Since 2000, Maria Maculaitis has connected the dots into dollar signs. And beyond the bottom line, the 39-year-old owner of Contractor Connection Inc. in Canton has earned a reputation as someone who knows where to turn to get things done for her customers. “The reason I’ve had any success is my networking ability,” she said. “If there’s a place where I can be in front of somebody, building a relationship, that’s where I go. I dig. I do a lot of research. I call people up.” Established in 2000 as a part-time sourcing venture with two other partners and a single client, Contractor Connection now has a customer base reaching across the region and posted revenues of $1.5 million in 2008. Ms. Maculaitis is the sole owner of the business. Originally from Santa Cruz, Bolivia — her father was born and raised in Canton — Ms. Maculaitis did much of her growing up in Mexico City. After graduating from high school there, she came to Northeast Ohio to attend Walsh University in North Canton. With Timken Co. as its first customer, Contractor Connection’s roots were strong. Ms. Maculaitis’ company offered itself up as a vendor for smaller purchases or limited service contracts so the big company’s purchasing agents could stay focused on big-ticket work. Her projects for Timken ranged from procuring landscape services to setting up vocational training. Building on that experience, Ms. Maculaitis branched out into the construction arena. Her client roster includes Wood Electric Inc. of New Philadelphia, for which Contractor Connection serves as a material supplier. “She has the personality to adapt to this industry in order to obtain the product knowledge that’s required,” said Wood Electric president Larry Wood. “She’s very knowledgeable, extremely professional and helpful.” Ms. Maculaitis also finds that simply listening to people’s dilemmas to fully understand their needs has gone a long way. “It’s a matter of being creative … and stepping into their shoes,” she said.