MKE Tech News
Issue 33 - July 19, 2021
As I write this, the city is celebrating the Buck’s third win against the Suns.  It’s an exciting time as Milwaukee is being showcased on the national stage. 
It’s been long time since the Bucks were at the top – over 40 years ago.   Watching the Bucks rise makes me reflect how people outside the region have said the same Milwaukee tech community. Maybe it’s time for a new narrative. 
Just like the Bucks, you can’t count Milwaukee out for long. The Milwaukee Bucks invested in infrastructure and talent to build the team for the long term. They have showcased the best of our hard-working, collaborative culture.  And they have been tremendous spokespeople for the reasons we love it here – from its accessibility, beauty and quality of life at a low cost of living, to the people that make this place special.  
The MKE Tech Hub Coalition is committed to take that same long-term approach leveraging the assets of the region from investing in talent acquisition and development to showcasing the best of our tech ecosystem.  Together with our partners, our tenacity is clearly evident.    
The Bucks have put Milwaukee on the map this summer.  Now it is time for the tech community to build on the momentum. 
Coalition Updates
Membership Updates:
Welcome to new Bronze member: Komatsu.  Welcome also to our new community members: Booth Central,  CentareConnect Business ConsultingMilwaukee CountyRandstad.   We’re now over 90 members who have joined us in the mission of inclusively doubling tech talent in SE Wisconsin in order to drive enduring economic prosperity and create life-changing jobs. Thank you! 
Team News:
First, we’re excited to announce Molly Mulroy as the new Chairperson for the MKE Tech Hub Coalition Board. In addition, Rebecca Janutis joined our board as the representative for Kohls and Dan Renouard, Baird, joined as an additional representative for our Bronze members. Read more here
We’re also excited to announce the expansion of the MKE Tech Hub
Coalition team:
Jasmin Treske joins MKE Tech Hub Coalition as the Program & Events Manager. Jasmin graduated from UW-Milwaukee with a Bachelor’s in Communications. She has extensive experience as a financial professional in banking with a passion to connect and serve. Her first projects with be the Tech Career Expo and Reverse Pitch- MKE. 
Aaron Drews joins as our Research Associate. He is a SE Wisconsin native with his undergraduate degrees in French, Literature, and International Affairs from UW Madison and his graduate degree in International Relations and Affairs from University of Chicago.  As a data-driven organization, Aaron's research will help us understand root cause and leverage experience from other regions to create regional solutions to our tech workforce shortages. 
Melissa Howard joins us full time as our Director of Marketing starting August 1. For the last year, she has worked with us in the development of our branding, messaging, digital marketing, and national Advancements TV show. She has over 20 years in digital marketing experience. 
Member News:
Save the Date: The Coalition’s FIRST Tech Career Expo on September 14th (Learn More)

This virtual event is being held in conjunction with Summerfest Tech and is designed for early tech talent and adult learners looking to re/upskill into tech roles. The Coalition’s member companies are planning keynote presentations, high demand career pathway discussions, professional development activities, and corporate content to support the event. All participants will leave with a better understanding of tech and tech adjacent roles as well as how to best prepare for them. 
Bronze+ and non-profit members can participate at no charge.  All others have the opportunity to sponsor a booth. We will be leveraging Booth Central for this virtual event which will be open for booth setup later this month. Please plan ahead by identifying a primary point of contact for booth setup and staffing.  If you are interested in sponsoring a booth, please reach out to Jasmin at
Bold Vision
Showcasing Milwaukee as a Tech Hub
Help us promote Milwaukee as a vibrant and emerging tech hub
Our Powderkeg tech hub profile will be launching soon and we need more Milwaukee tech voices to showcase everything that’s great about this city. If you’d like to be featured, simply go here and submit your quote and a photo
We’re excited to announce that Startup Milwaukee Week — an annual entrepreneurship event held since 2016 — will now be hosted by the MKE Tech Hub Coalition and be called Milwaukee Tech Week. Tech Week will run from October 25-October 31. Call for content will happen in August so stayed tuned for more details. 
The US Innovation and Competition Act currently being debated in the US Congress is the subject of Investing in the Lakes: New Bill Could redirect tech money to neglected Great Lake Cities.  We appreciated the opportunity to weigh in on this important topic. 
Developing and Retaining the Next Generation of Tech Talent
To stay up to date on K-20 subcommittee priorities and progress, please check out our web page.
Registration for Student Showcase is OPEN! 8/11/21: Register here
Calling all members, prospective members and educators, you are invited to our Summer Student Showcase on August 11th from 10-12 to get a glimpse into what the students in the Coalition’s Pre-internship Program have been doing all summer. This year’s program was designed for college students, focused on the Ethics and Impact of Data and AI, explored how data is sources/structured/trained/leveraged in use cases across key industries, and reinforced the value of diverse voices in the development of technological solutions that impact the world around us.  Please show your support by registering to attend.  Members can request the student roster for outreach as internship/career opportunities arise at your organization. 
Mark your calendars! Hour of Tech is coming during Computer Science Week, December 6 – 12. 

