Jim Kacmarcik - Owner
Jim Kacmarcik is president of Kapco, Inc., a diverse group of businesses based in Grafton, Wisconsin.
Kapco formed in 1972 and Jim grew up in the business and joined his father, Tom, in 1985 a full-time role. In addition to exceeding client expectations, Jim exhibits a strong commitment to giving back to the community through a range of philanthropic endeavors, charitable events, and volunteer opportunities for employees and local volunteers.
A natural entrepreneur, Jim has formed and funded start-up companies that match his passion for music, sports, and automobiles. KNE (K-Nation Entertainment) and Given Music Publishing are focused on entertainment.
A sports fan, Jim is president and majority owner of the Northwoods League collegiate wood bat team, the Lakeshore Chinooks. On the professional level, Jim is an active member of the Milwaukee Bucks local investor group as a minority owner of the team.
Central to Jim’s life—and above all other considerations, is his love for family, country, faith, and appreciation for the blessings he has received. Along with his wife Laura and five children, Jim Kacmarcik is always looking forward to the next chapter in his life.
Vern Stenman - President
As the President of Big Top Baseball Vern’s role includes management and part ownership of the Madison Mallards, Wisconsin Rapids Rafters, Kenosha Kingfish and Green Bay Bullfrogs of the Northwoods League. He also oversees management of Breese Stevens Field and Festival Foods Shake the Lake. Stenman, the 2003 and 2005 Northwoods League Executive of the Year, is entering his nineteenth season in the NWL. His innovative promotional ideas and steady vision have contributed to the Mallards consistently ranking in the top 25 in attendance in all of Minor League Baseball. He has helped draw over 200,000 fans per year from 2006 through 2015.
Prior to Madison he was an intern and later Assistant GM for the St. Cloud River Bats from before taking a position with the NHL’s Minnesota Wild for a year. Stenman and wife Kallie have two children, daughter Chloe Mae (8), and son Bode (4) and live in Madison. He is originally from St. Cloud, MN.
Conor Caloia - Chief Operating Officer
Conor Caloia is one of the founders and owners of Forward Madison FC and oversees the day-to-day operation of the business as Chief Operating Officer.
Along with Vern Stenman, Caloia oversees the Madison Mallards, Wisconsin Rapids Rafters, Kenosha Kingfish and Green Bay Booyah of the Northwoods League and the Green Bay Voyageurs FC of USL League Two, which together attracted nearly 700,000 visitors to their venues in 2019 and employs more than 1,200 individuals across the state of Wisconsin.
Caloia started his career in sports as a public relations intern for the Madison Mallards in 2003. Caloia also spent time as the Director of Marketing at the Western Athletic Conference and Director of Operations of the Wilmington Sharks of the Coastal Plain League.
Caloia is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a B.A. in Journalism-Strategic Communication. He received his M.B.A. from UW-Madison in May of 2013. He lives on the near west side of Madison with his wife Rachel, daughter Ella, and son Keegan.
Steve Schmitt - Owner
Steve Schmitt’s passion for the game and extraordinary attention to customer service are two big reasons why Big Top Baseball has become a mainstay across the entire state of Wisconsin and beyond. Also the owner of the Shoe Box and Rookies Sports Bar in Black Earth, WI, Steve is actively involved in the community and is a huge St. Louis Cardinals fan. He is also the owner of the Madison Mallards, Wisconsin Rapids Rafters, Kenosha Kingfish, and Green Bay Bullfrogs, all of the Northwoods League.
Chase Eagan - Director of Merchandising
Chase Eagan is responsible for overseeing all retail operations at Big Top Sports & Ent., including Forward Madison. His focus is on buying and designing products that connect with consumers, and to ensure outstanding retail and online shopping experiences for each team's fanbase. Before joining Big Top, Chase spent three years working for Adidas in their field marketing program. Chase was also an intern for the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters in the summer of 2014 and a seasonal for the Madison Mallards in 2015.
Outside of work, Chase enjoys following the Milwaukee Brewers, spending time outdoors, and is an avid sneaker collector. Chase resides in Stoughton with his wife, Paige.
Jason Klein - Digital Content Manager
Jason Klein manages Forward Madison's online presence, which includes running the day-to-day activities on Flamingo social media, writing news releases, managing the press box on gamedays, and selectively implementing Oxford commas. Jason graduated from UW-Madison in 2019, majoring in history, French, and journalism, which sure has a lot to do with planting flamingos in the snow and researching memes.
