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MILWAUKEE COMMERCE Winter 2018 - Volume 97, No. 4

From the President

Living with change: The only place to live Perspectives from:

Todd McLees - Pendio Group Meghan Jensen - The Water Council James Hischke - Northwestern Mutual



08 PA G E

14 PA G E


Becoming a 'brain belt' starts with smart collaboration Manufacturing remains vital to MKE's future, but will population trends rise to meet new opportunities? Q&A with Kelly O'Brien of the Alliance for Regional Development

We’ve been putting Clients First for nearly 125 years From tanneries in the 1890s to heavy manufacturing in the 1950s to the cutting-edge tech companies of today, Reinhart has never wavered in its commitment to each client’s success.  ⋅  414.298.1000 MILWAUKEE  ⋅  MADISON  ⋅  WAUKESHA  ⋅  CHICAGO  ⋅  ROCKFORD  ⋅  DENVER  ⋅  PHOENIX

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Milwaukee Commerce, WINTER 2018

How collaboration today can prepare Milwaukee for whatever comes next After looking at how far Milwaukee – and MMAC member companies – have come in the past 50 years this fall, this edition will consider the trends, technologies and innovations that point us in the direction of our region’s future. Disruptive change will affect everything from demographics to occupations we can only imagine today. Hear from thought leaders in various industries for a glimpse at what’s to come for the metro Milwaukee business community.

07 | Living with change: The only place to live Tim Sheehy - MMAC

08 | Becoming a 'brain belt' starts with smart collaboration Chris Jenkins - MMAC

12 | The rise of Milwaukee's digital ecosystem Todd McLees - Pendio Group

14 | Manufacturing remains vital to Milwaukee’s future, but will population trends rise to meet new opportunities? Bret Mayborne - MMAC

15 | Water technology, stewardship critical to Milwaukee’s future Meghan Jensen - The Water Council

16 | Q&A with Kelly O'Brien of the Alliance for Regional Development 18 | Milwaukee tech hub: Harnessing the power of disruption

Our region’s dynamic business economy offers both unprecedented opportunities and ever-present challenges for today’s companies. Globalization, a next-generation workforce and advanced technology have made conducting business more competitive and fast-paced than ever before. One thing, however, has remained constant: the need for companies to have a legal partner that understands the wide range of complex issues they face. That is why our experienced attorneys have served as strategic advisers to clients across southeastern Wisconsin since 1894, working with them to navigate regulation, protect assets, expand capabilities and accelerate growth. With a proven record of helping companies succeed in evolving business environments, we deliver a combination of legal advice, business acumen and superior service perfectly matched to each client’s unique situation. It is an approach we call Clients First.

James Hischke - Northwestern Mutual

20 | "Smart" floors from MKE startup help companies track customer traffic 22 | Innovative approaches preparing students for the future

In Every Issue 05 | Member milestones 25 | Milwaukee 7: New Amazon Oak Creek fulfillment center to employ 1,500 27 | MMAC program & event photos 40 | New MMAC members 43 | Staff directory Volume 97, No. 4 - Milwaukee Commerce (USPS 546-370, ISN 0746-6706) is published four times a year by the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC), 756 N. Milwaukee St., Suite 400, Milwaukee, WI 53202-3767 Periodicals postage paid at Milwaukee, WI. Subscriptions $5 per year for members, included in dues. POSTMASTER send address changes to: Milwaukee Commerce - MMAC/Andrea Medved - 756 N. Milwaukee St., Ste. 400, Milwaukee, WI 53202-3767

Jerry Janzer CEO 414.298.1000

Todd Teske, MMAC Chairman • Tim Sheehy, MMAC President Chris Jenkins, Editor ( Carrie Gossett, Creative Director ( Anna Reaves, Communications Design Specialist ( Jim Wall, Advertising ( |


THE LARGEST BANK IN WISCONSIN MAKES ITS DECISIONS IN WISCONSIN. As the largest Wisconsin-based bank, we fuel the growth of the local economy and help build strong communities. In fact, we’ve provided $12 billion in commercial loans — lending decisions we made right here in this state. So when you’re ready to grow, we’re here to help you realize your ambitions with a solution customized to your business. Experience the better side of banking™ Marc Pressler • Commercial Banking Segment Leader Milwaukee • 330 East Kilbourn Ave. 414-283-2277

Loan products are offered by Associated Bank, N.A., and are subject to credit approval and involve interest and other costs. Please ask about details on fees and terms and conditions of these products. Property insurance and flood insurance, if applicable, will be required on collateral. All trademarks, service marks and trade names referenced in this material are official trademarks and the property of their respective owners. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender. (10/18) 13102

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Milwaukee Commerce, WINTER 2018

Member Milestones

Congratulations to companies celebrating MMAC membership anniversaries September & October 2018

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare - St. Joseph, part of Ascension

Spring Bank The Panaro Group Trans International University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee Lubar School of Business Xymox Technologies



110 YEARS Meissner Tierney Fisher & Nichols


Metropolitan Builders Association of Greater MKE

35 YEARS Milwaukee Business Journal

30 YEARS Cogmatic Machines InterContinental Milwaukee Hotel

25 YEARS Community Care Forest County Potawatomi Foundation Mount Mary University Paragon Printing & Graphics Pettit National Ice Center Potawatomi Hotel & Casino

20 YEARS Bottom Line Marketing - Public Relations Cleary Gull Advisors - a Johnson Financial Group Co. Lafarge North America Milwaukee Neurological Institute Props Unlimited Events Superior Support Resources

15 YEARS Altria Client Services CS Logistics Desert Aire Jimmy John’s Milwaukee - Water St. Paul Davis Restoration & Remodeling

10 YEARS Badger Boiled Ham Co. Century Springs Water Commerce State Bank FirstPathway Partners Great Lakes Distillery Moore Construction Services PNC Bank R.A. Smith River West Shopping Ctr/Tri-Land Properties The Gateway To Milwaukee The Iron Horse Hotel

5 YEARS American Signal Corp. Brand Xlerator Center for Management Terms & Practices Fi-Med Management Gehl Foods Global Capital Group Hypneumat Jimmy John’s Milwaukee - Ernest Group Johnson & Johnson Creative Content Label Traxx Lakefront Brewery Microsoft Corp. Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity Restore Roman Electric Co. SEEK Professionals

AM Accounting and Tax Services Bader Rutter Banner Welder Barrientos Design & Consulting Capital Heating & Cooling Carma Laboratories Chemistry In Place Clarity Management Crueger Dickinson Deans and Homer Engineered Security Solutions Excel and Flourish Fare Temps Fresh Fast & Delicious Gardner Denver HOPE Christian Schools HPR Treatment Centers Hunzinger Construction Company IAS Innovative Dynamic Networks Kiwanis Club of Milwaukee Foundation Lerdahl Business Interiors LifeMoves Literacy Services of Wisconsin M.A.S. Industries Midwest IT Solutions Milwaukee Breakwater Lighthouse Milwaukee Electronics Corp. My Choice Family Care Office Furniture Resources Operation Self Reset Ovention Pepper Construction Co. PRE/3 Qualia Sandler Training - Waukesha Savory Catering & Events Scanalytics Sebert Landscape Symbiont Science, Engineering & Construction T&M Partners Tax Deferral Services TechCanary Corp. The Concord Group The Dieringer Research Group The Osthoff Resort T-Mobile USA - Cesar Chavez Drive T-Mobile USA - Good Hope Road T-Mobile USA - North Avenue T-Mobile USA - Packard Avenue T-Mobile USA - Silver Spring Drive T-Mobile USA - Sunset Drive T-Mobile USA - Wisconsin Avenue Tri-North Builders Vertical Greenwalls Walcheske & Luzi Waterford Truck Service Wisconsin International Academy


As the largest bank headquartered in Wisconsin, Associated Bank has a longstanding commitment to strengthening our communities. From personalized service and customized financial solutions to corporate giving and employee volunteerism. We seek to make life better for all members of the communities in which we serve. What sets us apart? We focus on you, understanding your unique challenges and providing tailored solutions that meet your needs and help you reach your goals. We’re large enough to handle the most complex of business needs, yet still local and aware of what our clients and communities need to succeed. To experience the better side of banking, visit us at or call 414-283-2277.

Marc Pressler

Commercial Banking Segment Leader 414-283-2277 330 East Kilbourn Avenue Milwaukee, WI 53202

Deposit and loan products are offered by Associated Bank, N.A. Loan products are subject to credit approval and involve interest and other costs. Please ask about details on fees and terms and conditions of these products. Property insurance and flood insurance, if applicable, will be required on collateral. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender. (8/17) 12586 |



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Milwaukee Commerce, WINTER 2018

From the President “65% of the jobs our children will apply for don’t exist today” - Becky Frankiewicz, President of ManpowerGroup N.A.

