Page 1

Locally Owned Since 1995


w w MAY 15 - 28, 2017 n $3.25

T he




Growing your business won’t always be a work in progress. You have the power to grow your business. And with the U.S. Bank Business Quick Loan, it’s easier than ever. Get the financing you need to expand your business and operate more efficiently. Contact your local U.S. Bank Business Banker today.

Equipment and Vehicle Quick Loan Interest rates as low as



36 month term

Mike Ward Business Banking 414.765.6061

*The 3.49% interest rate applies to new or used equipment Quick Loan up to 80% LTV for loan terms up to 36 months for credit qualified applicants. Disclosed rate reflects 0.50% discount based on automatic monthly payments from a U.S. Bank Business Checking account. A $75 origination fee applies to all loans and will impact final APR. Higher rates may apply based on a lower credit score, a higher LTV, or not having automatic monthly payments taken from a U.S. Bank Business Checking account. Advertised rate is as of 05/15/2017 and subject to change without notice based on market conditions. Minimum Quick Loan amount is $5,000. Maximum Quick Loan amount is $250,000. Credit products offered by U.S. Bank National Association and are subject to normal credit approval and program guidelines. Some restrictions and fees may apply. Financing maximums and terms are determined by borrower qualifications and use of funds. See a banker for details. Deposit products offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Member FDIC. ©2017 U.S. Bank. 170581C 4/17 “World’s Most Ethical Companies” and “Ethisphere” names and marks are registered trademarks of Ethisphere LLC.


May 15 - 28, 2017 S P E C I A L R E P O R T:

WATE R TE CHNOLOGY 27 Coverage includes a look at the status of The Water Council’s goals, as well as information about how businesses can more efficiently collect and use water.

HIGHLIGHT S Now 4 Fiserv considers moving its headquarters.

Book Review


Made in Milwaukee


The Good Life


In the Neighborhood


‘Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience and Finding Joy.’ Creativity takes Brew City Brand beyond retail operation. Attorney Marvin Bynum gets into character. Versant Inc. is in the Historic Third Ward.


S TR ATE GIE S Leadership Karen Vernal 31 Coaching Susan Marshall 32 Generation Y Aleta Norris 33


The next act

BIZ CONNECTIONS Nonprofit Spotlight 34 Personnel File 35 BizTimes Around Town 37 Commentary 38 The Last Word 39

MSO move could shift city’s performing arts landscape ON THE COVER: Mark Niehaus, president and executive director of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. — photo by Kat Schleicher Photography

V I S I T B I Z T I M E S . C O M F O R A D D I T I O N A L S T O R I E S , D A I LY U P D AT E S & E - N E W S L E T T E R S Editorial . . . . . . . . . . . . 414-336-7120 Advertising . . . . . . . . . 414-336-7112 Subscriptions . . . . . . . 414-277-8181 Reprints . . . . . . . . . . . . 414-277-8181

Founded in 1995, BizTimes Milwaukee provides news and operational insights for CEOs, presidents, owners and other top level executives at companies in southeastern Wisconsin (Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee, Washington, Racine, Kenosha, Walworth and Sheboygan counties). Subscription Customer Service: BizTimes Milwaukee, 126 N. Jefferson St., Suite 403, Milwaukee, WI 53202-6120, USA, Phone (414) 277-8181, Fax (414) 277-8191,,

BizTimes Milwaukee (ISSN 1095-936X & USPS # 017813) Volume 23, Number 4, May 15 - 28, 2017. BizTimes Milwaukee is published bi-weekly, except two consecutive weeks in December (the second and third weeks of December) by BizTimes Media LLC at 126 N. Jefferson St., Suite 403, Milwaukee, WI 53202-6120, USA. Basic annual subscription rate is $42.00. Single copy price is $3.25. Back issues are $5.00 each. Periodicals postage paid at Milwaukee, WI and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send all UAA to CFS. NON-POSTAL AND MILITARY FACILITIES: send address corrections to BizTimes Milwaukee, 126 N. Jefferson St., Suite 403, Milwaukee, WI 53202-6120. Entire contents copyright 2017 by BizTimes Media LLC. All rights reserved.

Business in Waukesha County


Featuring: Top 10 Businesses of the Year Winner Profiles

Advertise in these upcoming special reports and get your message in front of area business executives.

June 12, 2017 Space Reservation: May 24, 2017

Contact Linda Crawford today! p: 414.336.7112 e:

June 26, 2017 Space Reservation: June 7, 2017

leading edge NOW

Fiserv considers moving its headquarters


iserv Inc. is considering moving its corporate headquarters out of Brookfield. The Fortune 500 financial services technology developer is considering proposals from several real estate developers to develop a new headquarters in the metropolitan Milwaukee area, according to a source familiar with the situation. A Milwaukee commercial real estate source said an RFP was issued a few weeks ago seeking proposals for Fiserv’s headquarters, and the company is looking for 125,000 square feet. “We continually evaluate our real estate portfolio across 18 countries and more than 120 locations worldwide to ensure that our workplace provides the best possible environment for our colleagues and our business,” said Fiserv spokeswoman Britt Zarling. “This evaluation is now extending to our corporate headquarters in Brookfield. During the next few months, we’ll be looking at how we might evolve our headquarters environment in alignment with our broader workplace strategy, brand and associate experience. We are in the very early stages of our exploration.” Meanwhile, Brookfield Mayor Steve Ponto said he and other city officials “are working hard to retain Fiserv in Brookfield.” Ponto would not comment further

on Fiserv. Fiserv will consider renovations to its existing Brookfield headquarters, Zarling said. Fiserv had $5.5 billion in revenue in 2016 and has about 23,000 employees at 120 global offices. Fewer than 4 percent of the company’s employees are in Brookfield. It’s possible the company could consider moving its headquarters out of state. About 1,600 of Fiserv’s employees were in Alpharetta, Georgia as of 2016, which makes it the third-largest employer in that market and one of the company’s largest operations. Fiserv last year acquired Atlanta-based Online Banking Solutions Inc., adding another 40 employees in that metro area. Peter Tokar III, economic development director for Alpharetta, declined to comment on whether Fiserv is considering moving its headquarters there. “My hunch is, a company of this size, with a large presence like they have in Georgia, is not just looking in our area, but in several other states,” the Milwaukee commercial real estate source said. “We have not made a commitment to any state to locate our headquarters, including Georgia,” Zarling said. Mark Maley, spokesman for the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., said the public-private entity doesn’t com-

The Fiserv headquarters in Brookfield.

ment on pending or potential incentive packages until a deal is complete. Pat O’Brien, a spokesman for regional economic development organization Milwaukee 7, also declined to disclose whether M7 is involved in negotiations with Fiserv. M7 serves as a sort of project manager for companies considering a relocation, connecting them to sources of incentives and talent, O’Brien said. “Fiserv, as a driver industry, one that

exports goods and services outside the region, is one we would focus on in terms of keeping them in the region and helping them in any way possible,” O’Brien said. “We are very interested in the outcome and we’ll help wherever we can.” “Our legacy is in the greater Milwaukee area and we are very open to any conversations and actions that would ultimately benefit our associates, clients and shareholders,” Zarling said.

——Molly Dill and Corrinne Hess


Facebook lead generation ads are gold for B2B Do you like leads? Do you want more of them? Do you feel like you have maxed out your reach on Google and Bing? Facebook might be your new best friend. Yes, Facebook is a great tool to build brand awareness or stay in front of current customers. But if you are focused on direct ROI, Facebook can still be a valuable tool thanks to its Lead Generation ad format. Let me show you why every B2B company should at least test this format on Facebook. Instead of your call-to-action button sending users to a different page, you can capture the conversion right on Facebook to save the user a few steps. Facebook gives you 4

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


the ability to customize the form to capture only the important information necessary to your business. Form field options include name, email address, phone number, company, job titles and much more. Just remember people are lazy online. The fewer form fields, the better. When creating a lead generation ad in Facebook, you still get the same audience targeting options as you would from any other format. With that in mind, imagine this scenario: If you have an email list of qualified users, you can upload those emails in Facebook to create a new audience. Then you can attach the customer match email list to a

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

new lead generation campaign to convert highly-qualified users without spending a lot of your budget. Your sales team will thank you. Last, and the best part about the lead generation ad format, is Facebook allows uers to sync a CRM system to its ad platform. Salesforce, Hubspot, MailChimp, Pipedrive, Constant Contact and more are all eligible to integrate with your lead generation ads on Facebook. CRM data will give you concrete information on whether Facebook ads are a viable channel to grow your B2B business online.

——Joe Martinez is senior manager, paid media and community, at Milwaukee-based Granular.

leading edge COFF E E B R E A K


GOP seeks savings through prevailing wage repeal BY WISPOLITICS.COM

What was the smartest thing your organization did in the past year?

“Launch our community equity program. Thanks to a grant secured by the Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee, Bublr was able to provide low-cost annual membership to everyone living in the HACM neighborhoods. The response has been very positive. Many of our riders cite the health benefits of bike riding as a motivation for being on their Bublrs.”

What’s new at your organization?

“Our new digs at the Grand Avenue Mall. We are so delighted to be the first tenants under the new mall ownership. Come visit us!”

challenges in the next year?

“Securing the necessary funding from the community to support sustainability and expansion of stations. And establishing our equity program as a national model.”

What’s the hottest trend in your industry? “Transit integration.”

Do you have a business mantra? “Bublr for all!”

From a business standpoint, who do you look up to? “Joe and Jennifer Bartolotta.”

What was the best advice you ever received?

Do you plan to hire any additional staff or make any significant capital investments in the next year? “We are currently at 57 stations and plan to significantly increase that number within a year. As a community-based nonprofit, our success will depend in large part on our fundraising success. In 2016, we more than tripled our ridership – this tells us the community is so ready for Bublr, and thus the need for more stations.”

What will be your company’s main

The co-authors of a bill repealing the state’s prevailing wage laws said at a recent hearing the requirements artificially increase the costs of construction projects. But Democrats and union members slammed the bill as an attack on workers that would drive down wages. State Sen. Bob Wirch (D-Kenosha) said it would exacerbate income inequality in the state. “Your bill makes it worse, driving people out of the middle class by cutting wages,” Wirch told the bill’s GOP co-authors, Sen. Leah Vukmir and Rep. Rob Hutton. But Vukmir and Hutton said prevailing wage laws, which set minimum salaries for construction projects, make those projects more expensive and shut out many non-union firms from bidding on them. Repealing the requirements, Vukmir said, would lead to hundreds of millions of dollars in savings over the years. “Government shouldn’t be paying for inflated wages on the backs of all taxpayers,” Vukmir told the Senate Committee on Labor and Regulatory Reform. Republicans last session repealed prevailing wages on local government projects, though the partial repeal didn’t apply to state construction projects. Gov. Scott Walker proposed a full repeal in his budget, but the Joint Finance Committee removed it as a non-fiscal policy item. Walker told reporters that he backs a repeal, whether it happens in the budget or in a separate bill. “As long as it happens, I think that’s one more tool to make sure the taxpayers get a better bang for their buck,” Walker said. Several union members spoke in opposition to the bill, saying it would lead to lower wages and layoffs as local companies find it harder to compete with out-of-state firms that underbid them. “That money will not stay here, will not be earned by local people,” said Dan Bukiewicz, the president of the Milwaukee Building & Construction Trades Council.

“Bring your best self to whatever you do.”

What’s the funniest thing that ever happened to you in your career?

Sally Sheperdson Executive director Bublr Bikes 275 W. Wisconsin Ave., Milwaukee Industry: Bike share Employees: Five full-time and another 15 part-time, seasonal and interns Family: Daughter, Mollie w w

“Setting up the start at a fundraising run only to realize at start time that I had lined up thousands of participants on Wisconsin Avenue in the wrong direction for the course!” is a media partner of BizTimes Milwaukee.


What do you like to do in your free time? “Yoga, running, reading and traveling.” n

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


Wisconsin’s unemployment rate dipped to 3.4 percent in March, its lowest since April 2000. n

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


leading edge ON TH E C ALEN D AR

MA DE I N M I LWA U K E E Brew City screen prints 36,000 shirts a week from its facility in the Third Ward.

1 2 3 4 5 6


7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

BizExpo 2017

Brew City Beer Gear Inc.

Creativity takes Brew City Brand beyond retail operation

Walk through the Milwaukee Public Market and it’s hard to miss Brew City Beer Gear’s Brew City Brand retail operation with T-shirts touting Milwaukee as “The Good Land” and others celebrating the city’s and the state’s culture. It would be much easier, however, to walk by Brew City Brand’s production facility just a few blocks away, at 240 N. Milwaukee St., without noticing it. From the Historic Third Ward facility, Brew City turns out shirts not just for its three retail stores, but also for a wholesale operation supplying customers like Nordstrom, Gap, Disney, Universal Studios, and gift shops at the Statue of Liberty and the Space Needle.

