By Jessie Reestman
Mike Schmitt was fourteen years old when he first began working summers in the field of construction, watching, learning and developing an interest while under the direction of his father. He explained, “I like working outside, I liked to build things, I just knew that this was what I was going to do.” Sadly, in the summer of 1974, while Mike was home from college, his father passed unexpectedly. Having obtained two years of education between his studies at Northeast Community College and Milford, Mike made the decision to carry on the family business and took over Schmitt Construction in 1975, never imagining the life and career he would build.
Mike and his wife Jan will have been married 50 years this coming January. They are the proud parents of three successful boys Chad (wife Tara – née Reestman), BJ (wife Angie – née Hanson) and Mikey (wife Jessica – née Funk), all boys having careers in law enforcement. They have nine grandchildren. Mike has operated Schmitt Construction for 47 years and has served on the Elgin City Council for just about as long, first taking his seat in 1976. He has served as Elgin’s mayor for three terms and has listened to more children’s Christmas wishes than one can count while acting as the local Santa Claus since 1975. These attributes and commitments demonstrate Mike’s strengths as a family man, community leader, are the reasons for his success as a businessman. For the complete story turn to this weeks’s Elgin Review.