Living with change: The only place to live This issue of Milwaukee Commerce looks into the future make-up of the region’s economy. Disruptive technologies, shifting demographics and new business models all converge to cloud that picture. Living with change seems to be the only place to live. Given this context, MMAC members will see a consistent focus in our effort to help build metro Milwaukee as a community of lifelong learners. As work changes the nature of jobs, the regions that will compete best for prosperity will be home to companies, universities and K-12 systems that prepare talent to be adept and adaptive. Developing talent that drives change and harnesses its rewards. But to be successful, we must invest in kids at an early age. MMAC’s “Be the Spark” program brings MPS seventh-graders into local businesses so they can experience a variety of career options and better understand how classroom learning can have real-world applications. Technology Education and Literacy in Schools (TEALS) is another effort promoted by MMAC. This program, sponsored by Microsoft and a private donation from Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele, aims to put computer science classes in 25 high schools. TEALS recruits programmers to guide teachers in delivering computer coursework. The goal is to introduce new skills that provide new opportunities to students who don’t currently have access. These are two small examples of a deep dive we are leading into matching our region’s talent needs with the future demands of our members as employers. Thank you for your support, and here is to a productive and prosperous 2019.

Tim Sheehy President Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce |


becoming a

'brain belt' starts with smart collaboration


Working together could power Milwaukee’s future economy By Chris Jenkins - Communications Director, MMAC

hen economist Antoine van Agtmael began studying the evolution of industrial cities around the world for the 2016 book he co-authored, “The Smartest Places on Earth,” he took a look at Milwaukee. Spoiler alert: We didn’t quite make the cut the first time around. At the time, our region had several of the ingredients needed to make the transformation from a former rust belt city into what van Agtmael and co-author Fred Bakker are calling a “brain belt” — an emerging hotspot for innovation. Milwaukee’s existing ingredients included a significant presence of large companies who emphasize research and development, several institutions of higher education and a livable city filled with cultural attractions and character. Since then, Milwaukee has made incremental gains in some the things van Agtmael thought were missing at the time they were doing research for the book, including an increased presence of startups and startup incubators, the availability of venture capital and increased university research activity. Add in one big seismic shift – the arrival of Foxconn – and van Agtmael, who coined the term “emerging markets,” is tempted to take another look at Milwaukee. “The idea that it could be one of the next in tech makes sense,” van Agtmael says. But the continued growth and development of all

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those ingredients alone doesn’t guarantee Milwaukee’s future success as a destination for innovation. The main takeaway from van Agtmael’s book is that it’s not enough to simply have legacy companies, startups and universities. For a city or region to fully transform, these entities must connect and work together. “Brain belts” form around smart collaboration. “I would love to come to Milwaukee, because it sounds like it has a lot of the elements,” van Agtmael says, in an interview. A similar thought has occurred to Joe Scanlin, the founder of startup smart-floor designer Scanalytics (see story, p. 20). Scanlin believes both startups and big legacy companies would benefit greatly if they collaborated more than they did back when he was starting his company in 2012. “When we were going through (the startup process), there was less involvement from local larger companies,” Scanlin says. “I think that’s better today. But I think that could still be improved. At the end of the day, a lot of the experiments that some of these companies are going through is likely far more expensive than if they did that experiment with a startup.”

Antoine van Agtmael

Sharing over secrecy Mike Lovell, Marquette University; Mark Mone, UW-Milwaukee, and Dave Pahl, Northwestern Mutual discuss the Data Science Institute.

On Nov. 20, M7 hosted manufacturing leaders including (l to r): Dave Sladky, HellermannTyton; Jeff Clark, Waukesha Metal Products; and Lynn Minella, Johnson Controls, to collaborate on solutions for the region's talent gap.

Traditionally, large companies have closely guarded their research and development efforts. They might engage with universities for research, but not without mountains of nondisclosure agreements and tight control of proprietary technology. But the regional success stories that van Agtmael and Bakker highlight in their book involve a different approach: One where companies prioritize collaboration over keeping things secret, connecting with universities, startups and even other big companies in their research efforts. One example they cite is Albany, N.Y., where a nanotechnology initiative at SUNY Polytechnic Institute started with an ambitious goal: Challenging Asian firms’ domination of the microchip industry. The university eventually attracted research support from firms such as IBM, Intel, Nikon, Samsung and others. Together, these companies could invest jointly in billions of dollars’ worth of equipment and research that might not have been realistic within any one individual company’s budget. By working in conjunction with a university, van Agtmael says, they could do so without fear of antitrust scrutiny. An incubator of startups and spinoffs developed from there. Van Agtmael and Bakker found several similar stories around the world, from Akron, Ohio to Dresden, Germany. There are signs that Milwaukee is warming up to this mindset. One example of collaboration can be found in The Commons, which brings together college students from around the region, connects them with the local innovation economy

It’s not enough to simply have legacy companies, startups and universities.

and gives them the chance to work with industry partners on real-world projects. Another example can be found in the June 2018 announcement of the Northwestern Mutual Data Science Institute, a collaboration between the 160-year-old financial security giant, Marquette University and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee intended to increase Milwaukee’s presence and develop talent in the emerging field of data science. (see story, p. 18.) “That’s exactly the kind of thing I was thinking of,” van Agtmael says. “The fact that you have incubators now, the fact that there’s some venture capital, is positive.”

Working together to grow the talent pool Another example launched in November 2018, when ManpowerGroup, Rockwell Automation and the Milwaukee 7 regional economic development partnership brought together manufacturing leaders from around the region to begin working on long-term solutions to the “talent gap,” projections that say our region will have more jobs available than skilled advanced manufacturing workers to fill those jobs over the next several years. Companies would still compete with one another to hire the best employees. But in this initiative, they hope to grow the overall talent pool they’re all drawing from. And if it works in Milwaukee’s manufacturing industry, it could serve as a model for other industries to follow. Van Agtmael says these kinds of connections don’t happen without charismatic, credible leaders — people he refers to in his book as connectors: “Someone who takes the bull by the horns and basically has convening power and can get these various people together – the people at universities, the companies, etc. – and have them work together.” - continued on page 10

For a city or region to fully transform, these entities must connect and work together. ‘Brain belts’ form around smart collaboration. |


- continued from page 9

Startups as laboratories David Zach’s academic training is as a futurist, but he’ll be the first person to tell you that he doesn’t have a crystal ball. Zach, who will speak at the Wisconsin Economic Development Commission Governor’s Conference in February 2019, has a few educated guesses at what will drive the economy of the future, including artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and blockchain technology. But what he wants to see happen right now is for Milwaukee to establish more pathways for the next big idea – whatever it is – to grow. “Rather than predict the future – what do we do now to enable more opportunities for the future to find itself?” he asks.

startups. If an idea works, you’ll know more quickly... and if it doesn’t work, you’ll also know more quickly. There’s value in both. “That relationship also helps a startup figure out its fate maybe sooner than later,” Scanlin says. “Worse than dying is being a zombie company. I think the shorter the feedback loop by working with corporates, the better. We have that capability. We have plenty of large companies here that could help do that across many different segments.”

Foxconn as a catalyst

After founding Emerging Markets Management in the late 1980s, van Agtmael’s firm made an investment in Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Or, as just about everybody More pathways will help in Wisconsin knows it as now, Foxconn. He remains an form new connections admirer of the company and its chairman, Terry Gou. “They are very, very good,” van Agtmael says. “They are “Our ability to connect people, things and ideas — the best operators in the electronics world, and that shows especially people, things and ideas that at first glance up in terms of their clients.” weren’t connectable — that’s how you create wealth,” Zach Van Agtmael sees Foxconn’s decision to build in says. “That’s how you create value.” Wisconsin as a validation of the overall climate for business, Zach notes that Allen-Bradley started with two guys, everything from the economic environment to logistics. Harley-Davidson with three. How can we ensure the next “With companies like Astronautics Corp. of America, small group of people with a big idea has a chance? Brady Corporation, Johnson Controls, ManpowerGroup, As someone who made it through the initial startup Rockwell Automation, there’s a base there that (Foxconn) phase, Scanlin has some ideas. He’d like to see more can build on,” van Agtmael says. “It’s not like going into capital flowing to startups, and support startups not just the boonies. The fact that they’re coming and building a in the early and late stages, but at all the critical stages in plant is a big plus.” between. Years before the Mount Pleasant-based plant churns “I think that the work ethic and the feeling of out its first device, Foxconn executives started connecting community is here,” Scanlin says. “We just need to find with universities and technical colleges on talent ways to understand first, and then support, the different development and research projects. It’s a first step, perhaps, stages of companies as they continue to grow.” toward the formation of a “digital ecosystem” – a term we Scanlin says Milwaukee’s large companies can help should start becoming familiar with. – and benefit in the process – by partnering with Todd McLees, the founder and managing partner at Pendio Group in Milwaukee, sees the arrival of “Rather than predict the future Foxconn as a pivotal moment that will – what do we do now to enable benefit Wisconsin well beyond the

more opportunities for the future to find itself?” -

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David Zach, Milwaukee Futurist

Milwaukee Commerce, WINTER 2018

establishment of a traditional supply chain (see story, p. 12.) “Truly effective ecosystems turn customers and competitors into collaborators,” he says. “One measure of Foxconn's impact in the region is how well they can help their customers, suppliers, and partners innovate.”