ARTHUR THOMAS (414) 336-7123 | Twitter: @arthur8823

“The cool thing about Brew City is the retail is only like 20 percent of their business,” said Todd Kavemeier, who recently joined the company as its first chief operating officer and has an eye on growing the wholesale business. Having retail locations also helps create opportunities for the wholesale business, said George Keppler, Brew City owner. It provides a shared experience when Brew City is talking with other small retail outlets and it also offers a testing ground for clothing concepts. “This is Milwaukee. I think this is a tough market – if it sells here, more than likely it has viability elsewhere,” Keppler said, suggesting if a product can overcome the city’s conservative Midwestern nature, it probably isn’t too outrageous to do well on the coasts. Brew City got its start from a Milwaukee tradition. George’s father, Rick Keppler, designed an illustration to help promote the Great Circus Parade in the 1980s, and before long was selling T-shirts and other merchandise


240 N. Milwaukee St., Suite 201, Milwaukee Industry: T-shirts and branded merchandise Employees: 45 from a kiosk in the Shops of Grand Avenue. Circus-related products proved to be a seasonal business, so he branched out into Milwaukee-branded products, as well. The company eventually expanded to selling shirts at Summerfest and the Wisconsin State Fair, which it still does. George Keppler said Brew City continued to grow and was forced to contemplate how it would expand in a changing retail environment. “We were sort of struggling with our retail identity for a while,” he said, noting the debate centered on expanding to suburban malls like Brookfield Square or Mayfair. That’s when the Public Market came along and Keppler saw an opportunity. “Our guts told us it was right and it was nice that the market was visionary enough to say ‘I see what you’re doing here,’” he said. The location has since grown to the point where inventory has to be restocked on a daily basis. Production hasn’t always been an in-house endeavor. It originally started as part of a consumer program for Miller Brewing Co., and an opportunity for sampling and experimenting with different techniques. “We literally had one little press in the back and we said, ‘We’re never going to get anything more than this one press,’ but then we liked the control of it and being able to print in ways that we like,” Keppler said. Brew City now has two automatic and five manual presses printing 36,000 shirts each week. Having the capability is one thing, but something has to be printed on the shirts. Keppler said the company has always prided itself on being creative. “We didn’t just put out T-shirts that just said ‘Milwaukee;’ we were always looking for a fun angle,” Keppler said. Ideas have historically come from members of the Keppler family and creativity now has extended beyond the graphics and images to the garment itself, with a beer pouch and now a bottle opener sewn into the shirt. “As we’ve been growing, we’re getting a lot of ideas from other people and staff,” Keppler said. “Although I’d say my dad, closing in on 80, still has the zingers. He drives me nuts; he’s like the Johnny Cash of the T-shirt world, constantly coming up with the hit songs.”

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

BizTimes Media will host the 2017 BizExpo on Wednesday, May 24, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, 1721 W. Canal St. in Milwaukee. Attendees at the 13th annual BizExpo will connect with hundreds of businesses, meet thousands of other professionals and learn from the area’s top business leaders. The day also includes the Women in Business breakfast, the Bravo/I.Q. Awards luncheon and the BizBash Cocktail Reception. Register in advance for free admission to the show floor and seminars. For more information or to register, visit


‘Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience and Finding Joy’ After the sudden death of her husband, Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg believed she and her children would never feel pure joy again. In her new book, “Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience and Finding Joy,” Sandberg and friend Adam Grant, a psychologist at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, talk about the steps Sandberg took to recover and rebound from her experience. “We are not born with a fixed amount of resilience,” Sandberg says, “It is a muscle that everyone can build.” “Option B” combines Sandberg’s personal insights – beginning with the moment she finds her husband, Dave Goldberg, collapsed on the gym floor – with Grant’s research on finding strength in the face of adversity. Sandberg explores how a broad range of people have overcome hardships including illness, job loss, sexual assault, natural disasters and the violence of war, and how their stories reveal the capacity of the human spirit to persevere and to rediscover joy. “Option B” is available at for $20.76.

leading edge NON P RO F IT N E W S


Employ Milwaukee to receive $150,000 health care employment grant

Getting into character

Employ Milwaukee, the county’s workforce development board, will receive $150,000 from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to strengthen relationships among health care employers and communitybased organizations as part of the firm’s national health care workforce initiative. The grant will support the efforts of the Center for Healthcare Careers of Southeastern Wisconsin, the collaboration among Employ Milwaukee and most of the region’s major health care providers – Froedtert Health, Aurora Health Care, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare and Columbia St. Mary’s – to build the state’s health care workforce. The funding will allow these employers to collectively hire 500 new employees from low-income zip codes in Milwaukee. “JPMorgan Chase was the first non-health system to provide funding for our demand-driven health care initiative in Milwaukee,” said Earl Buford, chief executive officer of Employ Milwaukee. “Together, we are working to make sure there is a steady and diverse pipeline of candidates to fill jobs in this high-growth industry.” Nationally, JPMorgan will provide $8.6 million to various workforce development and health care organizations to create job opportunities for low-income workers and to support the nation’s health care services.

——Maredithe Meyer

Last month, Marvin Bynum stood on stage in front of an audience as he made his first acting debut in 20 years. A real estate attorney at Godfrey & Kahn S.C., Bynum recently played Crooks in the University of Wisconsin-Washington County’s Theatre on the Hill production of “Of Mice and Men.” Bynum acted during high school and college, performing in his last show, “Into the Woods,” before his sophomore year at Arizona State University. Life got busy and Bynum had to put his acting hobby on the shelf until a friend organized the recent “Of Mice and Men” production and asked Bynum to be a part of it. “I was nervous coming in, especially doing rehearsals and looking at all these people who had been acting for a while,” Bynum said. “But once I was out there, it just felt natural.” The show was well received, leaving audience members feeling moved, and the cast received standing ovations on both production nights. Although he had to balance full days of work and full nights of rehearsals while also being a dad and a husband, Bynum said picking up his pastime again was worth it.

Marvin Bynum, right, plays Crooks in “Of Mice and Men.”

“I would love to do another production; it just has to be the right show and at the right time,” he said.

——Maredithe Meyer

“When our employees feel good about life, they’re going to bring it. This helps us make good on our pledge to elevate people and transform communities.” Robert Pedersen, President and CEO Goodwill Industries of North Central WI

Brandon Strobel, Goodwill Program Participant

Aurora Health Care helps businesses build healthier and happier workplaces. We offer more access to exceptional care, including more locations closer to home, more care options and world-class doctors, all at a cost that fits your bottom line. To hear the rest of Goodwill’s story and to learn how Aurora can help your company, visit

w w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


leading edge IN T HE NE I GH B OR H OOD


CGS Premier Versant is located in this Third Ward building.

Why is Versant based in the Third Ward?

New Berlin-based CGS Premier is planning to relocate to a new facility in Muskego that will be double the size of its current location. The manufacturer of mobile exhibits and displays is planning to break ground in June on a 65,000-square-foot building at the east end of Commerce Center Parkway, east of Moorland Road in the Muskego Business Park. The building will be developed by HSI Properties of Brookfield.

Versant Inc.

——Corrinne Hess

Neighborhood: Historic Third Ward Address: 316 N. Milwaukee St., Suite 280 Founded: 1972 Owner: Will Ruch Employees: 12

Will Ruch: “We moved from the suburbs down here two years ago. This is an ondemand economy that we’re in. Probably by the year 2020, nearly 45 percent or 50 percent of the workforce is going to be freelance. That’s not just our industry, that’s the world. When you look at a 45 percent contracted or freelance workforce, you need to be in an area that is central and easy for talent to come and go, and that’s the Third Ward.”

You’ve written about recruitment and talent attraction quite a bit. How does employer branding play into that?

Ruch: “What’s critical today in this new world work environment, this on-demand economy, is you really have to present a workplace story as to why somebody wants to connect and be a part of a team. Because they can go anywhere. You’ve got to have the talent piece in place if you’re going to deliver for the customers today. This philosophy that we’ve had for many years is, make sure your inside talent pool, your workforce, is very connected to what’s happening with your clients in the marketplace.”

Do you know the value of your business?


Eight key drivers to improve the value of your company by Nancy Mehlberg

6. The Monopoly of Control

Take a minute.

Think about what kind of business you’re building. If you wanted to sell your business tomorrow, could you? What if you had to? Would a buyer even be interested?

7. Customer Satisfaction •

It’s important to be able to answer those questions even if you are not considering a sale. Understanding the value of your business allows you to not only build an asset for your future, but also allows for continued growth and sustainability.

Understand your top and bottom line

2. Growth Potential •

Know your revenue potential and have confidence in your future income stream

3. Independence •

How dependent are you on specific customers, employees, vendors?

4. Working Capital •

Determine your working capital efficiency and cash flow needs

5. The Hierarchy of Recurring Revenue •


Analyze your repeat sales potential B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e

How loyal are your customers and their referral potential?

8. Management Depth •

Value can be assessed using eight key drivers: 1. Financial Performance

Understand your proprietary products, pricing strength and differentiation

How dependent is your business on you?

Using the Value Builder System™ and focusing on these eight drivers is statistically proven to increase the value of your business. You will identify ways to make your company even stronger – a valuable asset for every business, not just those considering a potential future sale. We will explore some of these areas in greater detail in future posts, and SVA will host a seminar on this topic in Madison at the UW-Madison’s Fluno Center on Wednesday, May 31st and on Thursday, June 1st at the Embassy Suites in Brookfield. For more information on these events, please visit n

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

Nancy Mehlberg Principal SVA Certified Public Accountants Web: Social: twitter: @SVAProServices linkedin: SVA Certified Public Accountants facebook: SVA Professional Services Contact: (262) 923-5156

Sponsored Content

leading edge News














Re: Illinois “I do see the Land of Lincoln as a land of opportunity for Wisconsin, if we are willing to take advantage of Illinois’ considerable woes.” — Kurt Bauer, Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce

Re: I-94 East-West expansion plans “This road – built in the 1960s and burdened with left-side ramps, narrow shoulders, short weaving lanes and 30,000 more cars per day than originally intended – is too important, too deteriorated, too congested and too unsafe to sit in limbo.” — Jim Villa, NAIOP Wisconsin

Re: Wisconsin’s tech economy

About 250 people attended the April 27 grand re-opening of the Two-Fifty office tower in downtown Milwaukee. Among them were Chad Griswold, Matt Rinka and Rocky Marcoux.

“Wisconsin ranked 11th among the 50 Cyberstates in percentage growth of tech establishments and 15th in the actual total of new tech companies, with 194. All but one of the top 14 states are larger than Wisconsin. It also ranked 25th in tech startups, a Cyberstates figure that suggests Wisconsin’s startup problem may well rest in other industry sectors.” — Tom Still, Wisconsin Technology Council

Do you support President Trump’s plan to cut the 35% corporate tax rate to 15%?

Yes No

57% 43%

For additional stories and daily updates, visit our website at...

Stay ahead of the competition. In this rapidly-changing business world, your company’s financial needs can quickly change. Whether you’re looking for resources large enough to match your ambition, or advice precise enough to guide your next decade, the team of experts at Old National is ready to help your business succeed. You will discover a personalized banking experience from Kevin and his Milwaukee team – backed by over 80 years of combined industry and financing knowledge. We’ve helped companies grow since 1834 and welcome the opportunity to do the same for you.

Kevin Anderson Milwaukee Region President

Serving Wisconsin with 46 locations including: Brookfield






Menomonee Falls


New Berlin


West Allis


w w | Member FDIC


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e



WARNING SIGNS HEART ATTACK WARNING SIGNS: Some heart attacks are sudden and intense, but most of them start slowly, with mild pain or discomfort. Here are some of the signs that can mean a heart attack is happening. ▶▶ CHEST DISCOMFORT. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain. ▶▶ DISCOMFORT IN OTHER AREAS OF THE UPPER BODY. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach. ▶▶ SHORTNESS OF BREATH. This may occur with or without chest discomfort. ▶▶ OTHER SIGNS. These may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.

Kim Hastings, President, CJ & Associates with her mom, Judy.

FAMILY – AT THE “HEART” OF CJ & ASSOCIATES For Kim Hastings, running CJ & Associates is a family affair. Her parents purchased the company 35 years ago and her dad, brother, sister-inlaw and husband continue to keep it thriving. Family has always been at the center of the business, a commitment Curt and Judy Rudy made from day-one. With the moto – “Its your space, make the most of it,” they know that business interiors are so much more than just desks and chairs. They treat their clients like family and help them create effective office environments that increase productivity and creativity. They are a small company with a big heart – committed to heart health – both inside the four walls of their offices in New Berlin and the greater community. Year-round they work to educate, celebrate and promote heart healthy lifestyles and the American Heart Association. In the past nine years they have raised more than $50,000 for the American Heart Association and raised awareness by wearing “red” every single Friday.

▶▶ S udden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body ▶▶ Sudden confusion, or trouble speaking or understanding

failure, the entire company rallied around her. And she began her involvement with the American Heart Association.

▶▶ Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes ▶▶ S udden trouble walking, dizziness or loss of balance or coordination ▶▶ Sudden, severe headache with no known cause

Judy lost her battle with heart disease four years ago. But CJ & Associates continues the fight in her memory. Kim is the Chair of the Go Red for Women Movement in Milwaukee this year. Go Red for Women inspires women to make lifestyle changes, mobilize communities, and shape policies to save lives. “We know heart disease is the number one killer of all Americans, but 80 percent of it is preventable” said Kim. “I believe the best leaders are those who lead by example. That is why CJ & Associates is doing everything we can to keep our hearts healthy. And the hearts of our employees and business partners.”

The connection to the American Heart Association began with Judy. As the matriarch of the family, Judy kept everything running. Although she was a busy mom, she still spent most of her days at the office helping out wherever she could. Friendly and welcoming, you could often find people in her office – visiting, sharing stories and asking for advice.

That includes participating in events like the Heart Walk and the Red Dress Dash and hosting lunch-and-learns for staff on a variety of wellness topics. In the common areas of the office you will find tributes to Judy. Fliers for healthy recipes and activities fill the bulletin boards. And they have definitely seen the benefits to the bottom line.

“My mom Judy was amazing! Incredibly kind and supportive – she was my rock,” said Kim. “Even though we worked together all day, I still called her every night on my way home. She had a way of putting the stresses of the day in perspective.”

“Our employees are healthier and happier,” Kim said. “We have very low turnover and have seen a decrease in our healthcare costs. We know that is tied to our focus on family and wellness.”

When Judy was diagnosed with congestive heart



In CJ & Associates’ heart-healthy space, they are certainly making the most of every day.

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


DIAL 9-1-1 FAST Heart attack and stroke are life-or-death emergencies — every second counts. If you suspect you or someone you are with has any of the symptoms of heart attack or stroke immediately call 9-1-1 or your emergency response number so an ambulance can be sent. Don’t delay — get help right away! For a stroke, also note the time when the first symptom(s) appeared. If given within 3 to 4.5 hours of the start of symptoms, a clot-busting drug may improve the chances of getting better faster.