Jason's love affair with soccer began at age 11, when he lived for six months in Cambridge and began watching Arsenal matches. When Jason was in high school near Indianapolis, he spent so much time online following the newly-formed Indy Eleven that his parents attempted to take away his Internet access. In retrospect, Jason would like to affirm that he was simply preparing for his future the whole time.
Kuba Krzyzostaniak - Director of Fan Engagement & Digital Media
Kuba Krzyzostaniak is responsible for maintaining positive community relations and working directly with supporters to integrate Forward Madison FC with the community. He is also in charge of the club's digital media presence. Kuba had six years of working in the soccer world before joining Forward Madison FC. First, in Major League Soccer's digital office with KICKTV/COPA90, before moving to Germany and working for the Bundesliga for the last two years.
A lifelong soccer fan, Kuba is a passionate supporter of Polish club Lech Poznan, from the city of his birth, and Liverpool FC. He strongly recommends vacationing in Katwijk aan Zee, Netherlands, the birthplace of Liverpool legend Dirk Kuyt. Just don't tell your family that's why you're there.
Molly Schicantek - Director of Finance
Molly Schicantek oversees accounting and finance for Forward Madison, as well as the other teams connected to its ownership group, Big Top Sports & Entertainment. Molly's passion for soccer lies in the nuances of the sport as a business. This is fortunate, because her agility with numbers vastly exceeds her skills with a soccer ball.
Molly got her start in the industry with five years of ticket office management experience while completing the Accounting Masters program at UW-Milwaukee. Degree in hand, Molly then spent 10 years in progressive roles as a member of the BMO Harris Bradley Center finance team. Still a resident of Milwaukee, Molly is the team's leading expert on Kwik Trip dining along the I-94 corridor.
Jovan Chavez - Latino Outreach Manager & Senior Ticket Sales Representative
Jovan Chavez is responsible for growing Forward Madison's brand awareness, specifically in the Latino community. He does this by working directly with Latino leaders, businesses, and communities in Madison and the surrounding area. He is also one of the club's inside sales executives who manages season tickets accounts, group tickets and non-profit spotlight partnerships. Jovan is new to the sports world, but he brings over 12 years of sales and marketing experience to the front office team.
An avid soccer fan, you can catch Jovan rooting on his beloved Mexican National Team as well has his favorite club, Liverpool, whenever they play. Outside of soccer, Jovan enjoys cruising on his bike, snowboarding, traveling, and spending time outdoors hiking the nation's beautiful parks. Whether it's the beaches of Ixtapa or Waikiki, make sure to buy Jovan a round of cold snacks the next time you see him!
Monica Wagner - Vice President of Corporate Ticket Sales
Monica Wagner is going on her second season overseeing the corporate ticket sales team for Forward Madison, as well as her 10th season with the Madison Mallards baseball team. Monica received her undergrad in marketing from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and completed her Masters in Sport Administration from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Monica worked for Life Time Fitness and the Minnesota Twins before returning to Madison in 2010.
Monica became a die-hard soccer fan on May 17, 2018, the day the new club was announced. She’s thoroughly enjoyed learning about the sport and working to bring it to Madison’s corporate community. Whenever Monica isn’t rooting for the Flamingos or the Mallards, she enjoys spending time with her husband Lucas and kids, Cora and Leo. They love to ski, travel, cook and attend many, many sporting events!
Tryg Chinander – Director of Stadium Operations
Tryg (short for Trygve) is entering his fourth year with Big Top Sports & Entertainment. Tryg graduated with a degree in Sport Management from UW-La Crosse in 2016, and after working two summers for the Madison Mallards, he transitioned into a full time role managing Breese Stevens Field. Here, Tryg helps bring a wide variety of events to life, from food festivals to Forward Madison games to large-scale concerts.
Wisconsin born and raised, it comes as no surprise that Tryg's favorite events from last fall were the Cheese Curd Festival and Oktobeerfest. When he isn’t helping run events, Tryg enjoys duck hunting, playing cards, and spending time with his two year old black lab, Thor. Make sure you keep an eye out for this friendly Norwegian at Breese Stevens Field this year!