Collaboration beyond borders This spirit of smart collaboration can flow across state borders and other political boundaries. Kelly O’Brien says it must. O’Brien is the president and CEO of the Alliance for Regional Development, which advocates for business and political leaders to envision Southeastern Wisconsin, Chicagoland and Northwestern Indiana not as three separate places, but as one economic engine that should work together to reach its potential (see story, p. 16.) “Working together can bring benefits,” O’Brien says. “We need to continue to remind our elected officials that although their fiduciary duty is to their state, county or city, that the state, county or city will benefit by working across state lines. It is so critical that we break down those barriers.” The Alliance launched in the wake of a 2012 study by the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development that looked at

opportunities within the “megaregion.” After meeting initial resistance, the Alliance has made progress in promoting this mindset. But there is far more work to be done, from increasing university research activity to attracting talented new residents. “As a mega-region, we need to address our population and make sure that we are continuing attract people and ensure they want to stay living in this region,” O’Brien says. “It’s critical that we have a solid, strong population. That’s how we attract businesses.” We do, however, have an ace up our sleeve: A location in the center of the country with established transportation hubs and reliable access to fresh water. “As impossible as it is to know what (the next) 20 years will look like, assets like where we’re geographically located are not going to change,” O’Brien says. “So we need to make sure we are really at the table, understanding when and how we can be the best we can be.”

How do we get There? For Zach, the first step toward a more collaborative future might be as simple as not eating lunch at your desk. “There is no reason why we can’t do this,” Zach says. “But people have to be a lot less self-focused. Less tribal. Less partisan.

One of our greatest abilities is to find common ground. And I think more people need to go out for breakfast and lunch – when you break bread, you break barriers.” And no matter how much new development occurs in Milwaukee, Zach says we should be careful not to lose our sense of place. “Young people today don’t want dream homes. They want dream neighborhoods,” Zach says. “I think that is something that the city has to recognize. And it has to be organic. A successful neighborhood is based on trust, and trust is one of the things you cannot automate and you cannot outsource.” And while van Agtmael hasn’t visited – not yet, anyway – he hears good things about Milwaukee’s enjoyable, affordable and authentic culture. It’s one of the main reasons he says Milwaukee can make a transformation. “There are places where I would say it’s better to move (away from), and there are places where I say go for it,” van Agtmael says. “Milwaukee is one of these places where I would say go for it.” But, he adds, “You have your work cut out for you.” |


The rise of Milwaukee's digital ecosystem By Todd McLees - Founder & Managing Partner, Pendio Group

The exponential rate of innovation is disrupting entire industries and creating new ones. Technological advancements are outpacing our individual abilities to adapt. That's why this is an ideal time for a company like Foxconn to come to our region.

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Milwaukee MilwaukeeCommerce, Commerce,WINTER WINTER2018 2018


had the good fortune to spend time with hundreds of Wisconsin companies in 2018. One of my key takeaways from those experiences is that while we all know that technological innovations are changing the world, we don’t necessarily grasp how fast it is happening. Some futurists believe the next century will represent the equivalent of 20,000 years of progress at today's rate of change. Even if you think that seems like hyperbole, consider this: The World Economic Forum released its 2018 Future of Jobs report in October. It found that 54 percent of the workforce will need reskilling or upskilling by 2022. The Milwaukee region promises to be a very different place by 2030. Foxconn's operational speed and agility is the perfect ingredient to disrupt the mindset of our region and adapt to this new reality. Their presence will take us out of our comfort zone and stretch our capabilities — a great recipe for growth. We are witnessing increased collaboration in industry, education, economic development and workforce development. The impact for the region has the potential to be game-changing. For your business, the Foxconn opportunity is more significant than supply-chain projections would have you believe. The best way to take advantage of the opportunity is to establish your position in one of the ecosystems already being


of 1,200 CEOS surveyed said their current business models will be unrecognizable by 2023.

curated in the region. What, exactly, is a digital ecosystem? Deloitte defines it as "a dynamic and adaptive community of cross-industry companies working together to create new value. The collaborations often focus on defining, executing, and building market-creating solutions."

McKinsey reports that emerging digital ecosystems could account for more than $60 trillion in revenue by 2025. In a recent Accenture survey of more than 1,200 CEOs, 76 percent said their current business models will be unrecognizable by 2023 — only five years from now. They cite ecosystems as the primary change agent. Foxconn is undergoing a transformation of its own, from world's greatest contract electronics manufacturer to a provider of value-added solutions. A key epicenter of that effort is in Wisconsin. To be successful, they must build more than a local supply chain. They’ll build digital ecosystems. Business leaders who understand how ecosystems work are discovering new opportunities to: · Attract and activate passionate communities of talented individuals and organizations. · Collaborate and execute on solutions that are beyond the capabilities of any single entity.

- Accenture

· Co-develop new value with multiple players, often including customers, using the coordinated power of advanced technologies. · Create, scale up and serve untapped markets faster than before. · Accelerate learning and innovation, and the time needed to apply new skills and discoveries. Truly effective ecosystems turn customers and competitors into collaborators. Foxconn's ecosystem will foster profitability by enabling others to create valuable new offerings. So when you think about Foxconn, think way beyond the manufacturing of televisions and other electronic screens. Foxconn will have its finger on the pulse of technology, including AI, 8K video resolution and the 5G connectivity that will be prevalent by 2020. That will put us in a position to work together to create new solutions. Solutions that will help others reimagine the way we work. Solutions that will alter the way we educate the workforce of the future. Solutions that will forever change the way we interact in our daily lives. | | 13 13

By Bret Mayborne - Director of Economic Research, MMAC

Manufacturing remains vital to Milwaukee’s future, but will population trends rise to meet new opportunities?


After watching the percentage of our workforce employed in manufacturing slip from 40% to 16% over 50 years, is it crazy to still project manufacturing as a leading part of Milwaukee’s economy 50 years from now? Perhaps not.

utomation, artificial intelligence, Industry 4.0. Manufacturing isn’t dead — it’s transforming, with greater automation and integration of production processes. It used to be about assemblers on the plant floor, but now it’s about engineers on the floor and in the R&D office. See Foxconn, Rockwell Automation and GE Healthcare among many others as examples. The Milwaukee area has a chance to be at the epicenter of these changes. Direct manufacturing employment may not be as great 50 years from now, but the overall economic impact that manufacturing generates will still be significant. Milwaukee is also well positioned in high-end services. Do you know how many Fortune 500 headquarters Kansas City has, or Portland, Ore.? The answer is one each. Milwaukee has seven. On a population-adjusted basis, Milwaukee ranks in the top four for Fortune 500 headquarters among the nation’s largest metros. Along with manufacturing, headquarters operations ranks as one of Milwaukee’s strongest clusters. Nowhere else is the opportunity of the Milwaukee area more evident.

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Milwaukee Commerce, WINTER 2018

Forecasting the future is a dicey proposition, but the opportunities to make Milwaukee’s future exceptional are there for the taking. So who will make up the next generation of Milwaukee workers to take advantage of these opportunities? One of the difficulties of projecting the future is identifying turning points. Doing straight-line projections of a trend line is rather easy, but in the long run it misses the important points.

Slowing population growth could affect economic growth One of the defining demographic features of the Milwaukee area – and, in fact, most of the Great Lakes region — is slow growth. Fortunately, slow population growth and prosperity have not been mutually exclusive events in the past. Yet with tightening unemployment rates, to historic lows, slow population growth will increasingly have negative consequences on future prosperity. A principle feature of a prosperous future in the region will be stronger population growth. That’s one of the necessary turning points. Faster growth can come in many forms: growth of the indigenous population, better use of the population we already have and attraction of others to the region.