KNOW YOUR NUMBERS! Go Red For Women is a movement that starts with you. Lead by example and make the time to “Know Your Numbers”. It’s knowledge that could save your life. Five numbers, that all women need to be aware of to take control of their heart health: 1. TOTAL CHOLESTEROL 2. HDL (GOOD) CHOLESTEROL 3. BLOOD PRESSURE 4. BLOOD SUGAR 5. BODY MASS INDEX (BMI) Knowing these numbers can help women and their healthcare provider determine risk for developing cardiovascular diseases. It’s time for all women to learn the most critical numbers in their life – their hearts depend on it.

w w





WHAT WHAT IS IS A A HEART HEART ATTACK? ATTACK? A HEART ATTACK occurs when A HEART ATTACK occurs when blood flow to the heart is blocked. blood flow to the heart is blocked.

CARDIAC ARREST occurs when CARDIAC ARREST occurs when the heart malfunctions and stops the heart malfunctions and stops beating unexpectedly. beating unexpectedly.

Cardiac arrest is triggered by an electrical Cardiac arrest is triggered by an electrical malfunction in the heart that causes an malfunction in the heart that causes an irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia). With its irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia). With its pumping action disrupted, the heart pumping action disrupted, the heart cannot pump blood to the brain, lungs cannot pump blood to the brain, lungs and other organs. and other organs.

Cardiac arrest is an Cardiac arrest is an “ELECTRICAL” “ELECTRICAL” problem. problem.

A heart attack is a A heart attack is a “CIRCULATION” “CIRCULATION” problem. problem.

A blocked artery prevents oxygen-rich blood from A blocked artery prevents oxygen-rich blood from reaching a section of the heart. If the blocked artery reaching a section of the heart. If the blocked artery is not reopened quickly, the part of the heart is not reopened quickly, the part of the heart normally nourished by that artery begins to die. normally nourished by that artery begins to die.


Blocked Artery Blocked Artery

WHAT HAPPENS WHAT HAPPENS Seconds later, a person becomes Seconds later, a person becomes unresponsive, is not breathing or is only unresponsive, is not breathing or is only gasping. Death occurs within minutes if gasping. Death occurs within minutes if the victim does not receive treatment. the victim does not receive treatment.

WHAT TO DO WHAT TO DO Cardiac arrest can be reversible in some Cardiac arrest can be reversible in some victims if it's treated within a few minutes. victims if it's treated within a few minutes. First, call 9-1-1 and First, call 9-1-1 and start CPR right away. start CPR right away. Then, if an Automated External Then, if an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is available, Defibrillator (AED) is available, use it as soon as possible. use it as soon as possible. If two people are available to If two people are available to help, one should begin CPR help, one should begin CPR immediately while the other immediately while the other calls 9-1-1 and finds an AED. calls 9-1-1 and finds an AED.

CARDIAC ARREST IS A CARDIAC ARREST IS A LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH RISK FACTORS: RISK FACTORS: Prior heart disease is a major risk Prior heart disease is a major risk factor for cardiac arrest. factor for cardiac arrest. ● A family history of cardiac arrest in a ● A family history of cardiac arrest in a first-degree relative is associated with first-degree relative is associated with an approximate 2-fold increase in risk an approximate 2-fold increase in risk of cardiac arrest. of cardiac arrest. ● ●

Arrhythmia Arrhythmia

Women have the same symptoms as men, Women have the same symptoms as men, but they might have slightly different but they might have slightly different symptoms, making them not think of heart symptoms, making them not think of heart attack. Women may have shortness of attack. Women may have shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting and they can have breath, nausea, vomiting and they can have back, neck or jaw pain. back, neck or jaw pain.

WHAT TO DO WHAT TO DO WHAT IS THE LINK? WHAT IS THE LINK? Most heart attacks do not lead to cardiac arrest. Most heart attacks do not lead to cardiac arrest. But when cardiac arrest occurs, heart attack is a But when cardiac arrest occurs, heart attack is a common cause. Other conditions may also disrupt common cause. Other conditions may also disrupt the heart’s rhythm and lead to cardiac arrest. the heart’s rhythm and lead to cardiac arrest.

Fast Fast action action can can save save lives. lives.

Even if you're not sure it's a heart Even if you're not sure it's a heart attack, call 9-1-1 or your attack, call 9-1-1 or your emergency response number. emergency response number. Every minute matters! It’s best to call Every minute matters! It’s best to call EMS to get to the emergency room right EMS to get to the emergency room right away. Emergency medical services staff can away. Emergency medical services staff can begin treatment when they arrive — up to an begin treatment when they arrive — up to an hour sooner than if someone gets to the hour sooner than if someone gets to the hospital by car. EMS staff are also trained to hospital by car. EMS staff are also trained to revive someone whose heart has stopped. revive someone whose heart has stopped. Patients with chest pain who arrive by Patients with chest pain who arrive by ambulance usually receive faster treatment at ambulance usually receive faster treatment at the hospital, too. the hospital, too.

Learn more about CPR Learn more about CPR or to find a course, go to or to find a course, go to 12

Symptoms of a heart attack may be Symptoms of a heart attack may be immediate and may include intense immediate and may include intense discomfort in the chest or other areas of discomfort in the chest or other areas of the upper body, shortness of breath, cold the upper body, shortness of breath, cold sweats, and/or nausea/vomiting. More sweats, and/or nausea/vomiting. More often, though, symptoms start slowly often, though, symptoms start slowly and persist for hours, days or weeks and persist for hours, days or weeks before a heart attack. Unlike with cardiac before a heart attack. Unlike with cardiac arrest, the heart usually does not stop arrest, the heart usually does not stop beating during a heart attack. The beating during a heart attack. The longer the person goes without longer the person goes without treatment, the greater the damage. treatment, the greater the damage.

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e ©2016, American Heart Association. 11/16 DS11719 ©2016, American Heart Association. 11/16 DS11719


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

innovations Zywave plans year of innovations for flagship product


roker Briefcase is not a new product for Wauwatosa-based Zywave Inc., which has offered it since its early days as a company, but throughout the year the product will be receiving a series of upgrades aimed at allowing the company’s customers to rethink what is possible for their businesses. ARTHUR THOMAS (414) 336-7123 Twitter: @arthur8823

Making a series of significant upgrades to the company’s flagship product, intended to function as a marketing library for insurance brokers, required multimillion dollar investments in product development, coordination across large portions of the company and a strategic approach to launching each upgrade. “We wanted them to stand on their own,” Dave O’Brien, Zywave chief executive officer, said of the product upgrades. He pointed out it would have taken less development time to do one big release in the fall, but a staggered approach allows brokers to absorb each of the changes as they come out. The first round of upgrades, released in April, includes new notifications alerting users to relevant content curated by Zywave market analysts. Broker Briefcase provides access to information on best practices, proven strategies and other materials. Zywave also has released its 2016 health plan design benchmark report and added to its suite of health care consumer-related materials, a response to the election of President Donald Trump and policies expected to be pushed by his administration. In June, the company plans to roll out an upgrade aimed at offering customers their own automated marketing agency. O’Brien noted most insurance brokers generate the majority of their business through referrals, but many don’t have a formal program for handling them. The June update will feature social media strategies and tools for putting together branded proposals and presentations.

An upgrade in mid-July will include a package of videos and other materials aimed at helping companies bring on and train new brokers. O’Brien said the industry’s average age is in the mid-50s and smaller firms struggle to have the scale or time to bring on new brokers, even if they are coming from similar roles in other industries. “It’s not an industry that’s gone out of its way to attract millennials in any way, shape or form,” O’Brien said. The final upgrade, planned for the fall, is the most complex. While brokers currently can access the product to get a general proposal, the updated version will create a customized version focused on specific issues customers or prospects might be concerned about. “It’s that innovation, making it think like a broker, that we get excited about,” O’Brien said. Pulling off several significant upgrades to a major product required plenty of time and investment, but O’Brien said there also should be a payoff for the business. The product management teams at Zywave have a challenging task because the company has plenty of other products to which it could devote resources. Making the decision about where to invest involves an approach similar to the TV show “Shark Tank,” as product managers are asked to make the business case for pushing ahead with projects. In the case of Broker Briefcase, the company was planning to migrate away from Microsoft Silverlight, which no longer is supported. While that investment was necessary and would make it easier to write new code, customers wouldn’t necessarily see the benefit, so O’Brien said it made sense to also push ahead with upgrades that customers would actually see. But coordinating the moving pieces, including technology, content, market data and user experience, certainly is challenging. “A lot of it is very good project management, just to make sure the communication lines are open,” he said. O’Brien emphasized the importance of building the new products in-house, where developers can look the CEO in the w w


eye and hear about why a project is moving in a certain direction. “It’s very easy and the numbers can be very compelling to offshore,” he said. “One of the secret ingredients we have is our people, and we’re not that secret about it.” But he added that being innovative requires asking people to stretch outside of their comfort zones, which can be a challenge for younger generations who have grown up under the spotlight of social media and pressures to perform in school. “We challenge people to challenge themselves,” O’Brien said, arguing it is okay to make mistakes and they should be expected. “If we’re not (making mistakes), then we’re not innovating enough.” He said the goal shouldn’t be just

Zywave Inc. Wauwatosa Innovation: Broker Briefcase product upgrades

small, incremental tweaks, but innovations that make it easier for customers to do their work. “That takes somebody willing to fall flat on their face and know that they’re safe doing do,” he said. n

What does


look like to you? The Josephs – Park Bank customers since 1993 Bonnie, Leon, Robert and Jake in the lobby of the Overlook on Prospect

Member FDIC

For the Joseph family, success is leaving a legacy for generations to come. Robert Joseph passionately set out to revive an iconic development he watched his grandfather build decades ago – Prospect Mall. He looked to his mentor and father, Leon, for advice, and he looked to Park Bank to stand behind him with the steadfast dependence he has relied on for over 20 years. The Overlook on Prospect now stands as a tribute to those who came before him. Learn more about their story at

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017



B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


real estate DEN



The proposed Griffin Hub Collision Center that was denied by the city’s Board of Zoning Appeals.

Jerry and Marie Arenas have been trying to sell their property at 800 W. Layton Ave. The steakhouse has been vacant for eight years. To the west is a trailer park. To the east is a lock and storage facility.

Alderman, Layton Avenue business owner at odds over future use of property


he owners of a former steakhouse building on Milwaukee’s south side that has been vacant for about eight years say a plan to improve the neighborhood is keeping them from selling their property. Jerry and Marie Arenas had an offer from James CORRINNE HESS P: (414) 336-7116 E: Twitter: @CorriHess

Griffin, owner of Griffin Ford in Waukesha, to purchase the property at 800 W. Layton Ave. in February for $825,000. Griffin walked away from the deal after the city’s Board of Zoning Appeals denied his request to turn the property 14

into a motor vehicle outdoor storage facility and body shop. Alderman Terry Witkowski, who represents the district, said he was opposed to both the use of the site and the 9-foot fence that was going to be erected on the east side of the property. But Arenas, who pays the city $24,000 per year in property taxes on the parcel, feels he has been railroaded. “I have a trailer park to the east of me, a lock and storage to the west, and my building has been empty for (almost) 10 years; How much more depressed can that area be?” Jerry Arenas said. “A solid guy who wants to create jobs and put up a building comes along and they deny him?” Jerry and Marie also own Palmer’s Steakhouse in Hartland. After almost 20 B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


years, they decided to walk away from the Layton Avenue location and sold the business to the restaurant manager and a group of investors, who changed the name to J. Roberts Porterhouse. After an unsuccessful run, the group closed the restaurant and gave the keys back to the Arenas in 2009. They held onto the property until 2012, when they sold it on a land contract to a group who planned to turn it into the Grillside Steakhouse. But that restaurant never opened and Jerry and Marie got the keys back again in March 2016. Arenas said he thought he would finally be rid of the property when Griffin came along in August 2016 with plans to open Griffin Hub Collision Center.

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

The deal originally was supposed to close in December, but was pushed back to February. The Board of Zoning Appeals denied the request at its February meeting. Griffin said from the beginning, the city made him and Arenas jump through hoops and spend a lot of money on the project. “We were working with the alderman and there were delays, but we were willing to give up some things and I thought it would get approved,” Griffin said. “Then we got to the meeting and it took a turn. We could have probably gone back and fought a little more, but I didn’t want to spend any more money chasing something they didn’t want in the first place.” Arenas blames Witkowski and also Aerotropolis Milwaukee, a 21-member public-private partnership to improve and

Alderman Terry Witkowski is hoping for a development at the site like what Perspective Design Inc. is building at 306 W. Layton Ave., which includes a Golden Corral restaurant.

attract development to the airport area. The group has been working with the Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission to create a development plan to identify where future growth and economic development should be occurring around the airport. During an interview with BizTimes in April, Witkowski used the denial of Griffin’s collision center as an example of the type of businesses Aerotropolis is trying to keep away from the neighborhoods closest to the airport. “I think we’ll have several small wins,” Witkowski said at the time. “And because we are all separate communities, we won’t know we have a win because it will be an Aerotropolis win, but it will be for the good of everyone.” But Witkowski said even without Aerotropolis, he would have opposed the collision center, which would have included 240 vehicle storage spaces. “It doesn’t fit in the area, and Griffin made no effort to educate us what he wanted to do there,” Witkowski said, adding that Griffin did not attend the BOZA

meeting, but was in his office afterward upset about the outcome. Thomas Schelonka, Griffin’s fixed operations director, did attend the meeting, according to the minutes. So did Thomas Gartner, a real estate attorney with Michael Best & Friedrich LLP, who represented the owner of the strip mall immediately across the street who opposed Griffin’s proposal. Witkowski said he would like to see something related to hospitality at the site. He pointed to the recently-approved Golden Corral restaurant and strip mall planned at 306 W. Layton Ave., in front of the existing Courtyard by Marriott hotel, as an example of the type of development he would like to see along Layton Avenue. “Anything in the hospitality industry could go there,” Witkowski said. “And Jerry is welcome to reopen his restaurant.” Arenas has no plans to do that. He is currently interviewing real estate brokers about selling the property and is hearing from them that Witkowski wants a hotel, restaurant or retail on the site. “Who is he to tell me what I can do with my property?” Arenas said. n w w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


