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WEDC names members of new Entrepreneurship and Innovation Committee

Lisa Mauer, the chair of the board of directors of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., has named 15 members to the new Entrepreneurship and Innovation Committee, which will meet later this month.

The WEDC board created the committee in response to a request from Gov. Tony Evers earlier this year. The governor noted at the time that Wisconsin lags other states in small business creation. He said the committee would compliment WEDC’s existing programs to assist entrepreneurs.

The committee will be co-chaired by Joe Kirgues, co-founder of Milwaukee-based Gener8tor, and Rebecca Cooke, owner of Eau Claire-based Red’s Mercantile and founder of the Red Letter Grant. Both are also members of the WEDC Board of Directors.

Other committee members include:

  • Nancy Hernandez, of Milwaukee, founder and president of ABRAZO Marketing and president of the Hispanic Collaborative;
  • Fern Orie, of Lac du Flambeau, CEO of the Wisconsin Native Loan Fund and chair of the Wisconsin Indian Business Alliance;
  • Craig Dickman, of Green Bay, managing director of TitletownTech;
  • Jignesh M. Patel, of Madison, professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and CEO of DataChat;
  • Larry Evinger, of Beloit, chief investment officer with Hendricks Commercial Properties;
  • Eugenia Podestá, of Madison, co-founder of Synergy Co-Working and senior director of Vital Voices Global Partnership;
  • Erik Iverson, of Madison, CEO of the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation;
  • Kelly Ryan, of Wisconsin Rapids, CEO of Incourage;
  • Zach Halmstad, of Eau Claire, partner at Pablo Group and co-founder of Jamf;
  • John W. Miller, of Milwaukee, founder and principal of Arenberg Holdings;
  • Sarah Lloyd, of Wisconsin Dells, director of special projects with the Wisconsin Farmers Union and dairy farmer at NelDell Farms LLC;
  • Carl Ruedebusch, of Madison, president and CEO of Ruedebusch Development & Construction Inc. and manager of N29 Capital Partners LLC; and
  • JoAnne Sabir, of Milwaukee, developer with Sherman Phoenix LLC.

The committee is scheduled to hold its first meeting on Monday, Sept., 16, at the WEDC offices, 201 W. Washington Ave., in Madison.

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