What does the region need? All of the above. Fortunately, natural population growth in minority communities in Milwaukee ranks stronger than in many communities. But gaps in education, and labor force participation have hindered this opportunity. As the region increasingly diversifies, there will be a pool of talent available, but the region will have to do a better job of leveraging the potential. Vibrant economies attract people. Net migration in the Milwaukee area has been fairly stagnant for some time. But similar benchmark metros have posted net migration growth, including Indianapolis, Kansas City and Minneapolis. So, it is possible in northern climates to attract people, but a vibrant economy is the necessary ingredient. To be attractive, there needs to be an aura of opportunity – the opportunity of employment, the opportunity of diversified growth, the opportunity of innovation. The building blocks are there but continuing effort is necessary to put the blocks together.

Vibrant economies attract people.

By Meghan Jensen - VP Marketing & Comm, The Water Council

Water technology, stewardship critical to Milwaukee’s future

In April 2018, MillerCoors' Milwaukee brewery became the first brewing operation in the world to achieve the Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) standard certification.


n one way or another, we’re all in the water industry. Water may not be central to your business model, but your product or service likely requires some aspect of water use.

Each day, businesses face the potential for devastating water-related risks, from operational and supplier disruptions to increased costs and reputational damage. According to CDP’s 2016 Water Report, water-related impacts cost businesses $14 billion. Government officials recognize these risks. In October, President Donald Trump signed the bipartisan Water Infrastructure Act into law, increasing annual federal investment in water and wastewater infrastructure from $2 billion to approximately $7 billion. The measure includes language from Sen. Tammy Baldwin to increase investments to advance innovative water technology solutions.

The bipartisan Water Infrastructure Act signed by President Trump makes critical updates to America’s water infrastructure, creates jobs and gives communities tools to improve drinking water systems.

Fortunately, you’re in the right place: Milwaukee is the leading water tech hub in the U.S. The Water Council represents more than 215 water technology and water-reliant organizations, and drives regional economic, technology and talent development to support the global water industry. Businesses from 19 states and 11 countries have joined the council to connect with cutting-edge technologies, best practices, new revenue streams, talent and R&D resources. While the Council’s mission is centered on the water solution industry, one of our key objectives is driving those solutions to water-user businesses that extend across our state, country and world. In 2015, the Council formed a partnership with Alliance for Water Stewardship, a global organization that helps businesses mitigate water-related risks and create value from water-related opportunities. The MillerCoors Brewery and Global Water Center were the first brewery and commercial office building in the world to be AWS certified. With companies such as Coca-Cola, General Mills, Mars, Inc. and Merck becoming part of the council’s network, businesses are re-thinking their relationship with water by viewing it as an asset that creates value. This convergence of water tech and water-reliant industries is the future of Milwaukee’s water tech hub. Our technologies and stewardship practices will make sure that existing and new businesses in our region have access to clean water. Meanwhile, businesses across the country and around the world will look to us for answers to water-related challenges. We’re ready. |


State lines begin to blur in the 'mega-region' Kelly O’Brien is the president and CEO of the Alliance for Regional Development, which launched in conjunction with a 2012 study by the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development that analyzes challenges and opportunities within the Southeastern Wisconsin-Chicagoland-Northwestern Indiana “mega-region.” The study recast these three geographics as one large economic engine that could reach its full potential through additional collaboration across several areas. The Alliance recently held its sixth annual summit, and Milwaukee Commerce spoke to O’Brien about the current state of economic cooperation within the region.


The original OECD report came out in 2012. Where have you seen progress since then, and what still needs some work?


We still have a long way to go, but the concept of regional economic development was so foreign just a mere six or seven years ago. Now, I believe the concept is something that people are more familiar with. Data shows that regions compete against regions. Although there should absolutely be sharp elbows when it comes to traditional economic development, business location and relocation, it’s not mutually exclusive. Working together across state lines — whether it’s on transportation policy and prioritizing projects, having a very mobile work force and (streamlining) licensing requirements and scaling training programs, recognizing clusters — it’s a cliché to say win-win, but that’s really what happens. You really have to be scaling these assets and sharing these best practices. The numbers continue to tell us that our mega-region is a critical component to the national economy. Yet we are lagging behind.

Q: A:

What were some of the main takeaways from the summit?

So often in my role leading the alliance, we find people who really do not understand the assets that are literally in their backyard. When we started organizing this year’s summit, everybody has heard about Foxconn going

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into Wisconsin. But they don’t necessarily know what that means, what they do and the impact they can have, not only for Wisconsin but for the mega-region. So we were really honored that leadership from Foxconn spoke (at the summit), and helped people better understand who they are and what they’re going to do. We built the day around highlighting these assets, from Foxconn in Wisconsin to U.S. Steel and the $750 million investment that it is making in its Gary, Indiana plant.

Q: A:

How is Foxconn’s arrival changing the region, and how will it change the region in the future?

I think it’s a little early for now, other than the buzz that it has created — which I think is a real positive, that they did select the Midwest, specifically Wisconsin. I think it has the opportunity to be very transformative. And based on Dr. (Louis) Woo’s comments at the summit, Foxconn’s leadership understands the strategic choice of being in Wisconsin and that it’s a part of the mega-region. It’s my job to help the other leaders in Illinois and Indiana understand where benefits can be realized without taking away from Wisconsin. Wisconsin did the recruitment, they offered the incentive package. They should take the first bite of the apple to the furthest extent that they possibly can. But then, let the mega-region take the second bite of the apple.

Milwaukee/ Chicago mega region

Q: A:

The summit included two speakers from South Carolina. How is their perspective relevant to the current discussions around Foxconn?

We looked at how BMW was transformative to Spartanburg back in the 1990s, and really looked at that in terms of lessons learned. It has had multiple expansions, and the number of employees are in the range of what Foxconn expectations are. They were really successful with doing a supply chain cluster strategy, that the alliance is now looking at to undertake in 2019. That has resulted in South Carolina being the No. 1 exporter of tires in the United States. The question has become when we have assets like Foxconn, how as a mega-region should we be thinking about the opportunities that these entities bring to us to continue to create wealth?

Q: A:

How important is it for business and political leaders to think of this as one region?

Critical. It is appropriate for political leaders and decision makers to have their state, their county, their city as their No. 1 priority. That is appropriate, and that shouldn’t change. But it’s equally appropriate to say that there are areas where cooperation brings such benefits. So we can’t let Lane A, traditional economic development, prohibit us from being successful in Lane B, which is working together in ways that will ultimately help grow and lift the regional economy. | | 17 17

BY James Hischke - Senior Director - Tech Advancement & Outreach, Northwestern Mutual

Milwaukee tech hub: harnessing the power of disruption


Technology is rapidly accelerating the pace of change across many industries, and Northwestern Mutual is being impacted just as much as anyone. When it comes to providing our customers financial security, they expect a digitally driven experience.

few years ago, Northwestern Mutual began a digital transformation, accelerating our business strategy, elevating the focus of tech skills in our workforce, and increasing investments in innovation, technology and startups to provide more value for not only our clients, but also our employees and our community.

Northwestern Mutual wasn’t the only business affected by technology disruption. We were hearing the same issues from other local companies. Northwestern Mutual decided to step up and be the catalyst to help move this region forward collectively. Advocate Aurora Health quickly stepped in as a corporate partner and we decided to work together to raise the tide, so we can lift all boats. We quickly realized that several organizations were accomplishing amazing things related to tech and innovation. Gener8tor, Startup Milwaukee, Rockwell Automation, The Commons, Milwaukee 7 Economic Development Partnership (M7), the Greater Milwaukee Committee (GMC), The Water Council,

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local universities, and many others were creating and investing in programs, events, and partnerships that were having positive impacts. However, all these good things were not coming together as a cohesive story nor were they having the impact at a scale and a speed needed to compete with other regions.

An "all hands on deck" approach is needed to retain and upskill the Milwaukee region's workforce with industry leaders taking a leadership role.

$27.6B Economic impact from tech dependent industries

- nearly one quarter of the total regional economic output of $119.2B

To understand the existing tech ecosystem and to begin to change the narrative around what “tech” meant to the Milwaukee region, Northwestern Mutual and Advocate Aurora Health partnered with several area organizations to conduct the region’s first technology talent impact study. The study found that tech talent dependent industries contributed $27.6 billion in gross regional product to the Milwaukee regional economy in 2017.