FREE 1 D AY | 3 E V E N T S | 1 8 S E M I N A R S







Supporting Sponsors:

Lounge Sponsor:

Seminar Sponsor:

Meet your future customers at Wisconsin’s largest one-day business event. * As of 05.08.17 2nd Wind Exercise Equipment 360 Direct 88Nine Radio Milwaukee ABC of Wisconsin ActionCOACH - Business Coaching African American Chamber of Commerce (AACW) Alois Roofing and Sheet Metal Alverno College American Heart Association American United Taxi Anderson Ashton - Design/Build Applied Tech ARCOA Badger Tag & Label Corp. Bartolotta Restaurant Group BizTimes Media BSI (Building Service Inc.) Butters Fetting Company Inc. Cardinal Stritch University CarePlus Dental Plans Casino Party Planners Centec Security Systems, Inc. Central Office Systems Charles Schwab Citizens Bank CJ & Associates Color Ink Communications Engineering Company Concordia University Conspire! Creative Business Interiors CTS Connected Technology Solutions Datum Consulting Empower HR

Epic Color FacilityNow, Inc. Filament Communication Fred Astaire Dance Studios GoGeddit Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin Granular Greater Brookfield Chamber of Commerce Hatch Staffing iHeart Media Innovative Signs J.H. Findorff & Son Inc. Kelley Communications Inc. Lamers Bus Line Lands’ End Business Outfitters Lanex LLC Life Navigators Majic Productions Marquette University Marquette University High School MC Services Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC) Mid-State Insurance Milwaukee Athletic Club Milwaukee Bucks MCFI (Milwaukee Center for Independence) New Era Graphics New Horizons Office Furniture Resources Ogden & Company Olive Promotions Pavlic Vending & Modern Coffee Power and Light Innovations Promotion Pros

Prudential Advisors River Run Rodizio Grill Brazilian Steakhouse Sam’s Club Schober Schober & Mitchell Score SE SEEK Careers/Staffing Inc. Sign-A-Rama/Screen & Stitch Sprint Stamm Technologies Summit Credit Union SVA Certified Public Accountants SWICKtech The Equitable Bank The Executive Committee The Rauser Agency The Spire Group Think Local Tobin Solutions Total Mechanical Town Bank Tri City National Bank United Performing Arts Fund Upper Iowa University-Milwaukee UW Whitewater Walcheske & Luzi LLC Waukesha County Business Alliance WBON/WWE WCTC Center for Business Performance Solutions Wild Planet Wisconsin Aviation Wisconsin Institute of CPAs (WICPA) WorkWise Software WurkHub Digital Marketing

To become an exhibitor, contact Linda Crawford at 414-336-7112 or

: Seminars

3:45 - 4:30

2:45 - 3:30

1:45 - 2:30

12:00 - 12:45

10:45 - 11:30

9:30 - 10:15






Tom Myers, Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren & Tim Nettesheim, Husch Blackwell

Christine McMahon, McMahon & Associates LLC

Dave Molenda, founder, Positive Polarity




Chris Remington, digital strategist



BUSINESS GROWTH STRATEGIES Alonzo Kelly, CEO, Kelly Leadership Group

DISCOVER YOUR BRAND PERSONALITY Heather Mangold, owner, Mangold Creative Seminar Room A Sponsor:


Rob Grede, president & founder, The Grede Company

BUSINESS GROWTH STRATEGIES Alonzo Kelly, CEO, Kelly Leadership Group

EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE FOR LEADERS Bruce Kestelman, instructor, Center for Business Performance Solutions at WCTC



Christine Hill, executive director, Future Milwaukee


M&A STRATEGIES Ann Hanna, managing director, Schenck M&A Solutions

THREE LOW COST STRATEGIES FOR EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT Andrew Marris, learning and development manager, MRA



Jim Palzewicz, professional EOS Implementer, ACTION COACH of Elm Grove

Andrew Weiland, editor, BizTimes Media



Featured Main Stage Events at


Forging the future:

women-owned businesses shape the economy Wednesday, May 24, 2017 | 7:30AM - 9:30AM | Potawatomi Hotel & Casino Women-owned firms are on the rise. The number of firms owned by women grew 26.8 % in the previous 5 years tracked, from 7.8 million to 9.9 million businesses. In contrast, the number of all firms increased 2% during the same period. Women-owned firms accounted for $1.4 trillion in receipts during that period, growing at a rate of 18.7%, outpacing overall growth by 7% during the same time frame. Source: 2016 U.S. Census Survey of Business Owners Join BizTimes Media and moderator Kimberly Kane (5) for a candid conversation with a panel of Milwaukee-area women business owners as they talk about competition, culture, leadership and personal motivation. Panelists include: Linda Katz, CEO, Molded Dimensions, Inc. (1) Crystal Miller, president, Frontida Assisted Living (2) Holly N. Ritz, president, The Penworthy Company, LLC (3)


Dawn Vogelsang, president, Hamacher Resource Group, Inc. (4)



Woman Executive of the Year: Wendy Baumann, president and CVO


WWBIC – Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative

Register Today! Sponsors:

Supporting Sponsor:

Event Partner:


$45/person | $360/table of 8

Presented By:

Wednesday, May 24, 2017 5:00PM - 7:00PM Potawatomi Hotel & Casino Register today! Let the high energy from the BizExpo floor carry over to the evening. Join us for the launch of the newly redesigned BizTimes Milwaukee magazine at the BizBash. Enjoy music, strolling entertainment and light hors d’oeuvres while you relax and recap the day with current and new connections over a favorite beverage.


Presented By:


Featured Main Stage Events at

Bold Leaders. Bright Ideas. Wednesday, May 24, 2017 | 11:30AM - 1:30PM | Potawatomi Hotel & Casino Congratulations to the 2017 Bravo! Entrepreneur and I.Q. (Innovation Quotient) award winners. “Do. Or do not. There is no try.” - Yoda, Jedi Master. Join us to celebrate the entrepreneurs and business innovators whose ideas and hard work make the Milwaukee region a better place. BizTimes’ Bravo! Entrepreneur and I.Q. Awards honor the region’s most creative and successful entrepreneurs, as well as the most innovative products, services or processes developed by Southeastern Wisconsin companies. This year’s Bravo! Entrepreneur Lifetime Achievement Award winner and featured speaker is Carol Schneider, founder and owner of SEEK Careers and Staffing. Carol will share key moments from her 46-year entrepreneurial journey, reflecting on what she’s learned that has helped her grow as a successful business leader and committed member of the community. Lifetime Achievement Award: Carol Ann Schneider, SEEK Careers/Staffing

Meet our 2017 winners! Bravo! Entrepreneur Awards winners:

I.Q. Awards for Innovation winners:

Ben Caya, Spike Brewing


Tami Gemmell, Azana Salon and Spa

Stormwater Solutions Engineering, LLC

Mark Grosskopf, New Resources Consulting

True Process, Inc.

Eric Haberichter, Access HealthNet

Dynamic Solutions Worldwide LLC

Thomasina Ivy, TMI Consulting, LLC

Color Ink, Inc

Michael Jurken, Majic Productions

Braise Restaurant Supported Agriculture (RSA)

Neil Karolek, TLX Technologies, LLC

Classmunity LLC

John McWilliam, SCATHAIN

Lynch & Associates - Engineering Consultants, LLC

Diane Omdahl, i65


Regional Spirit Award: The event will be emceed by WISN-12 anchors Melinda Davenport and Ben Wagner.

Impact100 Greater Milwaukee

Register today! Sponsors:

Supporting Sponsors:

$55/person | $440/table of 8

Presented By:

Warner Grand Theatre


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

cover story

T he




isitors to the Warner Grand Theatre must sign a waiver acknowledging the potentially dangerous conditions in the building, which has been vacant for two decades. The floorboards beneath the aged carpeting in its aisles are warped and uneven. Its seats are stained and worn. The plaster behind the stage has cracked off in a large swath. A giant scar rings the room where a ceiling once divided the space into two theaters – a concession Marcus Corp. made to consumer trends before movie palaces like this one were replaced by suburban multiplexes. Mark Niehaus sees beyond the dilapidated concession stand and the lack of ground floor bathrooms. He can picture the stage being extended beyond the current rear barrier of the theater, so it’s large enough to fit a whole orchestra. He sees the ornate plaster and metal décor being restored to its former glory and hears violin bows being pulled across strings as the audience filters in. Niehaus, president and executive director of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, is leading a bid to renovate the Warner Grand to become the symphony’s new home. First, the MSO faces the monumental task of raising $120 million to make the move and the financial stability of the nonprofit a reality.

REVENUE MODELS During the Great Recession, philanthropic donors around the country pivoted away from the performing arts and toward social services. Milwaukee was no exception. Performing arts groups like the MSO

Mark Niehaus w w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e

went through lean times. In 2014, the MSO had to seek $5 million in emergency donations to avoid closing up shop. It slashed the budget with layoffs and benefit restructuring, while adding more performances to bring in additional revenue. The organization made it through the crisis and has been working to recover in the ensuing years. Its 2016-’17 season allocation from the United Performing Arts Fund was $2.55 million, more than any other group. Its fiscal 2017 budget is $18 million, with 64 percent expected to come from contributions like UPAF’s. Ideally, just one-third would come from contributions, with another third in earned revenue from ticket sales and concert fees, and the last third from investment income off its endowment. So far, the MSO has raised $76 million for its capital campaign, which is expected to decrease contributions to 56 percent of revenue. While the organization isn’t releasing names, it said more than 50 donors have given substantial gifts so far to help it move out of The Marcus Center for the Performing Arts. “Really the reason this project has had so much momentum is because it’s a civic project that goes beyond just the symphony,” Niehaus said. “This isn’t just the symphony saying, ‘Feed me.’ This is the symphony saying, ‘We can rationalize our business model, we can save an historic gem that likely will be lost if we don’t do this and we can be a catalyst for Milwaukee’s main street, West Wisconsin Avenue.” UPAF, which provides annual operating funding for 15 performing arts groups 21

in southeastern Wisconsin, also provides a boost for special campaigns in some situations. “In the case with the building, (the symphony is) really running this independently from UPAF,” said Deanna Tillisch, president and chief executive officer of UPAF. “They keep us informed on a regular basis. We certainly have a vested interest in what’s happening because we think it’s important that Milwaukee has a symphony.” The Milwaukee Ballet, on the other hand, has sustained its financial health through a diverse revenue stream, including its ballet school. It thrives on earned revenue. Together, ticket sales for its Marcus Center performances and school tuition make up 62 percent of the organization’s revenue. Its 2017 budget is $6.4 million. “Milwaukee Ballet has always run a tight ship,” said Michael Pink, artistic director. “Like many arts organizations, not just in Milwaukee but across the nation, we have observed gradual changes in the degree of corporate sponsorship for the arts. However, we are in the fortunate position to have been able to increase our earned revenue throughout the past years.” The Florentine Opera Co. has a $3.3 million budget for 2017, and brings in about 25 percent earned revenue. It performs across four venues, including the Marcus Center. To some degree, performing arts groups in Milwaukee do compete for audience, funding and venues, said William Florescu, general director of the Florentine. “We’re a midsized city and if you look at the amount of offerings that we have in this city, it’s incredible in relation to our size,” he said. “That’s both FLORESCU an opportunity and a challenge, because how thin can you spread it all?” The Milwaukee Repertory Theater has been able to attain a high proportion of earned revenue, at 63 percent. It is expected to bring in $12.6 million in revenue this year, said Chad Bauman, BAUMAN managing director. 22

The Rep is putting on 630 performances of 12 plays this season across four venues. It owns three of the theaters in which it performs, which is not always ideal, Bauman said. “What a lot of people don’t understand is the cost to maintain and operate those venues over time is often vastly under-projected,” he said. For example, The Rep has had to replace a roof for $100,000, upgrade a fire system for $325,000 and stop a building from sinking for $2 million in the past three years. “The pro is that you control the operations of them,” Bauman said. “I think the con is that you’ve got to pay for them – not just the creation of the venue, but over time the maintenance, the operations, everything.” That’s something The Marcus Center knows all too well. When the MSO departs, it will have an $850,000 revenue shortfall to fill, said Paul Mathews, president and CEO. “We’d prefer that (MSO) stay, but we understand that they are pursuing the possibility of their own hall,” Mathews said. “So if they choose to go there, we’ll certainly work with them on a transition plan.” Matthews said the MSO departure opens up opportunities for the ballet or Florentine to add more performances, but much of the revenue difference will likely be made up by selling more seats at existing performances. “Our first responsibility is the revenue impact,” Mathews said. “We have a history of balanced budgets here and we intend to continue that. We’re not expecting the ballet and the opera to fill up the majority of those weeks by any means.” It also doesn’t plan to fill up the 20 open weeks with Broadway series shows, because the market for the shows Marcus brings in is not big enough to support that. But it may add another week or two of Broadway and some one-off commercial events. The Marcus Center has multiple revenue sources, including three smaller halls inside the center, a parking structure, a gallery and a banquet hall for private events. It hopes to eventually redevelop the parking structure into a mixed-use development to pull in additional revenue.