Now in its 4th year, we are excited to announce that the MKE Hour of Code is expanding to become MKE Hour of Tech. This year’s program will build on previous years and feature expanded activities for students to reflect on the breadth of careers in tech and related disciplines. 

This regional week-long experience supports the national Hour of Code movement and we’re proud to partner with local business, education and non-profit communities to inspire the next generation by demonstrating a regional commitment to local tech talent development. 

We hope to surpass the success of last year’s Hour of Code event by collectively logging over 10,000 hours of mentorship with area students. Spending an hour of your time with a student/class may be just the spark they needed to explore something they had never thought of before. 

The Coalition has partnered with Kenge Adams at Connect Business Consulting to help design and power the experience.  Registration for corporations, non-profit organizations, K-12 teachers, and higher education institutions will open in August. Kenge will be in touch with those who have been involved in the past at that time. Please plan ahead by identifying a primary contact for those involved at your organization. 
  • Educator In-Service on July 8th:  Thank you to all of our presenters and those who attended the Coalition’s first Educator In-Service.  If you missed it and would like access to the recordings/resources, please contact
Developing new sources of talent while demonstrating a value for diversity and upward mobility
To stay up to date on Re/Upskilling subcommittee priorities & progress, please check out our web page.
Can’t find mid-career talent? Consider sponsoring a Registered Tech Apprentice. 