Technology is the common thread that is disrupting every major Milwaukee industry.



That is one quarter of the economic output for the region. The study also found that the term “tech talent” applies to almost 76,000 workers that support more than 140 industries in our seven-county region. Most alarming, the study projected that there will be 31,000 tech job openings in this region over the next five years. (Source: Milwaukee’s Tech Talent Impact Study, June 2018.) The technology talent impact study helped redefine what technology means for Milwaukee employers. Technology is the common thread that is disrupting every major Milwaukee industry. The mission of the Milwaukee Tech Hub is to transform the region into a thriving, innovation-based economy where technology, entrepreneurship, and innovation are core to our success. The strategy is based on three key pillars: talent, innovation, and identity; and requires support from industry, education, civic leaders, and the community.

76,000 89 53,000 tech workers

tech occupations


Progress is being made, but more needs to be done to ensure Milwaukee’s future success. Investments such as Northwestern Mutual’s Cream City Venture Capital, Advocate Aurora Health’s InvestMKE, gBETA Milwaukee, Startup Milwaukee Week, Rockwell’s Connected Systems Institute, 88Nine Labs, and the Wisconn Valley Venture Fund are only a few of the many positive developments and signs of the growing tech culture in Milwaukee. At Northwestern Mutual, we believe Milwaukee has the talent, resources and entrepreneurial spirit to be a vibrant 21st century city. It is going to take the work of organizations, entrepreneurs and startups to establish a vibrant and innovative technology ecosystem in Milwaukee, and we are only just getting started. Learn more about the Milwaukee Tech Hub movement at |


"Smart" floors from MKE startup help companies track customer traffic


ven during his college days, Joe Scanlin already was thinking about how technology could help businesses understand the ways customers use and move through physical spaces. First he built an app that helped tavern owners navigate the clumsy process of having bouncers check IDs and track how many patrons come through the door on a given night. Then, one day, he tore apart the wired floormat that tracks players’ dance moves for the “Dance Dance Revolution” game on his PlayStation. “It was, of course, able to tell where my foot was, where I was on a quadrant,” Scanlin says. “I figured if I could just use it to save that information about how long I was standing in that quadrant, it would give me the general idea of where I was standing in time and space. I still have it somewhere, all ripped up. I’ll keep that for a while.”

For Scanlin, that ripped-up video game controller was the first step toward launching what is now a primary example of Milwaukee-area tech start-up success stories. Founded in 2012, and an MMAC member since 2017, Scanalytics builds “smart” floors wired with sensors that helps clients — ranging from retail stores to nursing homes — precisely measure, track and analyze foot traffic. With this data in hand, companies can make informed decisions about how to make the spaces they occupy more efficient and effective.

2020 | | Milwaukee MilwaukeeCommerce, Commerce,WINTER WINTER2018 2018

Since its launch, Scanalytics has gone from approximately 15 customers to more than 150 today, from small retailers to tech titans such as Qualcomm, SAP and Intel. Scanlin, who grew up in Madison, decided to locate his company in Milwaukee after receiving initial funding from Gener8tor, a startup accelerator program with outlets in Milwaukee, Madison and Minneapolis, then receiving additional funding from Milwaukee-based CSA Partners.

Scanalytics builds "smart" floors wired with sensors that help clients - ranging from retail stores to nursing homes - precisely measure, track and analyze foot traffic.

“It made a lot of sense to build here around that support, as well as the access to talent and other resources that we needed,” Scanlin says. The idea of tracking customer traffic isn’t new in retail, of course. Companies have used video cameras to track foot traffic, and more recently have started to use data from customers who opt in to cell phone tracking. Scanalytics systems are more precise. And because they track customers anonymously without accessing any personal data, they provide a much larger sample size. The insights they generate have applications well beyond retail. In 2017, Scanalytics was awarded a contract with the U.S. Department of Energy to help determine how many people spend time in a given space to more efficiently manage HVAC and lighting systems.

“Over 90 percent of our lives are spent inside a building,” Scanlin says. “With that in mind, these environments should be more intelligent than they are. We take for granted how much a physical space impacts us from a well-being perspective, as well as productivity and efficiency.”

“To me, there’s an obvious ROI in that,” Scanlin says. “It’s not as much of an educational sale when you are saying, ‘Hey, adopt this technology and your energy bill will go down.’ We like anything that creates that type of environment.” | | 2121




The first Cristo Rey school was founded in Chicago in 1996, and it became a model for what is now a national network of Catholic, Jesuit high schools that educate students of limited financial means. Cristo Rey Jesuit High School Milwaukee opened its doors in 2015 and today is home to nearly 400 students who participate in a unique workstudy program that serves as the cornerstone for Cristo Rey schools around the country. With growing enrollment, the school has announced plans to move to a new, larger location on National Avenue. Students work five days a month at businesses in the greater Milwaukee area. Students get

At Cristo Rey, freshmen & sophomores are "drafted" to Milwaukee-area businesses for a corporate work study program.

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real-world work experience, a vision of potential future careers, and a burgeoning professional network beginning in their freshman year. Fees paid to Cristo Rey by the more than 75 Milwaukee area businesses who sponsor students help defray the cost of each student’s education. It works: Each year, 100 percent of Cristo Rey Jesuit graduates are accepted to 2and 4-year colleges. "We recognize that finding qualified, work-prepared employees is critical to the long-term viability of area businesses,” says Andrew Stith, president of Cristo Rey Jesuit High School Milwaukee. “We are proud to partner with over 75 businesses, large and small, in an effort to meet the ever-growing need for a diverse, educated future workforce for Milwaukee." 

Pathways High school offers project-based learning, such as an URBAN LANDSCAPE Seminar.

MPS school James Madison Academic Campus Students presented at Marquette University.

PATHWAYS HIGH SCHOOL Pathways High, a public charter high school located on the corner of 4th and Walnut in downtown Milwaukee, has drawn a diverse mix of students from urban and suburban areas. At Pathways High, students learn primarily through a project-based model. Classes are organized into nine-week, interdisciplinary seminars that include real-world (IMPACT) experiences, life skill development and the creation of “artifacts” – work products providing evidence of content and skill mastery. These artifacts often take the place of traditional written tests. Most seminars culminate in a final project that demonstrates students' understanding of learning objectives and application of content knowledge. Two - three times a year, students present their projects to the school and broader community during live public exhibitions. School officials believe public presentations of work to authentic audiences provide real world rigor and increased accountability, incentivizing students to do their best work. "I'm proud of the real-world experiences we are providing to Pathways High students,” says Julia Burns, Pathways High co-founder and board president. “Together with our business and

Milwaukee Excellence founder Maurice Thomas

community partners, we are developing a pipeline of exceptional young adults who want to remain in Milwaukee because they are connected to opportunities here. We're just getting started, though, and we need more businesses of all sizes to engage with our students so I encourage you to contact us.”

MPS SCHOOLS ADOPT CAREER-FOCUSED NAF FRAMEWORK Several Milwaukee Public Schools have adopted a career-focused educational framework made available through NAF, a national non-profit formerly known as the National Academy Foundation. Within MPS, NAF academies are small learning communities organized around one of five career themes: finance, hospitality and tourism, information technology, health sciences or engineering. In addition to their core courses, students who are members of a NAF academy take industry-specific classes and participate in work-based learning activities through established industry partnerships. Activities include career days, tours and industry visits, mentoring, job shadowing, project evaluation and part-time job or internship opportunities. NAF says its model of work-based learning “brings the classroom to the workplace and the workplace to the classroom” to help students establish a well-rounded skill set that includes the soft skills

needed to succeed in college and the working world. MPS schools using this framework include Ronald W. Reagan High (health sciences); Bay View High School (engineering, with plans to add a hospitality and tourism theme); James Madison Academic Campus (finance, health sciences and hospitality and tourism); North Division High School (health sciences and information technology); South Division High School (health sciences); and Washington High School of Information Technology (information technology and hospitality and tourism.) "NAF's framework requires schools to have an advisory board of leading professionals for each career theme,” says Mike Roemer, principal of Ronald W. Reagan High. “The NAF Advisory Boards are critical in supporting student learning and opportunities while also creating a sustainable local pipeline for Milwaukee.”