AUDIENCE ATTRACTION Alex Barry moved from New York to Milwaukee in 2005 to handle traffic B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e



cover story

Michael Pink, artistic director of the Milwaukee Ballet.

operations for the Marquette Interchange project in his job as an engineer at AECOM. He immediately was drawn to the city’s arts scene. “I found that I really liked (Milwaukee) and a big part of the draw for me has been the performing arts scene,” Barry said. “It was the first professional ballet that I’d ever seen live and onstage and I was stunned by the professionalism and the quality of the work.” Barry, 63, now subscribes both to the Milwaukee Ballet and to the Florentine Opera. He sees how Milwaukee can compete with other cities for talent because of these assets. But one challenge is introducing people to the performing arts for the first time. “I’ve taken young colleagues from work. I’ve taken them to the opera, I’ve taken them to the ballet and they’re blown away,” Barry said. “You’ve got to get people in the seat the very first time and I think the majority of them, after that, will be sold on it. It’s that initial hesitancy.” By their very nature, arts groups are built to take creative risks and try new concepts. But it can be challenging to strike a balance between the avant-garde and the performance that will bring large crowds in the door. The Florentine puts on about 50 community performances per year, and several are popular operas, such as “Aida” and “La Boheme.” It hires up-and-coming international singers to come in and perform the classics with its Florentine Opera Chorus, as well as relatively unknown operas. “Opera still has a large traditional au-

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

Leading artists Nicole Teague-Howell and Davit Hovhannisyan rehearse "Mirror Mirror" in the Milwaukee Ballet's studios.

dience,” Florescu said. “Ten years from now, this will be a different discussion, but right now the challenge is you still have to do the traditional…but then you have a whole new era of audience that gets it a different way. The paradox here is that while you know that ‘Aida,’ for instance, will sell a lot of tickets, it’s also one of the most expensive operas to put on.” “I look to find a balance between the programming of new works and pieces of historical value,” Pink said. “My goal is to balance audience expectation with artistic aspiration.” Entertainment options abound in the digital age, but the performing arts groups in town simply take that as a sign they should market themselves on social media, step up community engagement


the stage. It’s really more about having that experience. Many of the participants share it on social media.” “We can use digital media to our advantage; will it engage people who have no interest in dance? Maybe. I don’t see us as competing in the media entertainment market,” Pink said. “If you already have an interest in dance then you know nothing supersedes the impact of the live performance.” The ballet supports a dance-oriented film each year at the Milwaukee Film Festival and has collaborated with young professional groups NEWaukee and FUEL Milwaukee to bring ballet to a millennial audience. It offers extras like backstage tours and open rehearsal at the Milwaukee Art Museum, and aims to broaden its


and collaborate with other groups. “Even if you were just going to say the competition is amongst the performing arts, it’s a pretty crowded field,” Florescu said. “But we also compete against forprofit entertainment options, as well, and there’s a lot of projects going on in Milwaukee right now.” “I don’t know that I would say (audience attraction is) a challenge,” said Julia Glawe, executive director of the Milwaukee Ballet. “People, regardless of their age, are looking for experiences. It’s GLAWE not just about sitting in your seat and watching something from

Annia Hidalgo, a leading artist in the Milwaukee Ballet stretches at rehearsal.


cover story reach with offerings like sensory-friendly performances and Tour de Force lessons for children with disabilities. Last month, the Milwaukee Ballet, Florentine Opera and Marcus Center announced an integrated programming showcase called the ArtsBridge Project to reach new and crossover audiences. The Florentine and The Rep also have community outreach programs, working with schools and other organizations to introduce children to the arts. “We’re having a lot of luck with making inroads with young audiences and more diverse audiences,” Florescu said. “We’re having a lot of diversity on stage and I think that makes a difference.” The Rep has seen audience attendance increase over the past several years, which Bauman attributed to its mix of plays. “One of the great strengths of (multiple venues) is everybody can find themselves at The Rep,” he said. “One day we might be doing a new play around Muslim American themes. The next day we might be doing a classic American musical. The

next day we might be doing ‘To Kill a Mockingbird.’ We have the ability to reach multiple audience segments at one time.”

ARTFORMS In a well-worn two-story building at Fifth Street and National Avenue are the Milwaukee Ballet’s studios and offices.

“We don’t need to reinvent the core product… but we can do a better job of updating the delivery method for the 21st century.” — Mark Niehaus, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra The ballet’s 23 professional company dancers have just returned from a twoweek break and are beginning rehearsals for Pink’s Snow White piece, “Mirror Mirror.” In a practice studio, Pink, known for his character- and emotion-driven storytelling, runs through a scene with

2212 E. Moreland Blvd.

Real Estate Management

3655 N. 126th St.

Serving Diverse Tenant Needs

OFFICE SPACE WAREHOUSE SERVICE CENTER INDUSTRIAL RETAIL SPACE Locations in Brookfield, Pewaukee, Waukesha, Hartland, Menomonee Falls, Mukwonago, Wauwatosa, Oconomowoc, and New Berlin 24

several leading artists, who move around large silver trees from the set. Wiry and muscular, professional and second company dancers clad in spandex pass among three other studios, some to work on their parts in pairs or alone. In one studio, a half dozen members of the corps de ballet rehearse a group dance

3400 Intertech Dr.

262-513-3750 B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


with ballet master Denis Malinkine. In all, the dancers have more than seven hours of structured rehearsal each day. Around the corner, three tailors sew costumes for “The Nutcracker” and mock up the outfit patterns for Pink’s “Beauty and the Beast,” which will make its world premiere in April 2018. In a nearby room, shoe coordinator Krista Allenstein sits among neatly organized stacks of clear boxes, each marked with a dancer’s name and the custom shoemaker he or she prefers, sewing boot covers onto shoes to go with the “Mirror Mirror” costumes. In the afternoon, a group of children will crush in for Milwaukee Ballet School & Academy classes. There are about 600 children enrolled in the school, who attend class in Walker’s Point, Brookfield and Fox Point. The popular school brings in about 23 percent of the ballet’s annual revenue, as well as future talent. It could be larger, but is capped by space and student-teacher ratio, according to the ballet. “Our Milwaukee Ballet School & Academy is a place where learning to dance is a recreational pastime or a vocation,” Pink said. “One of our newest professional dancers, Lizzie Tripp, is a graduate of our program.” As reported by BizTimes in December, the Milwaukee Ballet plans to build a 40,000-square-foot, one-story building to house its new headquarters in Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward. The plan was confirmed by neighborhood Alderman Robert Bauman and Joe Vella, president of the Italian Community Center, which has agreed to sell the ballet a 1.8-acre parcel on its property for the project. Months later, the ballet still remains tight-lipped about

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

the plan and has declined to comment. The Milwaukee Ballet has been in its current building since 1980. For the 2016’17 season, its professional company is putting on 32 performances at The Marcus Center. At the Marcus Center, the MSO shares stage time in the center’s Uihlein Hall with the Ballet, which becomes a major challenge in December when the ballet is performing the Nutcracker, Neihaus said. Scheduling conflicts at the Marcus Center have been a major reason the MSO has wanted its own venue. MSO performances – of which there are about 135 per 40-week season – are led by music director Edo de Waart. de Waart has appeared as a guest conductor with every major orchestra in the world. He has been assistant conductor to Leonard Bernstein of the New York Philharmonic, and Bernard Haitink at the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Holland. He has worked for the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and for the Netherlands Radio and Television Music Centre. He has conducted in San Francisco, Minnesota, The Netherlands, Sydney and Hong Kong. He joined MSO in 2009, and will conclude his tenure as music director with Mahler’s Symphony No. 3, ending May 28. Over the past several years, the MSO has started to offer more themed performances of music from popular movies, like “Harry Potter” and “La La Land.” In this way, it can attract new audiences and give them an idea of what to expect, Niehaus said. With the new venue, his vision is to make going to the symphony an experience from the moment someone walks in the door, similar to going to a baseball game at Miller Park, he said. “All orchestras, and I believe theaters and ballets and museums, face what I call attendance anxiety,” Niehaus said. “Attendance anxiety is relieved when you know what to expect. By giving people these signposts of a themed concert or some of these movie things or a pops offerings, you know you’re going to be seeing something that is not completely unfamiliar to you. He insists the symphony is for anyone, and he plans to curate an experience the MSO controls at the Warner Grand. That could include a dinner themed around that night’s performance, he said. “Do we care when you clap? No. Do you have to wear a tie? No. “We don’t need to reinvent the core


Interior architectural elements of the Warner Grand Theatre.

product. Beethoven and Brahms and Mozart and … the classical composers alive today are just as alive and vibrant as they ever were, but we can do a better job of updating the delivery method for the 21st century.”

VENUE CONFLICTS The MSO isn’t the first orchestra in the country to move into a refurbished movie palace downtown. They are regularly retrofitted to be symphony halls. “It would be fun to think that I’m some kind of genius coming up with a master plan for the symphony,” Niehaus said. “The bottom line is this idea of the symphony moving to this building has

existed since way before me. “ In fact, Niehaus was principal trumpet in the orchestra when it conducted an acoustical test in 2001 in the Warner Grand, and it sounded incredible, he said. “I remember vividly being able to hear the orchestra in a way I never had before,” he said. “It’s much deeper than it is wide. The shape of a shoebox is better for orchestra acoustics. This very high balcony is fantastic for acoustics because the sound doesn’t get trapped under the balcony. All of the decoration, it all deflects sounds in wonderful ways. They didn’t build any of it for acoustical reasons. We got really lucky.”

While the MSO considered moving to the Warner Grand then, there wasn’t an appetite for a capital campaign because the Calatrava addition was being built at the Milwaukee Art Museum. There was also too much traffic on North Second Street to expand in that direction because it was a major artery to the highway before the Marquette Interchange was rebuilt. And the MSO’s need wasn’t as great because there were no Broadway shows at the Marcus Center during its season. Now, with the help of architecture firm Kahler Slater, the MSO is moving forward. It plans to bump the back wall of the L-shaped theater into North Second

Street so it can create a larger stage that can be seen from all areas of the theater, as well as extend that east end of the theater with an addition that would replace the building next door, to enlarge the lobby so it can hold a gathering of 1,700 people before and after performances. It will install all new seats for a 1,750-person capacity, put in bathrooms and elevators, and create a second floor gathering space for revenue-generating private events. The symphony has garnered a $750,000 grant and street reconstruction assistance from the city to assist in moving the rear wall while retaining its historic and structural integrity. It also has



Best Version Media LLC Fairchild Equipment Gross Automation


L.H. Krueger and Son, Inc. Lakeland Supply, Inc. Metal-Era, Inc. OwnersEdge, Inc. Prairie Financial Group Ruekert & Mielke, Inc. Winter, Kloman, Moter & Repp, S.C.


AWARDS LUNCHEON Friday, June 9, 2017 | 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Country Springs Hotel & Conference Center | 2810 Golf Road, Pewaukee


General admission: $75 per person/$750 for corporate table of 10 Alliance member discount: $60 per person/$550 for corporate table of 10 w w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


Reserve your seat today! B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


“We love the LED lights! This looked like a dungeon before we called Warehouse-Lighting!” LED Lighting is extremely cost-effective since it produces more light with less energy than traditional inefficient technologies. New Berlin-based has been supplying commercial and industrial companies with light fixtures and related products for over a decade. We pride ourselves on sourcing and delivering energy-efficient lighting solutions to our customers for a great value. We’re known for our high level of customer service, and we’ll be happy to provide a FREE lighting layout plan to help get you going in the right direction! Give us a call now to talk about how to get started and what it takes to earn your rebate. SAM Registered, Cage Code 6TXH2, DUNS 96-202-4324, NAICS# 335122, 335121, 335129

1-888-571-7878 2805 South 160th Street New Berlin, WI 53151

BRIDGE TO BUSINESS — FOR PEOPLE WHO CAN ACTUALLY BUILD ONE. Connecting engineers with business know-how.

Bridge to Business for Engineers is an immersive, 14-day experience to give early-career engineers business fundamentals. The course is offered by Marquette University’s Opus College of Engineering and College of Business Administration and sponsored by Milwaukee-based manufacturer Rexnord. Students receive a blend of classroom and real-world interactive learning opportunities, and study the integration of business disciplines — accounting, finance, information systems, legal/regulatory, marketing, management, and supply chain management — all with an engineering overlay. Register now for one of two sessions: Session 1 begins May 22. Session 2 begins June 26. Learn more at Phone: 414.288.EXEC (3932) Email:


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


initial approvals from the State of Wisconsin and the National Parks Service for historic preservation tax credits, which will cover 40 percent of the cost of the historic restoration of the theater. The whole project is expected to cost the MSO about $75 million, and the remainder of the funds being raised will go toward strengthening the orchestra’s balance sheet by paying off a $6.5 million pension liability, adding $20 million to its endowment and providing bridge operational funding until the MSO moves in. The long-term success of the symphony depends on raising the additional funds beyond construction costs. If the fundraise goes as planned, construction will begin in the fall and the MSO will be playing concerts in the Warner Grand by fall 2019. This move is necessary because there were too many scheduling conflicts at the Marcus Center, particularly in December, Niehaus said. “We need less in back-of-house amenities than the opera, the ballet or Broadway does,” he said. “They need a lot of dressing rooms. They need a scene shop. They need to raise and lower a curtain before the concert. It’s a theater. It’s a different experience than a concert hall. Most cities our size have a dedicated theater and a dedicated concert hall. So what we’ve been asking is for one room, Uihlein Hall, to serve the symphony, the opera, the ballet, and most recently in the last decade, Broadway. If there were 465 days in a year and two Decembers in that year, we could make it work.” The ballet hasn’t thought much about the MSO moving out of The Marcus Center, Glawe said. “If the symphony moves out of the Marcus Center, we know that there’s an opportunity for other things,” she said. “It could (mean more ballet performances), but it’s not something that we’ve really addressed internally yet.” The Florentine Opera Co. relies on the MSO for several of its performances at The Marcus Center, so it would be impacted by the change in venue. The Warner Grand would not be appropriate for opera, Florescu said. “That would involve them bouncing back and forth between two different houses and we’re researching how that would work,” Florescu said. “Nothing exists in a vacuum, so one move impacts what other folks are doing.” The Florentine would, on the other

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

hand, have opportunities to put on more performances at The Marcus Center if the MSO departs, he said. It’s evaluating the costs and opportunities in a waitand-see approach.

