 2017, he had the dream of constructing beautiful treehouse structures in swamp land in Homosassa, Florida. This was no small feat - it took the work of 12 of Michael's colleagues and 18 laborers to make it come to fruition. Thanks to Michael's vision and leadership, what could have been broke ground on December 18th, 2018.Each treehouse varied in size ranging from 200-700 square feet, making the smallest ‘tiny homes’. No expense was spared to create the five unique structures as the four-year project reached a total investment of 1.5 Million dollars. Since its completion in the late fall of 2021, all the treehouses have become a popular attraction in the area, and people come from all over to admire the beautiful landscape in a luscious, amenity-packed home.When asked if Michael would take on a similar task, he shared he would be excited to get involved in the right deal– especially when he’s able to gather personal colleagues on a creative project of this magnitude.

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