MILWAUKEE EXCELLENCE Milwaukee Excellence is a charter school authorized by MPS, serving students in sixth grade through high school. The school’s curriculum, which includes coding and computer science, is designed with the goal of 100 percent of students being accepted to - continued on page 24 |


- continued from page 23 college. Two years in, the school already is touting gains in closing the achievement gap for students from underrepresented backgrounds with improvement in math and English/language arts test scores. The school was founded by Maurice Thomas, a Milwaukee native who was named Teach for America’s teacher of the year in 2010. "A rigorous college preparatory education is a right for all students,” Thomas says. “We reject the notion that incredible academic results take time to produce in schools. After two years, we're the highest rated school in the city of Milwaukee and the 23rd ranked school in the state according to DPI."

TEALS Microsoft Philanthropies’ TEALS (Technology Education and Literacy in Schools) helps high schools throughout the U.S. and British Columbia, Canada build and grow sustainable computer science programs. TEALS is the only company-

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driven program that puts technology professionals from across the industry into classrooms to team-teach computer science with classroom teachers. Through TEALS, technology professionals share their knowledge with teachers while students benefit from learning how computer science is used in the workplace. Industry volunteers and partner teachers create a ripple effect, impacting the students they teach, and the many students who will study CS in the future. TEALS exists because many high schools want to offer computer science, but most don’t have teachers trained to teach it. To help fill the gap, TEALS works to equip teachers with the knowledge to effectively teach computer science. TEALS provides a short-term solution to the teacher shortage and helps schools build a longterm solution and sustainable computer science program by partnering teachers new to the topic with industry volunteers who have computer science content expertise. Teachers in these partnerships

learn computer science while teamteaching with volunteers until they are comfortable teaching independently.  TEALS offers three models of volunteer support (co-teaching, lab support, classroom enrichment) and four different curricula (Intro to Computer Science; AP Computer Science A; AP Computer Science Principles; Advanced Topics and Projects in Computer Science) depending on the needs of the particular teacher and/or district. Strong partnerships are needed with schools who need CS teachers and the business community who supply the industry volunteers. School recruitment for the next school year happens in the fall and volunteer recruitment happens in the spring.


TEALS is currently supporting seven Milwaukee area high schools and anticipates increasing that number for the ‘19-’20 school year.

Regional Economic Development Partnership

NEW AMAZON OAK CREEK FULFILLMENT CENTER TO EMPLOY 1,500 MMAC is a founding partner of the Milwaukee 7 regional economic development initiative. Its mission is to grow, expand and attract world-class businesses and talent in the Milwaukee Region. To learn how M7 can assist your business with expansion plans, talent sourcing, exporting, financing options and other business assistance, visit


mazon is building a state-of-the-art fulfillment center in Oak Creek that will employ 1,500 people, 50 percent more jobs than originally expected.

The $200 million development includes a fourstory, 2.6 million-square-foot fulfillment facility on 75 acres adjacent to the I-94/Highway 100 (Ryan Road) interchange. Amazon currently employs more than 4,000 workers across its Wisconsin operations and has invested more than $1 billion in the state, including infrastructure and compensation to its employees from 2011 to 2017. Amazon's Kenosha distribution center is 1.5 million square feet and employs about 1,100 people. "We are happy to have Amazon join the Oak Creek community and create more than 1,500 full-time jobs, making it the city's largest employer," said Oak Creek Mayor Dan Bukiewicz. "I am especially proud of the excellent higher education incentives Amazon will offer area employees through their Career Choice program. Whether you want to be a nurse, engineer, school teacher, or something else, Career Choice offers a pathway forward to meet those professional ambitions."

The facility, expected to open in the first quarter of 2020, will feature innovative technology that includes Amazon Robotics to pick, pack and ship small items to customers such as household items, electronics and toys. The facility will also offer positions in operations management, human resources, IT, facilities management, finance and more. "Anytime we have the opportunity to help in creating hundreds of quality jobs in Milwaukee County, especially for the people who need them the most, we will work hard to find solutions and partner with employers to make it happen," said Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele. "That's why we were so excited to do exactly that with a great company like Amazon, and why we will do whatever we can to help ensure that those jobs are filled by the people who need them in Milwaukee County." "We're delighted that one of the world's most successful businesses has cast another vote of confidence in Wisconsin," said Gale Klappa, co-chair of Milwaukee 7 and chairman and CEO of WEC Energy Group. "This significant investment by Amazon speaks to the competitiveness of our region for global companies and to the strong upward trajectory of our economy." | | 2525


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AMM photos - 2 pages


2 3

This year’s annual meeting celebrated members’ Sweet Success by sharing accomplishments, highlighting members and hearing Haribo’s perspective on Wisconsin. 1. Rick LaBerge, Haribo 2. Joyce Bryant and Susie Roberts, kalyANa 3. Wade Uhlenbrauck and Allie Sonsthagen, Bassett Mechanical; Goldbear, Haribo; Paul Kayser, Kim Bassett, and Jake Lamalfa, Bassett Mechanical

FaB Wisconsin’s Fifth Annual Meeting: Sweet Success 4. Shelley Jurewicz, FaB Wisconsin; Gina Balke, Ocean Spray; Arthur Ircink, Radio Tower Productions; Giacomo Fallucca, Palermo Villa, Inc.; Sam Maglio, Maglio Companies; and Dani Jones, WEDC (accepting the award on behalf of Cate Rahmlow) 5. Kim Stobbe and Caroline Glaeser, Denali Ingredients 6. Josh Keepman, Mullen’s Dairy Bar

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DO YOU HAVE A NEED TO SUCCEED? Then join the community of entrepreneurs at Milwaukee’s only full-service business incubator. Laboratory, office, and light manufacturing space immediately available, plus top-notch business support and mentoring. | Guy T. Mascari, Executive Director | | (414) 778-1400

Changing the economic landscape of our communities through design

Design with community in mind

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2 3 CASABLANCA BROOKFIELD 1. Dave Murphy, International Monetary Systems, and Bengt Reed Anderson, BDG International, Inc. 2. Errol Barnett and Ross Kohl, First Business Bank; and Scott Russell, First Citizens Bank 3. Tony Stone, Cultivate Communications, and Judi Murphy, Oak Hill Business Partners

MMAC's Business AFter Hours: Networking with a purpose FORRER BUSINESS INTERIORS 4. Chris Swenson, Business Development Pros; Ron Mottl, Casper Coffee Water & Vending; Tony De Almeida, AOI; and Jonathan Lapworth, CLA 5. Jim Olson, MSI General Corporation; John O’Neil, BSI; and Michelle Primus, Momentum Partners 6. Pat Koppa, Forrer Business Interiors, Inc.

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EXECUTIVE ROUNDTABLE FORUM: Small Business Success Stories Three 2018 Future 50 winners, Kesslers Diamonds, Geneva Supply and Connoils, shared their companies' success and struggles. 1. Molly Dill, BizTimes Media (moderator); Joe Gehrke, Kesslers Diamonds; Ann Vogel, Connoils; and Jeff Peterson, Geneva Supply 2. Adam Hanson, SVA Certified Public Accountants, and Michael Rampolla, SPEARity 3. Trisha Price, SPEARity, and Dana Griffith, Waterford Truck Service 4. Dave Polzin and Melissa DeBuck, Geneva Supply 5. Jennifer Guslick, MSI General Corporation; Gary Swick, SWICKtech; Harriet Pedersen, Commerce Industrial Chemicals, Inc.

>>>View more MMAC event photos




Great Taste. Only 96 Calories. MILLER LITE. HOLD TRUE.

4 5



©2018 MILLER BREWING CO., MILWAUKEE, WI • BEER Avg. analysis (12 fl. oz.): 96 cals, 3.2g carbs, <1g protein, 0.0g fat. |


WELCOME TO WISCONN VALLEY, USA. Emanating from the Foxconn facility in Racine County and reaching beyond the shores of Green Bay, Wisconsin is poised to be at the forefront of the next wave of innovation throughout the country. From applications leveraging 8K + 5G to the transition to 4IR manufacturing, Wisconsin’s economy is positioned for a once in a generation transformation. von Briesen & Roper, s.c. has the team to help businesses navigate the terrain of Wisconn Valley and beyond. We have worked with clients on every phase of the economic development process.