The Coalition secured a state grant to support employers who sponsor a tech apprentice to train for a role as a software analyst or software developer. This workforce strategy can help diversify your workforce and leverage more seasoned talent than might otherwise be available. The average age of a tech apprentice is 33 years old. Please contact if you are interested in more info. The next cohort starts in September and pledges are due as soon as possible to help with planning. For more info on Tech Apprenticeships, go here.
Leveraging cross-industry partnerships to accelerate start up growth and innovation
Apply for the Fall 2021 FOR-M Cohort: 
Applications are now open for the upcoming FOR-M cohort and will be accepting applications through August 23rd. If you are interested or know someone who would benefit from this free, inclusive program, follow the link above. 
FOR-M Community Workshop: Creating Startup Ecosystems: Sign Up Here 
Join us the evening of Thursday, July 29th for our next FOR-M community workshop focused on how founders can build not just a product, but a community. This event is our first IN-PERSON workshop of the year and will be in collaboration with FOR-M alumni, WorkAround. Sign up today!   
Coalition Members in Action
Milwaukee is among a list of U.S. metropolitan areas sometimes overlooked in tech hiring conversations. Still it had a high increase in technology job postings between April and May. According to a CompTIA report, postings increased 21%. Most of tech jobs were for software developers, computer user support specialists, computer systems engineers/analysts and IT project managers. Northwestern Mutual had the most Milwaukee-area tech job postings in May. Find out how many here.
After accepting a virtual summer tech internship at Northwestern Mutual, Lauren Brown, who lives in Maryland, learned about the many opportunities for tech professionals in Milwaukee. Check out her blog for some revelations about our city that made her want to have a tech career here. 
Board member, Rashi Khosla, was recently highlighted in the Milwaukee Business Journal for her work on increasing women in tech through her returnship program.
Research teams at the Medical College of Wisconsin, the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University, Boston University of Medicine, and the University of Pennsylvania will receive more than $27 million each for their individual projects aimed at reducing critical deficiencies related to disparities in cardio-oncology and increasing the understanding of the causes, consequences, treatment and prevention of cardiovascular disease among cancer patients and cancer survivors from diverse populations. MCW will study the effect of cancer treatment on blood vessels, which deliver treatment to the cancer and the heart. 
In a preview of his HIMSS21 session, the chief digital engagement officer of Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin describes how a mental health app has helped the health system's patients.
UWM alumnus and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and his wife, Anu Nadella, have given UWM $2 million to support the university’s efforts to recruit, retain and graduate undergraduate students from marginalized and underserved communities, preparing them for careers in computer science, data science and information technology.
Resources & Opportunities
Thank you to the MKE Tech Coalition staff in addition to our member organizations at Northwestern Mutual, MSOE and STEM Forward for their work to get this effort off the ground during a pandemic.  With the landscape analysis complete, the GM-STEM “Launch Team” is beginning to coordinate with TIES to host a design studio for later this summer. This event will inform our next steps as a region as well as establish a formal GM-STEM leadership team. Please contact Liz Taylor if you are interested in helping with planning this design studio. More information will be released once dates and a schedule are confirmed by TIES. 
Maker Faire Milwaukee STEM and Career Education Programs 
Maker Faire's Education Day programs are expanding. In addition to field trips and other programs at the Faire on Friday, September 24, Gearbox Labs and NASA are producing a series of live webcasts on September 10 with engineers and scientists working on missions to Mars, efforts to protect Earth from asteroids, building and manufacturing in space, and other, very cool stuff. Groups will have access to sessions throughout the day that will include Q&A with NASA innovators, demonstrations, and tutorials with hands-on activity kits and curriculum delivered in advance for classroom activities. Please reach out to for information about registration, fees and opportunities to underwrite the participation of neighborhood schools and other community organizations.
MATC Student Virtual Showcase 
Milwaukee Area Technical College has created a virtual student showcase for students from the Creative Arts, Design & Media Pathway. Be sure to check out the great work highlighted on the site.
Maker Faire Milwaukee 2021 Announces MKE Tech Hub Zone – Title Sponsorship Available  
Join Gearbox Labs and MKE Tech Hub Coalition as a sponsor of a special MKE Tech Hub Zone at this year's event. Tech Hub Zone sponsors will help underwrite the participation of Greater Milwaukee K-12 Computing Alliance and Tech Hub non-profit partners, as well as the Faire's free visitor admission policy that ensures access for everyone in our community. The Faire is THE place to connect with students, young adults and professionals who attend the Faire to share creative work in dozens of fields and align your brand with the Maker Movement. Reach out to for more information on sponsorship and exhibit opportunities at Maker Faire Milwaukee
Join Us To Raise Money for A Great Cause - STEM Forward Scholarship Program Fundraiser Golf Outing on August 12, 2021
Each year, STEM Froward awards scholarships to outstanding high school and college students from the greater Milwaukee area who are enrolled in STEM-related programs to encourage talented students to maintain high academic achievement standards and service. We believe that to add to Wisconsin’s talent pipeline; we must provide as many possibilities to students as possible. Join us for golf or consider sponsoring our annual fundraiser, the STEM Forward Invitation Golf Outing, on August 12th at Morningstar Golfers Club. Learn more
Save the Date:  SystemNow Conference, Call for Session Proposals   
The conference is scheduled for Wednesday, October 27, so mark your calendars. We are planning for most of it to be in person with some virtual options. This year’s theme is STEM for Good: Equity, Innovation & Change.  The Coalition would especially encourage those that are part of our collective efforts to inclusively double the tech talent in the greater MKE region to consider submitting a proposal that inspires others to get involved and/or take action. Please let us know if you would like a member/partner of the MKE Tech Coalition to participate.  #bettertogether #mketech 
Are Veterans the Answer to our Tech Talent Shortages? 
Thanks to the Wisconsin Veteran’s Chamber of Commerce for sponsoring Tech Month.  Laura Schmidt was a panelist to discuss non-traditional routes into Tech and we leveraged an  employer survey to gain insights into how we can continue to expand routes into tech for our veterans. Read more.   
Summerfest Tech 
Music + Tech + Pitch Competition: Where have we heard that before? Summerfest is the world's largest music fair and for the last 4 years has included a focused on tech. This year, Summerfest Tech is scheduled for Sept 8 and includes a free ticket to the music festival. Many members are engaged including Johnson Controls, American Family, Molson Coors, Deloitte, Brooksource, Concurrency, Godfrey&Kahn, Mars Solution Group, New Resources Consulting, ic stars, Wisconsin Tech Association, Young Enterprising SocietyCome join us! 
What angel and venture capital means to the Wisconsin economy will be a topic of a series of free meetings with a report based on the new 2021 “Wisconsin Portfolio” with a 3 p.m. arrival time. The presentation from Tech Council Investor Networks director Joe Kremer will last from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Attendees will then be invited for a networking “happy hour." Investors, entrepreneurs, corporate representatives and others interested in Wisconsin’s venture capital climate are among those encouraged to attend.
Each year Microsoft highlights the latest and greatest tech developments at Microsoft Inspire and there is certainly a lot to talk about after a year of unprecedented digital transformation. Join this virtual event, hosted by Concurrency, for a look at the top 10 tech announcements from Microsoft Inspire including the latest developments in cloud, how to best support hybrid work environments and newly unveiled technologies that everybody will be talking about.
3 health systems transforming patient care via bottoms-up innovation
Top health systems including Advocate Aurora, OSF Healthcare, and Sanford Health are streamlining their innovation pipeline with Ideawake. Join us in a fireside chat at the OnRamp Healthcare Conference to learn how bottoms-up innovation is transforming patient care. Panel features: -Coby Skonord, CEO, Ideawake -Kip McCoy, VP, Innovation Integration, OSF HealthCare -Kamari Green, Innovation Manager, Advocate Aurora Health -Carson Walker, Innovation Specialist, Sanford Health
Tech Ecosystem
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