Business Spotlight – The Flag Center
We recently spoke with Kristin Boyle, Vice President and co-owner of The Flag Center
Originally founded as The Flag Center in 1973, Kristin’s father, Tom Pluster, acquired the business 20 years later in 1993. Through his work as a real estate agent in the region, Tom had discovered that The Flag Center business was for sale. Rather than assist with the sale of the business, Tom saw this as an opportunity to purchase the business himself.
In the beginning, Tom himself completed all of the flag and flagpole installations on his own, while a seamstress worked on the flags. Twenty-five years later – their business has grown to eleven full-time employees, two of which are dedicated to the installation and repair of street banners, flags and poles, using an aerial lift for the taller installations.
Shortly after graduating from college, Kristen decided to join her parents at their family business. With her experience working alongside her parents, as she was growing up, it was a natural fit for her to come on board, eventually moving into the role of Vice President and Co-Owner of the business herself.
What types of Flags do you offer?
All of the flags we offer are made right here in the United States. This includes not only our American flags, but also flags from just about every country in the world – with versions available for both indoor and outdoor use. The Flag Center offers a wide variety of different flags to choose from, including patriotic flags, “Support Your Troops” flags, decorative flags, garden flags, seasonal flags, and memorial flags.
The Flag Center offers beautiful, hand-stitched flags with applique work on them, some having multiple layers of high-quality fabric. Other items include; miniature flags, flag decals, wooden puzzles and flag frames for display.
One of the biggest sellers is known as the “People’s Flag of Milwaukee” which is a redesign of the City of Milwaukee’s official flag. It is yellow and blue with three stripes, the stripes representing the three rivers that meet in the City of Milwaukee.
If you want a green solution, The Flag Center also carries solar lighting accessories for use around a flag pole. Individual parts and accessories can also be purchased to mount and display your own flag, or the our friendly staff at The Flag Center will be happy to install, repair or re-rope an existing flagpole. The Flag Center also collaborates and partners with Eder Flag, another longtime business located in Oak Creek.
Do you have an interesting fact or story about your business you’d like to share?
The Flag Center once had a job of installing a 60 ft flag pole on a commercial building site. When installers tried to dig on the site, the installers couldn’t dig down for the flagpole placement, so another business was called in to help. It was soon discovered that there was a large layer of Lannon stone where the flag was to be located! Now knowing the issue, the installers were able to drill the hole with assistance and were able to set the pole. Poles can be placed directly into the ground or set in a galvanized sleeve. Sand and cement is placed around flag poles as well.
Our largest single project to date has been the installation of 22 flag poles at a single location. We have the ability to deliver and install flag poles up to 80 ft in height.
How do you align yourself with the Gateway to Milwaukee Mission?
This year The Flag Center is celebrating 25 years in business. Moving into the second generation of ownership in the business, relationships with both businesses and individual customers are highly valued. The Flag Center strives to satisfy all customers through attention to detail and deliver what is promised.
We offer state-of- the-art fabrication systems, including in-house production, graphic design with a full-time graphic designer and IT management. We can take a conceptual design idea (even a hand drawn sketch) and turn it into digital artwork for a personalized flag.
The very best part of our family business is meeting the many wonderful people and businesses in the Milwaukee area – many of which take great pride in their businesses, their heritage and this country.
The Flag Center has manufactured and installed the street banners throughout the Gateway area since 2011 and, as a flag and banner dealer located right here in the Gateway Region, the Flag Center is proud to partner with the Gateway to Milwaukee’s street banner program.
Visit them in
Oak CREEK at
7158 South 13th Street
2954 North 117th Street
Wauwatosa, WI 53222