Site Selection & Acquisition





Government Relations Real Estate & Environmental Permitting

To learn more about our Firm and the services we offer to Wisconn Valley, please contact James Wawrzyn at

Milwaukee • Madison • Waukesha • Oshkosh • Green Bay • Appleton • Manitowoc

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At von Briesen, we’ve transformed 1

the traditional law firm into a modern platform for legal innovation. Combining our industry leading expertise with innovative technology, we take a collaborative and creative approach to problem-solving the most

ACCESS EVENT – Welcome to Fiserv Forum This unique event at the first Bucks preseason game gave guests the opportunity to see what Fiserv Forum has to offer and hear from Milwaukee Bucks President Peter Feigin about steps he’s taking to ensure success. 1. Keith and Diane Coursin, Desert Aire; and Christopher Whittet, Bottom Line Experts 2. Brad Netzel, Mark Sobczak, and Adam Perella, Sikich LLP 3. Peter Feigin, Milwaukee Bucks 4. David Gazzo and Annabel Briquet, Felss Rotaform; and Bridget Lazlo, Guardian Business Solutions, Inc. 5. Amanda and Jason Dobbs, SafeNet; and Jim Bernthal, Top Floor

>>>View more MMAC event photos

complex matters. The result? Game-changing advantages


for our clients.

To learn more about our Firm and the services we offer to Wisconn Valley, please contact: 3

4 5

James J. Wawrzyn 414.287.1476 |


SAME LOCAL FOCUS. ONE NEW HOME . As Milwaukee’s banking needs have grown, so have we. That’s not a coincidence, because we’re committed to offering the financial expertise Wisconsin businesses need. And, when you combine the best local knowledge with the security of a strong bank, it’s a tough combination to beat. We’re the same bankers you know and trust, now working

together under one roof in the heart of Milwaukee. Our new local hub of business banking means better access to the resources and services you rely on every day and an expanded network of possibilities. Together, we’re committed to the same goals, with the best team, tools, and tailored expertise we’ve always been proud to offer.

414-273-3507 |

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President & CEO, Town Bank 262-369-8800


Group EVP, Commercial Banking 262-966-7702

POLICY HASH WITH ERIN RICHARDS Erin Richards, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s education reporter and recipient of Marquette University’s O’Brien Fellowship in Public Service Journalism, discussed the impact student mobility has on Wisconsin’s academic success.


Group EVP, Commercial Real Estate 262-369-4223


Group SVP, Commercial Banking 262-369-8833


>>>View more MMAC event photos

Group SVP, Wealth Services 262-369-8804


Group SVP, Commercial Banking 414-255-1002 |


n In Our Clients’ Words

Culture Focused Designs

is very open to taking your ideas, taking your thought processes, taking your needs and combining that into “theStrang best possible solution that you can get. ” – Kim Sponem, CEO/President Summit Credit Union

The new M3 Insurance building that Strang designed has impacted our company. And, the short answer is that the “impact has been even more of a positive and culture enhancer than we had hoped. ” – Thomas J. Golden, Executive Vice President, Corporate Service M3 Insurance Solutions, Inc.


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Collaboration Space by Strang

FUEL LEADERSHIP LUNCH with Darryll Simpson Darryll Simpson, General Manager, Milwaukee Streetcar - The Hop, shared his story of over 30 years in the intermodal transit business. Guests got to ask questions about future expansions and get an exclusive look at the streetcar before it was open to the public.

>>>View more MMAC event photos

Waukesha | Madison |


Your business is growing. Internally you need employee handbooks and policies. Externally you need contracts and forms. What you need are attorneys and counselors that know how to protect you, your business, your brand and your team. Now What?

Attorneys and Counselors Rogahn Jones LLCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Business Transactional Department provides the experience, advice and counsel of lawyers accustomed to working in-house but equally as experienced at advising business clients as outside counsel. | 262.347.4444 | N16 W23233 Stone Ridge Dr., Suite 270, Waukesha, WI 53188

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By leveraging technology Rogahn Jones can provide a scalable virtual law department for your business and craft documents tailored to your company’s immediate specific needs while helping you to plan for future growth.


Rogahn Jones understands the impact its rates can have on our clients’ bottom line. As outside legal counsel, we have innovated our billing practices beyond the standard hourly rate. We set budgets and work with our clients to structure more predictable legal costs.


New members, ‘seasoned’ members and prospective members came to meet the staff and learn about what the MMAC does to improve their business and the business community. 1. Chasity Rodgers and Heather Ratlieff, BrightStar Care Milwaukee 2. Krista Weis, Andis Company, and Katrina Roesselet, Valentine Coffee Roasters 3. Jen Tighe, David Insurance Agency MKE 4. Dylan Allen from Hatch Staffing Services networked with other attendees. 5. Austin Anderson, Enterprise Systems Group; Mark Stanmeyer and Jon Eckert, General Communications

At Rogahn Jones we provide uncommonly creative and effective solutions that have one goal and one goal only: advancing your business’s unique interests.


Rogahn Jones LLC’s services exceed our clients’ expectations providing prompt, insightful and impactful legal advice on a daily basis and in times of business crisis.

Colleen W. Jones Chief Operating Officer 262-347-4444


“Focusing on innovation, quality and value, Rogahn Jones provides legal excellence with integrity.” – Colleen W. Jones

>>>View more MMAC event photos

4 5

Attorneys and Counselors 262.347.4444 |


New MMAC Members September & October 2018

Support your fellow members by doing business together. A Branovan Co. Powered by HALO Branded Solutions David Branovan, President 6505 W. Calumet Rd. Milwaukee, WI 53223 (414) 352-5000 Promotional Products

A&A Erecting, Inc. Nadine Love-Filer, Owner/President 2746 S. 166th St. New Berlin, WI 53151 (262) 786-4640 Contractors - Design/Build

Affinity Strategic Marketing Michael Quill, Dir. of Marketing 3747 Douglas Ave. Racine, WI 53402 (262) 909-5609

Marketing Consultants

Affordable Office Interiors Tony De Almeida Workspace Design Consultant W136 N4839 Campbell Rd. Menomonee Falls, WI 53051 (262) 777-2000 Office Furniture/Interior Design Dealers

Anderson Ashton, Inc. Matt Mehring President/Project Manager 2746 S. 166th St. New Berlin, WI 53151 (262) 786-4640 Design/Build

Annex Wealth Management David Spano, CEO 424 E. Wisconsin Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53202 (262) 786-6363 Wealth Management Services

Best Guard Services Billy Anderson, CEO 3902 N. Mayfair Rd., Ste. 2 Wauwatosa, WI 53222 (414) 745-4738 Security Guard/Patrol Service

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Milwaukee Milwaukee Commerce, Commerce, WINTER WINTER 2018 2018

Blast Cleaning Technologies Ryan Moore, HR Manager 6682 W. Greenfield Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53214 (877) 355-7577 Manufacturers-Special Equipment

Bold Coast Capital Ross Leinweber, Managing Dir. 861 E. Glen Ave. Whitefish Bay, WI 53217 (414) 333-1707 Financial Services

Connoils Stacy Peterson, President/CEO W241 S4145 Pine Hollow Ct. Waukesha, WI 53189 (262) 662-5533 Manufacturers

Enterprise Systems Group Austin Anderson Technology Solutions Specialist 200 N. Patrick Blvd., Ste. 450 Brookfield, WI 53045 (262) 565-6121 Technology Professional Services

FactoryFix Mike Schaefer, VP of Sales 1415 N. Cherry Ave. Chicago, IL 60642 (773) 520-4499 Workforce Development

First American Bank Russell Weyers Wisconsin Regional President 7027 Green Bay Rd. Kenosha, WI 53142 (262) 942-1111 Banks

First American Bank Kenosha North Branch Russell Weyers Wisconsin Regional President 1350 22nd Ave. Kenosha, WI 53140 (262) 553-1111 Banks

First American Bank Paddock Lake Branch Russell Weyers Wisconsin Regional President 23604 75th St. Salem, WI 53168 (262) 843-1144 Banks

First Choice Ingredients, Inc. Thomas Atkinson Chief Financial Officer N112 W19528 Mequon Rd. Germantown, WI 53022 (262) 251-4322 Food & Beverage Manufacturer

Freshii Andy Tran, Owner 250 E. Wisconsin Ave., Ste. 119 Milwaukee, WI 53202 (414) 921-0819 Restaurants

General Communications Kaci Cassidy, Marketing Specialist N57 W13466 Reichert Ave. Menomonee Falls, WI 53051 (262) 439-2000 Telecommunications

Geneva Supply, Inc. Jeff Peterson, Co-Founder/CEO 1501 E. Wisconsin St. Delavan, WI 53115 (262) 435-4935 Distributors/Wholesalers

Haywood Group Kalan Haywood, President 135 W. Wells St., Ste. 2 Milwaukee, WI 53203 (414) 461-1568 Real Estate Developers

Ho-Chunk Nation David Greendeer, Dir. of Business W9814 Airport Rd. Black River Falls, WI 54615 (715) 284-9186 Casino