FUNDRAISING FEATS As downtown Milwaukee is undergoing a renaissance a number of civic entities besides the MSO, including the Milwaukee Public Museum (which needs a new building) and Discovery World (which is planning an expansion), are also working on large capital projects. Fundraising for numerous big projects could put a strain on Milwaukee’s philanthropic community. How many of them can be supported? There are a lot of asks out there, but there’s also momentum for the MSO, Tillisch said. “They have such strong support in the community and people are really enthusiastic and energized about this move for them,” she said. “There’s an energy right now, with all the other things that are happening in this community. The symphony is right up there as a project that people are really excited about.” UPAF saw contributions dip during the recession, but over the past five years its annual campaign has grown 23.5 percent. “This is an incredibly generous community and the reason why people don’t give is because they haven’t been asked,” Tillisch said. “There are untapped wallets in this community." Chad Bauman said Milwaukeeans tend to donate only when there is a crisis for a nonprofit, such as when MAM’s artwork was being damaged by water. “As much as Milwaukee focuses on crisis in some cases, there’s got to be an equal emphasis on fundraising for opportunity,” he said. “Milwaukee is competing now with cities like Oklahoma City and Cleveland, of all places, and Austin and Kansas City. These are cities that really invest in opportunity and vision and it’s paying off for them. Quite frankly, Milwaukee is going to be in a competition for talent. We need to invest in a visionary future for Milwaukee that’s going to put us where we need to be to be competitive.” “It’s sort of a chicken or an egg because if we don’t have these assets, attracting talent and businesses to the community will be difficult,” Tillisch said. “We need to have the cultural assets, we need to have the sports, because it puts us on the map. This community realizes that.” n

special report

water technology

The space between the new Zurn headquarters and the Global Water Center has yet to be developed, but leaders of The Water Council say there has been plenty of progress in making Milwaukee a water hub.

Is The Water Council just getting started, or have its dreams evaporated?


f you don’t follow the water industry, it can be difficult to see some of the progress being made by The Water Council in positioning Milwaukee as a freshwater technology hub. The organization just dropped plans to develop the second Global Water Center, no other projects have broken ground between the new Zurn Industries LLC headquarters and the original Global Water Center, and the 25 startups that have gone through the BREW Accelerator have created just 65 jobs. On the other hand, the Global Water Center is full, The Water Council is partnering with national labs to commercialize research, corporations are signing on for their own accelerators, there’s plenty of international interest, and this year’s Water Leaders Summit will feature two of the best-known water authors, Charles

ARTHUR THOMAS, staff writer

Fishman and Seth Siegel. “I would have never expected it to be what it is today,” said Rich Meeusen, a co-founder of The Water Council and current co-chair. “I didn’t expect to be around to see it.” Meeusen, who is also chairman, president and chief executive officer of Brown Deer-based Badger Meter Inc., said it’s frustrating, at times, that even as The Water Council has plenty of other initiatives that are doing well, setbacks receive more attention. “Milwaukee never believes we can be great at anything,” Meeusen said, noting Global Water Center II wasn’t even in the plans a few years ago. The second building was challenged by a lack of tenants seeking large spaces. Lee Swindall, a Water Council board member, said the Water Council now is looking at w w


a $600,000 investment to re-engineer the Global Water Center I space to accommodate those who were interested in the new facility, and both he and Dean Amhaus said the council might buy the building. “Right now, we’re turning people away from the first building,” said Amhaus, president and chief executive officer of The Water Council. Matthew Bednarski, a team leader for Milwaukee-based engineering firm Graef ’s water business, said he makes it a point to be in the building at least once or twice a week and the company has four or five people who rotate through its GWC office on a regular basis. “I do think just being there, because of the collaborative nature of the building itself and the tenant makeup, there’s always a conversation going on that you can be a part of,” Bednarski said.

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e

He added the Global Water Center also provides a chance to learn about the latest technology and take that knowledge to customers. It also doesn’t hurt that he often sees Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District executive director Kevin Shafer, one of Graef ’s larger clients. The Water Council also is becoming an international organization, partnering with the German Water Partnership and regularly hosting international delegations. “It seems that in every country we go to, water creates the greatest amount of excitement,” said Katy Sinnott, vice president of international business development at WEDC, suggesting there’s almost too much interest in The Water Council at times. “The minute they hear about it, Dean has delegations at his door.” The Water Council recently sought to concentrate its international efforts, 27

Keep Business Flowing “The attorneys at Reinhart impressed me and my team with their responsiveness and diligence. Their negotiating acumen and attention to detail were key to helping us acquire additional technologies that will give us the potential to increase our sales, production and workforce.” Rich Meeusen Chairman, President & CEO Badger Meter, Inc. ⋅ 414.298.1000

The WMEP proudly supports The Water Council in their advancement of the Alliance for Water Stewardship’s international water standard.

Contact Greg Gasper at at the WMEP to learn how your organization can benefit by implementing the Alliance for Water Stewardship standard. For more information, please visit: or


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


Amhaus said. The plan was to focus on opportunities in Israel and India, but it didn’t take long for other countries to come back into the picture. Amhaus ended up joining a WEDC trade mission to China, where Sinnott said Wisconsin companies could deliver systems for China’s national project to capture 75 percent of storm runoff in dozens of “sponge cities.” “Solutions that are developed here locally are the ones that are going to be applied globally,” Amhaus said. “If we can indeed grow the opportunities for our companies here, that has a translation back to growth in the economy.” In addition to the partnership with Germany and the opportunity in China, there’s interest from India, Israel, the Netherlands and France. “We can’t handle all of the demands that are coming in,” Amhaus said. “I worry about burnout … As we start to work globally … it just changes the dynamics of things.” Finding the staff to support the next chapter for not only The Water Council, but also the region’s water-related companies, will require continued talent development, which Amhaus said needs to start at an early age. Meeusen said there are already a good number of young professionals coming out of schools like the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater’s Institute for Water Business, the University of WisconsinMilwaukee School of Freshwater Sciences and engineering programs at the region’s universities. “The link between the companies in town and those graduates has been key to our success,” Meeusen said, noting Badger Meter moved about 20 jobs from Tulsa, Oklahoma to Milwaukee because he felt future available talent would meet the company’s needs. Marian Singer, co-founder and chief executive officer of Wellntel, a startup that makes connected groundwater monitors, said the UWM Freshwater school is doing great work. But her company’s needs, which include engineers from a variety of disciplines, industrial designers and marketing and sales staff, go beyond what the school produces. “We’d like to see more emphasis just on the technology aspect and I don’t know that Milwaukee as a whole has really embraced what’s needed in terms of web-based businesses,” she said. Wellntel is a graduate of the BREW,

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

The Water Council’s startup accelerator, and currently has five employees, plus another half dozen people doing work on a contract basis. Its product monitors groundwater in private wells using a radio on the wellhead, and a gateway sends the data to the cloud. Part of the challenge water startups face is their markets often are focused on a specific issue. Many involve producing a physical product, leading to a longer, more complex sales cycle, Singer said. The need for solutions to water-related problems is clear, whether it’s in Flint, Michigan or Milwaukee, California or China. The specific nature of the challenges sometimes means the job growth doesn’t follow the pattern of other industries. “I think that what you see is longterm, very good, steady job growth, but the hockey stick that you think of when you think of tech startups and Silicon Valley is probably not something that’s available to the water market, just because it’s a different animal,” Singer said. Swindall, who is vice president of sector strategy development at the WEDC, noted BREW companies have created jobs from basically nothing and, perhaps more importantly, 14 of them have been granted patents on their technology or have patents pending. Meeusen said at the beginning of The Water Council, the big targets were either the development of groundbreaking technology or attracting a major water technology company to the city, a goal checked off with the new Zurn headquarters. “I think we are near some breakthrough technologies,” he said, predicting a breakthrough would come in the next three years as the region’s large companies continue to invest in those efforts. The Water Council already has helped Badger Meter, providing exposure to two companies Badger Meter eventually acquired, Racine Federated Inc. and Aquacue Inc. “We view this as an opportunity for us to find opportunities,” Meeusen said, noting he could spend months flying around the country to get a look at startups, but the BREW program provides a good look at six new technologies every year. He compared the situation to a beekeeper building an apiary not just to keep bees, but to get honey. “We’re not using our shareholder money out of the generosity of our hearts; We want the honey,” he said. n

water technology

Companies paying closer attention to water usage, handling


usinesses seeking to reduce their environmental impact are looking beyond energy efficiencies and alternative energy sources to water – mainly, how their organizations deal with water usage and the water collecting on their property. Innovative stormwater solutions receive the most attention as rules toughen regarding its collection. Two of the newer ideas being used are pervious parking surfaces and blue roofs. For businesses with surface parking, figuring out what to do with water runoff from their property can be a challenge, with building a retention pond being the most popular choice. The addition of new porous pavement and pervious concrete options on the market may change that.

Spancrete's RePlenish pervious concrete.


Over the past five years, Oconomowoc-based Wolf Paving Co. Inc. has seen more businesses, especially retail centers, move to porous asphalt. This technology allows water to flow through the asphalt into a stone bed collection area under the parking lot, said Sean Wolf, vice president of Wolf Paving Co. “Eventually, the water will move down through the ground and replenish the groundwater,” he said. “Porous asphalt allows businesses to be more creative on how to deal with water, plus it’s good for the environment.” While it initially costs more to install, there are savings overall, Wolf said. For example, some local governments charge developers stormwater impact fees when





More than 8,700+ Wisconsin companies know the benefits of broadening their horizons. These businesses generated more than $22.4 billion in international sales last year alone by taking their products and services abroad. Join them. With an extensive global support network, offering everything from market updates and international trade missions to an expert-led acceleration program, you’re ready to go In Wisconsin. Get there. Call 855-INWIBIZ (toll free) or visit In Wisconsin® is a registered trademark of Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 7:00 AM - 11:30 AM Potawatomi Hotel & Casino

Transitioning Your Wisdom and Your Wealth Join BizTimes and a distinguished group of family business owners and leaders for a morning of inspiration and hands-on learning to help you embrace the next generation of change in your business. Our speakers and roundtable sessions will spur new thinking and expand on existing ideas around culture, growth, transition, sustainability and legacy.


Author and family business expert Tom Deans will again kick-off the program with a keynote address. He will share insights from his best-selling book, “Willing Wisdom: 7 Questions Successful Families Ask.”

Additional speakers, plus information-packed roundtable sessions round out the event. Roundtable sessions include these topics and more: • Transitioning to the Next Generation

• Exit strategy - ESOPs, Private Equity, Strategic Buyers

• Labor and Employment Issues

• Compensation & Incentive plan best

• Funding and Financing Growth • How to Organize Your Family Meetings

practices • Incorporating Non-Family member

• Leadership Development • Wealth Preservation & Leaving a Legacy • Establishing the Family Business Culture • Crucial Conversations and Accountability

leadership • Innovation and Growth Strategies for long-term success

Register Today!



Presented by:

A stack of RePlenish pervious concrete.

water runoff from paved areas overwhelms the storm sewer system. With porous asphalt, the demand on storm sewers is reduced so the impact fee can be eliminated. Developers also save money by not needing to install a retention pond or other stormwater management solution on-site. That land can instead be used for development. Another benefit: No standing water – which is especially helpful in Wisconsin, where standing water can turn into ice. For businesses that prefer concrete, Waukesha-based Spancrete Inc. developed RePlenish, a pervious precast concrete. “The name says it all – it helps replenish the aquifer by allowing rainwater to flow through it to the groundwater below,” said Kimberly Wacker, vice president of marketing and communications for Spancrete. Some businesses use a cistern-like system under RePlenish to use the collected liquid to water on-site landscaping or vegetation, Wacker said. “The pervious precast concrete allows some businesses to increase their parking space or concrete area,” said Wacker, adding Milwaukee World Festival Inc. installed some of the material at Henry Maier Festival Park, allowing it to expand the area covered by concrete, since the water was easily collected and placed back in the groundwater, versus treated as wastewater as it entered the city sewer system. Both pervious concrete and porous asphalt require one bit of extra maintenance – they need to be swept or vacuumed off a couple times a year or else the small holes can become clogged, Wolf said. For dealing with the rain and snow that hit a building’s roof, adding a blue roof is another option for businesses to handle water. A blue roof – not a green roof featuring plants, which is another option for handling water – has a structure that collects rain and rather than release it immediately into the municipal stormwater system, waits an allotted amount of time – about 12 hours – before slowly letting it

flow down the drain spouts. Blue roofs are relatively new, with few in the area. Mortara Instrument Inc. included one when it built its 64,000-squarefoot facility in Milwaukee last year, as did Dominion Properties in its Sage on Prospect apartment building at 1825 N. Prospect Ave., Milwaukee.