Kriete Group Fond Du Lac 355 N. Pioneer Rd. Fond Du Lac, WI 54937 (920) 922-6866 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Group Green Bay 2090 Mid Valley Dr. De Pere, WI 54115 (920) 338-8400 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Group La Crosse W2189 County Rd. B West Salem, WI 54669 (608) 486-1555 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Group Madison 3722 Commercial Ave. Madison, WI 53714 (608) 244-3506 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Group Mauston 411 Commercial St. Mauston, WI 53948 (608) 847-4314 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Group Milwaukee 4444 W. Bluemound Rd. Milwaukee, WI 53208 (414) 258-8484 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Group Racine 2808 N. Sylvania Ave. Franksville, WI 53126 (262) 835-0100 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Group Sheboygan 4717 S. Taylor Dr. Sheboygan, WI 53081 (920) 458-0345 Truck Repair & Service

Kriete Truck Centers David Kriete 614 N. Broadway Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53202 (414) 224-9300 Truck Repair & Service LawnStarter Jay B 2904 W. Wells St., #203 Milwaukee, WI 53208 (414) 509-0965 Landscape Maintenance

Lucas Milhaupt John Ashe, President & CEO 5656 S. Pennsylvania Ave. Cudahy, WI 53110 (414) 769-6000 Manufacturers

Mid-State Insurance Christine Treder, Dir. of Operations PO Box 550 Mequon, WI 53092 (262) 241-0550 Insurance Agents/Brokers

Mil Made Group Billy Anderson, CEO 3902 N. Mayfair Rd., Ste. 2 Wauwatosa, WI 53222 (414) 914-1585 Business Management

Milwaukee Brewing Company Will Van Weelden, CFO/COO 613 S. 2nd St. Milwaukee, WI 53204 (414) 385-6087 Brewers

Milwaukee Charter Bus Company Travis Sanders 5122 N. 39th St. Milwaukee, WI 53209 (414) 369-6343

Transportation Services

Milwaukee Child Care Alliance (MCCA) Christine Larson Salerno, MCCA Chair 18735 Pleasant St. Brookfield, WI 53045 (414) 357-1901 Education

New Vision Ventures

Agron Ismaili, MD MBA 3260 E. James Dr. Oak Creek, WI 53154 (414) 732-3040 Health Care Services

PPC Technology & Solutions (PPCTS) Richard McDonald, President 1092 Riverway Ct. Pewaukee, WI 53072 (262) 695-7536 Industrial Equipment-Supplies/ Manufacturers

Shimadzu Scientific Instruments Amy Furreness, Field Sales Engineer 8053 19th Ave. Kenosha, WI 53143 (262) 995-8279 Manufacturers

Short Elliott Hendrickson, Inc. Gary Randle, MKE Office Manager 316 N. Milwaukee St., Ste. 302 Milwaukee, WI 53202 (414) 465-1200 Engineers-Consulting

SmithGroup Wendy Heintz-Joehnk Dir. of Strategy & Development 44 E. Mifflin St., Ste. 500 Madison, WI 53703 (608) 421-7314 Landscape Architects

Spaulding Medical Amanda Baltz, CEO 525 S. Silverbrook Dr. West Bend, WI 53095 (800) 597-4507 Medical Billing Services/Data Analytics

Spectrum Investment Advisors Manuel Rosado, Partner 6329 W. Mequon Rd. Mequon, WI 53092 (800) 242-4735 Investment Advisory Services

Spectrum Resources/A Division of Wild Impact Marketing Larry Surges, President W160 S6369 Commerce Dr. Muskego, WI 53150 (414) 630-5560 Promotional Products

Swarming Technology Steve Krezminski, President 2222 N. Farwell Ave., Ste. 200 Milwaukee, WI 53202 (414) 207-6400 Internet-Website Design & Development

Tall Guy and a Grill Catering Dan Nowak, Owner 6735 W. Lincoln Ave. West Allis, WI 53219 (414) 777-0770 Caterers

The View at Trio Jaime Nitsch, Dir. of Sales 1023 N. Old World Third St. Milwaukee, WI 53203 (262) 325-4618 Banquet/Meeting Rooms

Trane Building Advantage Jeff DeVor LEED AP, Strategic Solutions 234 W. Florida St., 6th Floor Milwaukee, WI 53204

United Milwaukee Scrap Daniel Arnstein, Executive VP 3100 W. Concordia Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53216 (414) 449-2121 Recycling Centers

UW Credit Union Bayshore Branch Jenny Meyer, Branch Manager 6016 N. Port Washington Rd. Glendale, WI 53217 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

UW Credit Union - Mayfair Branch Kimberly Omley, Branch Manager 2365 N. Mayfair Rd. Wauwatosa, WI 53226 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

UW Credit Union New Berlin Branch Marlo Gardner, HR Manager MKE 4850 S. Moorland Rd. New Berlin, WI 53151 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

UW Credit Union UW - Milwaukee Branch Jerry Johnson, Branch Manager 2200 Kenwood Blvd. Milwaukee, WI 53211 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

UW Credit Union UW - Whitewater Branch Emily Calhoun, Branch Manager 228 Wyman Mall- University Center Whitewater, WI 53190 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

UW Credit Union Waukesha Branch Ben Revak, Branch Manager 21215 E. Moreland Blvd. Waukesha, WI 53186 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

UW Credit Union Wauwatosa Branch TJ Ebert, Branch Manager 6510 W. State St. Wauwatosa, WI 53213 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

UW Credit Union West Allis Branch Katy Cowdy, Branch Manager 2525 S. 108th St. West Allis, WI 53227 (800) 533-6773 Credit Unions

Zone Mechanical North Frank Petrosino, CEO 9645 S. 54th Ave. Franklin, WI 53132 (262) 347-4180 Mechanical Contractors |


BUILD TO LAST. When you build with Spancrete precast, your structures will stand the test of time. That’s because we’ve been perfecting precast for more than 70 years. Since the beginning, we’ve focused on quality, service and innovation. As a result, our precast systems are faster to install, longer lasting, safer and more sustainable. From virtual design to installation, we’ll work with you to make legendary structures.

Today, Spancrete is building the modern classics. | 855-900-SPAN

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Milwaukee Commerce, WINTER 2018

Contact our team for information and ways to engage in your chamber. ADVERTISING & M7 INVESTING Jim Wall 414/287-4119 BUSINESS EDUCATION TOURS /FUTURE 50 Alexis Deblitz 414/287-4131 COMMUNICATIONS Chris Jenkins 414/287-4152 ECONOMIC TRENDS & RESEARCH Bret Mayborne 414/287-4122

ETHNICALLY DIVERSE BUSINESSES Marjorie Rucker 414/287-4172 EVENTS & SPONSORSHIPS Karen Powell 414/287-4166 EXECUTIVE ROUNDTABLES Whitney Maus 414/287-4130 EXPORT DEVELOPMENT Chad Hoffman 414/287-4156 FEDERAL, STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT Steve Baas 414/287-4138

FOOD & BEVERAGE INDUSTRY (FAB) Shelley Jurewicz 414/287-4143


BUILDING SMARTER AND SAFER FOR OUR FUTURE For over 70 years, Spancrete is proud and humbled to have built structures within the Milwaukee community where we live, work and play. Quality, service and innovation are at the core of every project. Our customers keep coming back to virtually design structures, which saves time and resources during the construction process. Precast structures by Spancrete offer lower building maintenance and a safer, more versatile structure for the long term. We’re bringing our customers’ visions to life, creating structures that will last for generations to come.

Barb Smith 414/287-4173 Jane Backes 414/287-4114 SMALL BUSINESS

DePere Bridge

Stephanie Hall 414/287-4124 TALENT INDUSTRY PARTNERSHIPS Susan Koehn 414/287-4136

Camp Randall

WEBSITES Carrie Gossett 414/287-4157 YOUNG PROFESSIONALS Corry Joe Biddle 414/287-4137

Milwaukee Intermodal Train Station

Green Bay | Milwaukee | Madison Chicago | Sebring

Andrew Davis 414/287-4141 | 855-900-SPAN |


Interested in advertising in the next issue of Milwaukee Commerce? Visit for full details or contact Jim Wall at (414) 287.4119

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Rocketship Transformation Prep 5460 N 64th St, Milwaukee, WI 53218

Rocketship Southside Community Prep 3003 W. Cleveland Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53215

Ralph Weber, Rocketship Board Chair

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Milwaukee Commerce, WINTER 2018

Profile for MMAC

Milwaukee Commerce magazine - Winter 2018 edition