Internal water usage For businesses using a lot of water, improved resource management can lower costs and help the company be a better corporate citizen. MillerCoors LLC knows the importance of managing water usage and is pursuing certification for the Alliance for Water Stewardship, an international standard, said Audrey Templeton, senior environmental safety and health manager for MillerCoors. “Water is an extremely important ingredient for making great beer and we want to be good stewards of it,” Templeton explained. “We want to be transparent in our use of water.” MillerCoors is the first brewery to work toward AWS, in which companies aim to align their internal production processes with an understanding of external watershed risks. Companies must demonstrate an understanding of their own water use, its context in the local watershed, and the shared concerns of water governance, water quality and other water-related areas, Templeton said. After piloting efforts to better conserve water in Milwaukee, MillerCoors plans to extend the effort to other locations. “We are continually trying to improve how we use water and the goal is to eventually reduce the amount of water used in each barrel of beer,” Templeton said. Outside of beer production, MillerCoors is taking different steps to conserve water, such as changing the plant’s cleaning process so less water is used overall, Templeton said. “We want to be good stewards of our resources and making these changes is one way to do that,” she said. n


Consider getting an executive coach You might appreciate the support


hen I answered the phone, Mary Ellen said, “I had you in my ear.” She and I had worked together in an executive coaching relationship for six months, and I was curious about her statement. Here is the story: Mary Ellen is a senior executive at a Fortune 500 company. She and her team are responsible for auditing the finances of the company in order to present accurate numbers to the executive team and their board of directors. The meeting to present the data was Monday morning. Late Thursday afternoon, one of her team members called Mary Ellen to report that the numbers were off – significantly – and nobody on the team knew why. Mary Ellen took a few deep breaths and said, “Give me a few minutes and I will be over to discuss a plan.” She realized she needed to get her own emotions in check before addressing the problem with her team. She has come to appreciate that when leaders “explode,” employees often shut down. They react to the emotional hijack the leader is experiencing, and they become hijacked themselves. The stakes were high. This was a situation that required full brain power by all of the team members. When Mary Ellen met with her team,

she communicated clear expectations. “We’ve got to find the mistake, correct it and create a process so that this issue will not happen again.” Mary Ellen assured her team she would work side-by-side with them to resolve the issue. She assured them she would “have their backs.” She expressed confidence that together, they would unearth the mistake. And she let them know that if they were not able to discover the cause of the mistake within the timeframe, they would develop a Plan B for the scheduled meeting with the executive team and board members. Everyone on the team was able to breathe. Everyone was able to think. This level of interaction was new leadership behavior for Mary Ellen. Her pattern in the past was to blow up; assign blame; and protect her own image and ego. As a result of the work she did in her coaching process, Mary Ellen not only recognizes when she is emotionally hijacked, but also now has strategies to cope. The team and Mary Ellen put in long hours, working through the weekend. Together, they discovered the mistakes. They quickly resolved the issue and designed a plan to prevent it from happening again. On Monday morning, they were able to confidently present the financials to the w w


KAREN VERNAL LEADERSHIP executive team and their board. As leaders, we need the opportunity to accelerate our skills. We need to appreciate that we have blind spots; that we rarely know what impact our behavior is having on others. Few people are willing to tell us the truth. An effective executive leadership coach “tells truth to power.” An executive coach supports the leader in developing new skills to lead and guide his or her team;

influence peers; and provide needed direction for boards. An effective executive coach challenges a leader’s beliefs. Like so many leaders, Mary Ellen advanced to a senior level within her organization because she demonstrated excellent functional skills. Others listened to her because of her functional competency. Now, her primary responsibility is leadership. In order to be successful, she must create a new toolbox. And while she grew up with authoritarian leaders who used intimidation to garner compliance, that style of leadership no longer works. It does not call out the strengths in others. It does not inspire them to be the best they can be. CEOs often find that engaging with an executive or leadership coach offers them a level of safety. They welcome the honesty. They welcome the space for reflection and consideration of options critical to the success of the organization. They welcome a relationship in which they have the freedom to be vulnerable. Seasoned coaches learn to ask questions that invite leaders to recognize what they already know from the inside out. Mary Ellen is learning these three responsibilities of leadership. She is learning to: define reality (articulate a vision and expectations); say thank you; and that becoming a servant leader means doing all she can to support the best in her team. Perhaps this is the time for you to consider engaging a leadership coach. You deserve the support! n Karen Vernal is the president of Vernal Management Consultants LLC, a Milwaukee-based leadership and organizational firm dedicated to “igniting the spirits and skills of leaders.” The company is one of two firms in the nation to be certified in emotional intelligence through the Institute for Health and Human Potential. For more information, visit

MACC Fund, Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer, Inc. (414) 955-5830


The MACC Fund raises funds for research in Wisconsin for childhood cancer and related blood disorders like sickle cell disease and aplastic anemia providing a Gift of Hope Through Research. The MACC Fund believes that every child deserves a fighting chance.



M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e

To learn more, visit PRODUCED BY


strategies can be perceived as acquiescence or weakness. Not so. Keep your wits about you and your eyes and ears open. What you learn will be invaluable. Another aspect of engagement involves placing information within an appropriate context. This requires an understanding of the situation itself, the larger environment within which it exists, the individuals and groups that have influence, and a historical perspective. Naturally, this takes time to develop. When you are new to a group, you may feel compelled to offer your brilliance in order to establish your presence. To stand apart, reserve your growing wisdom until it can truly shed new light or offer new insight.


Stand out

How to become an unforgettable professional


out from your peers and would-be competitors as an unforgettable professional, do three things: listen, engage and communicate effectively. That’s it. If you can do these consistently and well, you will be unicorn-like in your uniqueness!

any moons ago, when I was a young professional, I heard this career advice: “You don’t have to do a lot different to be a lot different.” At the time, this meant that you didn’t have to be on the cover of Fortune or Forbes magazines or own a mega-yacht in order to distinguish yourself. In today’s social media world, where you can daily see shiny, happy faces in active lifestyles and sometimes exotic travel, distinguishing yourself seems more difficult and pressure to succeed is off the charts. Please allow me to repeat the advice: “You don’t have to do a lot different to be a lot different.” In fact, to truly stand

Listen Most people today simply do not listen. Experienced professionals may have a story they stick to no matter the evidence that things have changed, making their information or perspective if not irrelevant, at least less than optimal. Emerging leaders and young professionals tend to rely on technology to garner facts or a preponder-

Make-A-Wish® Wisconsin (262) 781-4445


Make-A-Wish® Wisconsin grants the wishes of children who are living with a life-threatening medical condition to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.




To learn more, visit PRODUCED BY

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


SUSAN MARSHALL COACHING ance of social media activity to support their point of view. Continual change and changing fortunes create pressure to be visible and relevant. This creates a lot of noise. Add to this a poisoned political and social environment in which lines are drawn based on differences and epithets are hurled to silence those who have divergent ideas or values. When you listen without feeling a need to correct, defend, or fix, you keep your mind open to understanding what someone is trying to accomplish and the ways in which his or her efforts are being thwarted.

Engage With this insight, you can work to develop new and responsive solutions. Here is where engagement sets you apart. Staying mentally present, even when you hear disappointing or upsetting information, requires discipline. This is also true – perhaps more so – when a discussion becomes trite or boring. In heated exchanges, people are conditioned to defend or protect themselves and their allies. Withholding comment

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

Communicating effectively is the visible payoff of listening and engaging. Here you decide what you will do with the information you receive. Of what value is it and to whom? How will you share it? What is your motivation? Let’s say you hear from an important client about a flaw in your ordering process which involves your online systems, customer service and external fulfillment partners. The client was shuffled from one toll-free number to another and one agent to the next only to be told that until your website is updated, his order cannot be processed. Naturally, he is upset. In fact, he told you he is seeking an alternative provider. Sadly, most of us have experienced this particular frustration so often that we chalk it up to the “new norm” of business. You may be tempted to offer an explanation for why your system is currently unavailable or caution your client about working with an inexperienced provider. Resist this. Resist, too, the urge to shine your own star internally by offering a brilliant solution to this complex problem. Focus instead on championing your clients and your organization. Report facts as you learn them, reserving judgment or commentary. Help where you can and stand down when it is time. This combination of confidence and humility is counter-culture. It is smart business. Practiced consistently, it can make you truly unforgettable. n Susan A. Marshall is an author, speaker and the founder of Backbone Institute. ( She can be reached at (262) 567-5983 or


As the weather warms, keep them engaged Summer benefit ideas for your employees


ummer is just around the corner. Summers in Wisconsin are short…and everyone here is eager to spend as much time as possible enjoying the warm weather. We thought it would be interesting to learn what our customers and business partners are doing to help their employees enjoy the season! Following are examples from two local companies. Tim Jarecki, director of human resources at HellermannTyton, shared the following: »» “Our facilities, all of which are airconditioned, each have an outside patio area with a grill, picnic tables, umbrellas, etc.” »» “We promote volunteer activities like local community clean-up days and walk/run/bike events.” »» “We hold an annual summer picnic.” »» “The Granville BID sponsors food trucks each Monday. We promote that to our employees and are looking at sponsoring a food truck on-site at our largest manufacturing facility.” »» “Fitness classes that are normally held indoors are moved outdoors, weather permitting.” »» “Each lunch room has a ‘toy box’ supplied with summer activity equipment that anyone can use during their break time.” »» “Our Engineering department does a summer Olympics knock-off event at Dretzka Park.” »» “We have a summer golf league at Dretzka Park.” Tim Stewart, an attorney at DeWitt Ross & Stevens, shared: “There are a few things that we do to keep employees motivated and help them to enjoy themselves at work and away from work during the summer.” »» “First of all, we offer all employees a lot of paid time off from the very start of their employment. Being able to take some time off to re-charge your batteries is an important part of employee engagement and productivity.” »» “Of course, we see a higher percent-

age of PTO use during the summer months and we plan for that accordingly. In fact, we have even utilized temporary employees during periods when necessary.” »» “We also try to keep a positive, fun atmosphere. For example, we have quarterly ice cream socials to celebrate birthdays or just to catch up with each other.” »» “Probably the coolest thing we will do this spring/summer is during our UPAF Workplace Giving Campaign at our Brookfield office, which is always our most fun week of the year. We are having a talent show. Right now, we have attorneys set to play the guitar, sing and even do stand-up comedy! It will bring everyone together and raise money for UPAF.” Additional ideas we discovered while researching this topic: »» Research suggests summer hours can prevent employee burnout and increase productivity in the workplace. »» To be successful for the company, a summer benefits program should complement the needs of the company. »» Many companies have implemented the four-day work week (other companies have this benefit not only for summertime, but year-round). For those companies with a four-day work week, employees work 10-hour days for four days, then are off for three full days in the summer months. »» In some circumstances, companies of varying sizes close for an entire week in summertime. Many include a stipend for this, too. »» Some companies allow employees to work in an employee garden on-site or in an outdoor seating area during summer months. »» Company-sponsored volunteer opportunities in the summer help to cultivate relationship-building for employees.

grams within a company can be great for employees, but should align with the business needs (as those needs don’t disappear in summer). Some companies utilize temp employees to fill the gap of additional people using PTO (paid time off) in the summertime. One of the most common summer benefits, regardless of industry, is offering summer Fridays with varying implementation options. A standard summer Friday is typically offered Memorial Day to Labor Day; employees leave the office mid-afternoon after putting in extra time throughout the week to make up the hours. Overall, our research supports that an increasing number of companies are

A LETA N O R R IS GENERATION Y forming summer benefits for employees. These benefits can enhance work-life balance, as well as help increase employee retention. What benefits do you offer employees in the summertime? n Aleta Norris is a co-founding partner of Brookfield-based Living As A Leader, a leadership training, coaching and consulting firm. You may send questions to her at To read all of her columns, visit the knowledge portal at

The Performing Arts Matter. Join us on Sunday, June 4, for UPAF’s largest annual fundraising event. Ride and raise pledges to benefit 15 outstanding performing arts groups in Southeastern Wisconsin. With five routes for all types of riders, it’s fun for everyone. For more information or to register visit or call (414) 276-RIDE. Advertising Sponsored by Milwaukee Business Journal

The many benefits to summer prow w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


biz connections CA L E NDAR


The Waukesha County Business Alliance will host Emerging Leaders of Waukesha County Awards Program on Tuesday, May 16, from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at Davians, N56 W16300 Silver Spring Drive in Menomonee Falls. Waukesha County will be honoring young professionals who are creating and inspiring a better vision of the future. Keynote address by Dirk Debbink, MSI General Corp. Cost is $60 for chamber members and includes breakfast. For more information or to register, visit


The Wisconsin Veterans Chamber of Commerce will host a Chamber Muster on Thursday, May 18 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Supper restaurant, 1962 N. Prospect Ave. in Milwaukee. Meet veterans, professionals, business owners and community leaders for networking. The event is free to chamber members, or $10 for the general public. The chamber also will be collecting donations to benefit USO Wisconsin. For more information or to register, visit The Independent Business Association of Wisconsin will host Future Technology in the Workplace and Beyond on Friday, May 19 from 7 to 9 a.m. at the Wisconsin Club, 900 W. Wisconsin Ave. in Milwaukee. The presentation will be given by Scott VanderSanden, president of AT&T Wisconsin. Cost is $32 for IBAW members or $50 for non-members, and includes a plated breakfast. For more information or to register, visit The Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce’s Council of Small Business Executives will host its 8th Annual Brewers Outing on Thursday, June 8, from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Miller Park-Northwestern Mutual Legends Club, 1 Brewers Way in Milwaukee. Enjoy food, drinks, prize drawings and fun in the exclusive Northwestern Mutual Legends Club while networking with other executives before and during the game. Pre-game networking begins at 11:30 See the complete calendar of and the game begins at 1:10. Cost is $119. For more inforupcoming events & meetings. mation or to register, visit

BIZ NO T ES MSI General Corp. Oconomowoc-based MSI General Corp. has been honored with the Silver Award for Interior Design by the American Society of Interior Designers. In the category of Retail/Showroom, Jim Olson, AIA, NCARB was awarded silver for Gerhard’s Kitchen and Bath Showroom in Whitefish Bay.

Swimming Pool Services Waukesha-based Swimming Pool Services Inc. has won two Gold awards from the Midwest chapter of the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals. SPS has won Gold awards for more than 10 consecutive years in the APSP Midwest chapter, which includes more than 100 companies in Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa. Both projects deemed Gold by the APSP posed challenges to meet the customers’ visions of their ideal living and relaxation spaces. In a project in Mequon, the homeowners sought a new pool to complement their busy lifestyle and fit in with their existing space, all with a “Hampton” feel to the new backyard addition. In a project in Eagle, the homeowners wanted a new pool oriented around an existing deck and patio. SPS also recently won a Gold Wisconsin Remodeler Award from the Milwaukee/NARI Home Improvement Council. The Gold Wisconsin Remodeler Award recognized a Delafield project that transformed a backyard into a fresh, welcoming space.

Vrakas/Blum Computer Consulting Inc. Vrakas/Blum Computer Consulting Inc., an affiliate of public accounting and business advisory firm Vrakas CPAs + Advisors, has been named

the No. 1 reseller of JobOps for 2016, making it the top reseller for the past 11 years. JobOps is a job management software solution that is developed by Synergistic Software Solutions LLC and sold through a distribution channel of certified independent JobOps resellers with locations throughout the U.S. Synergistic Software Solutions was founded in 1983 to provide tailored software solutions for the small to mid-sized enterprise. Synergistic is among a select group of master developers for Sage Software Inc. JobOps was specifically developed for Sage’s award-winning Sage 100 Accounting Software.

Waukesha County Business Alliance The Waukesha County Business Alliance has announced the eight winners of its Emerging Leaders of Waukesha County awards program. These awards celebrate young professionals who have shown personal initiative, determination and commitment to their careers and their community. The Alliance received many nominations for the awards, and an independent judging panel reviewed nominees based on six criteria: community service involvement, achievement of professional goals, having a team mindset, continual self-improvement, possessing leadership traits and seeking ways to advance. The winners are: Taylor Jannsen, owner of PerformanceMax Basketball Training LLC; Patrick McNally, director of critical care and emergency services at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Community Memorial Hospital; Ann Marie Moss, director of development and communications at The Women’s Center; Sarah Prince, market

To have your business briefs published in a future issue of BizTimes Milwaukee send announcements to


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


Neighborhood House O F M I L W A U K E E Neighborhood House of Milwaukee 2819 W. Richardson Place, Milwaukee (414) 933-6161 |

Year founded: 1945 Mission statement: To inspire and connect by strengthening families and our community Primary focus: Providing education for youth (ages 6 weeks to 18 years) and adult learners Other focuses: »» Outdoor education »» Early childhood education »» Refugee education focusing on jobs training, English language lessons and computer skills »» Youth education »» Teen development focusing on leadership skill-building, college and career preparation, and community service Number of employees at this location: 56 Key donors: »» Mihi Cura Futuri Fund »» Bader Philanthropies »» Forest County Potawatomi Community Foundation »» United Way »» Dr. Arvind and Dr. Namrata Ahuja Executive leadership: »» Jeff Martinka, executive director »» Terry R. Young, board president Board of directors: »» Terry R. Young, president

research analyst at Hydro-Thermal Corp.; Sarah Resch, executive director of Camp Whitcomb/Mason - Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee; Jason Schneider, partner and director of project management at VJS Construction Services; Jeremy Wedell,

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

»» »» »» »» »» »» »» »» »» »» »» »» »» »» »»

Kathryn A. Kuhn, vice president Susan M. Hickey, secretary Kevin Rich, treasurer Joel Brennan David Jorgensen Mark A. Katz Stephanie Radtke Michael Ramstack Brendan Raught Will Ruch Judith Davidson Shane Brian Spaid Bryan Terry Katie D. Triska C.J. Wauters

Is your organization seeking board members for the upcoming term? Yes. What roles are you looking to fill? Corporate employees. Ways the business community can help your nonprofit: Event sponsorships, volunteering at Neighborhood House, service on the board of directors, employee giving. Key fundraising events: Neighborhood House Open: Neighborhood House’s annual charity golf outing will take place Monday, June 5 at the Legend at Bristlecone golf course in Hartland. Annual Gala: Held in November, the Neighborhood House Annual Gala brings together more than 300 guests for dinner, auctions and inspiring speeches by program participants.

director of finance at WorkWise Software LLC; and Jessica Zeratsky, attorney at von Briesen & Roper s.c. They will receive their awards at the Emerging Leaders of Waukesha County Awards Breakfast on Tuesday, May 16 at Davians in Menomonee Falls.

biz connections PER SO NNE L F I L E

Submit new hire and promotion announcements to

Vanessa Kiger joined

■ Banking & Finance Citizens Bank has hired Patrick Martin as vice president-business banker. Martin, who will join the company’s Waukesha office, has 15 years of banking and lending experience.

■ Building & Construction VJS Construction Services, Pewaukee, hired Liza Jablonski as director of business development. Prior to joining VJS, Jablonski was a commercial real estate portfolio manager at a financial institution.

FCJK, an affiliate of Robertson Ryan & Associates, Mequon, as a high net worth personal lines associate with more than 20 years of experience.

■ Legal Foley & Lardner LLP, Milwaukee, named Kevin Schulz and Jon Israel as co-chair and vice chair, respectively, of the firm’s sports industry team. Transitioning from his Schulz prior role as vice chair, Schulz now will work alongside co-chair Mary K. Braza to guide the strategic direction of the industry team. Israel succeeds Schulz in the vice chair position.

Wisconsin announced the appointment of Preston Giles as production sales manager. He joins the CMT team with nearly 40 years of experience in the manufacturing industry, with an extensive background in production machining.

■ Marketing Exhibit Systems, Brookfield, hired Kevin Ruiz as an account executive. He has a background in marketing, data analysis and customer service. EPIC Creative, West Bend, recently promoted Jon Vogelman from senior web developer to lead web developer. Vogelman has been

■ Manufacturing Delafield-based Concept Machine Tool


with EPIC since 2015. In this new position, he will be responsible for leading a productive working environment for the development team.

■ Professional Services Scott Smith has been hired as director of sales for Marcus Hotels & Resorts’ Wisconsin Hospitality Linen Services, Milwaukee. Smith will be responsible for new business development and sales and marketing initiatives. In addition, David Sobcinski was hired as general manager of the company. He has more than 30 years of management experience in the laundry service industry.

■ Senior Living Suzanne Whitty has been hired as administrator of the LindenGrove Communities Waukesha Campus.


MSI General Corp., Oconomowoc, hired Zach Lee and Richard Degrace as project superintendents in the operations department.

■ Hospitality & Entertainment Samuel England has been named director of human resources at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, Milwaukee. In his new role, he will drive the direction of the department, leading recruitment, advancing employee performance and formulating departmental strategies.

Subscribe to BizTimes’ Daily enewsletter to receive exclusive regional news every day.

Subscribe Today!

Let’s look at the math. Like $100 million for our local economy. Or the thousands and thousands of jobs they create. Or the hundreds of thousands of kids who do better in English and science and, you guessed it,

■ Insurance

math. But there’s also 50–as in the 50 years UPAF has supported the arts in Greater Milwaukee, and the over $300 million we’ve raised to set the stage since 1967. Let’s keep it going. Donate today at



Robert Rice and Debbie Lange have joined G2 Insurance Services, Brookfield, as account executives. The two specialize in personal lines insurance and working with small- to mid-size commercial accounts.

Media support provided by Milwaukee Business Journal

w w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e



Leaders in Environmental, Safety and Resource Recovery Services. • Full Service Provider • Sustainability Programs • Recycling Alternatives


• Compliance Services • Annual Regulatory Reporting • Industrial Cleaning

HERE’S MY CARD GALLERY As of June 1st 2015, IBM has deployed As of 90,000 June 1st 2015,48,000 IBM has deployed over Macs, iPads, and over 90,000 Macs, 48,000 iPads, and 81,000 iPhones to employees. 81,000 iPhones employees. IBM is going to Mac, maybe your IBM is going Mac, maybe business should too.your business should MC Services can too. help. MC Services can help.

Training Training

24 Hour Emergency Service (262) 650-0770

Design - Site Surveys - Permitting - Production - Installation

262.432.1330 -

Lobby furniture | Cubicle panels | Office chairs | Carpeting

services services

Development + Apps Development + Apps 262-522-6950 -262-522-6950 since 1995 - since 1995 -

Signature Landscaping Residential and Commercial for Waukesha County

4 Seasons Color is Our Specialty Design, Installation and Maintenance!

Fresh Start for Spring!

For an Expert Quote Call


Call Mark today: 414.610.9507 |


ADVERTISE IN THE LUXURY HOMES AND PROPERTIES SECTION TODAY! Contact Advertising Sales for rates and specs. or 414-336-7112 36

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

IT Support IT Support








biz connections

Network After Work Network After Work hosted an event at Evolution Gastro Pong in Milwaukee on April 25. 1 Dennis Hill of Exacta Corp. and George James of InfoCor. 2 Ryan Hall of Enerpac and Humberto Salvo of River Run Computers. 3 Cary Bell of Spectrum Business and Jayson Kurfis of Advanced Scientific Writing.


4 Tim Moody of Storage Systems Midwest, Joe Lofy of JKL Images, Randy Geszvain of Corey Oil and Jennifer Zhang of Quad Tech Inc.


5 Leighann Lovely of InStaff and Shaun Kamps of River Run Computers. 6 Deandre Pipkin of Global View Capital Advisors and Joel Hoerchner of University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. 7 Ellie Thomas and Katharine Braunschweiger, both of Bader-Rutter, and Dan Berlinski of Spectrum Business. 8 Jay Huenink of Kohl’s Department Stores and Mary Jo Travis of Milwaukee Area Technical College. 9 The networking event was held at The View at Evolution, the bar’s rooftop space. Photos by Maredithe Meyer

You can see these photos and other business people in the news by clicking Multimedia on the navigation bar at …

9 w w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


biz connections


126 N. Jefferson St., Suite 403, Milwaukee, WI 53202-6120 PHONE: 414-277-8181 FAX: 414-277-8191 WEBSITE: CIRCULATION E-MAIL: ADVERTISING E-MAIL: EDITORIAL E-MAIL: REPRINTS:

Caps and gowns


This photo shows the 1940 graduating class of MilwaukeeDowner College. Milwaukee-Downer was a women’s college that operated until 1964 in Milwaukee. It was established with the 1895 merger of Milwaukee College, the first female college in Wisconsin, and Downer College of Fox Lake. In 1964, Milwaukee-Downer was consolidated with Lawrence College in Appleton, and its 43-acre campus was sold to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.


— This photo is from the Milwaukee Public Museum’s Photo Archives collection. Additional images can be viewed online at

Dan Meyer Mary Ernst




Lauren Anderson REPORTER

Corrinne Hess REPORTER


Maredithe Meyer







Lena Tomaszek SALES INTERN

Salimah Muhammad


Sue Herzog


Eileen Demet


Alex Schneider ART DIRECTOR

Shelly Tabor

Independent & Locally Owned —  Founded 1995 —


Competition could be intense for Fiserv HQ


inancial services software firm Fiserv Inc. recently acknowledged it is evaluating the future of its corporate headquarters in Brookfield. “During the next few months, we’ll be looking at how we might evolve our headquarters environment in alignment with our broader workplace strategy, brand and associate experience,” said Fiserv spokeswoman Britt Zarling. “We are in the very early stages of our exploration.” This is a big deal. Fiserv is a Fortune 500 company that has about 850 employees at its headquarters. Any community would be thrilled to have the company based there. The situation raises a number of questions. The first, what are the chances that Fiserv will move its headquarters out of state? This is a global company with more than 120 locations around the world. Fiserv is here because it was started here. Co-founder George Dalton ran Midland Bank’s First Data Processing 38

subsidiary, and eventually he and other investors bought out the subsidiary, which then was merged with Sunshine State Systems, owned by Leslie Muma, forming Fiserv in 1984. But today, Fiserv actually has a larger presence in Alpharetta, Georgia (near Atlanta), with about 1,600 employees as of 2016. State and local officials, including the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. and the Milwaukee 7, need to do what they can, within reason, to keep Fiserv in Wisconsin. A move to another state would be extremely disruptive to the lives of the Brookfield employees. That could help keep Fiserv here. So the next question is, will Fiserv consider moving its headquarters to downtown Milwaukee? Downtown has been hot in recent years, with numerous apartment and hoB i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


tel developments, new restaurants, the new 32-story office tower at the Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. headquarters campus and the new arena under construction for the Milwaukee Bucks. Several companies have moved downtown recently, including marketing firm Bader Rutter, which just relocated from Brookfield. Downtown offers an exciting urban setting with numerous restaurants, bars, sports and cultural amenities. It is an atmosphere that appeals to many young professionals. A common issue with moving downtown is it is less convenient for employees who have built their lives around the suburban workplace location. These will be key considerations for Fiserv. The company needs to figure out its best option to attract and retain top talent. Move downtown to attract the younger future workforce, or stay in the suburbs to better satisfy existing employees and those who prefer the suburban lifestyle?

M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


w w

ANDREW WEILAND Editor BizTimes Milwaukee

If Fiserv stays in the suburbs, will it stay in its current Brookfield location, move to a new building in Brookfield or move to another suburban community? The company owns its building at 255 Fiserv Drive, which is assessed at $21.2 million, according to county records. If the company relocates, what does it do with the building? Brookfield provided $6 million in tax increment financing to help convince Milwaukee Tool to stay and expand its headquarters there. The state agreed to provide up to $18 million in income tax credits tied to job creation and capital investment. Expect state and local officials, and real estate developers, to be similarly aggressive with the Fiserv deal. n


the last word

Welcome diversity According to Erickajoy Daniels, senior vice president of diversity and inclusion for Aurora Health Care, diversity is not just about getting the right people in the door, but about creating a welcoming environment for them when they arrive. “When people hear the words ‘diversity and inclu“People can be uncomfortable with discussions about sion,’ far too often they assume that we are solely refer- race, gender, sexual orientation and all other forms of ring to recruiting diverse talent. While I am the first to difference. To address this, we have provided leaders with recognize the value in recruiting diverse individuals, I resources and training that explore self-awareness, unam proud to say that we have a more comprehensive ap- conscious bias and emotional intelligence. This approach proach to D&I at Aurora. diminishes the notion that talking about diversity is ta“As part of our multifaceted strategy to create a wel- boo which, in turn, reshapes the conversation among our coming environment for our caregivers, we’ve found that caregivers as a celebration of our differences. to establish a truly inclusive workplace, organizations “Although this dialogue is just the beginning, it delivmust engage their leadership teams to actively normalize ers a huge impact. At Aurora, we believe that our purpose conversations about diversity. to ‘help people live well’ is only as strong as our commitw w


M ay 15 - 2 8 , 2 017


Erickajoy Daniels Senior vice president of diversity and inclusion Aurora Health Care 750 W. Virginia St., Milwaukee Industry: Health care Employees: 32,000

ment to the people who carry out this task. By accomplishing our mission from the inside out, we are improving our workplace for our caregivers while enhancing the healing environment for the patients we serve.” n

B i zT i m e s M i l w a u k e e


Without a strong network, your business solutions can’t do much.

Vehicle Tracking


Remote Monitoring

Business Continuity

Our network-powered IoT Business Solutions give you better visibility and control over operations because we put towers where most others don’t, giving you a stronger signal in the Middle of Anywhere.

Learn more about our full suite of solutions