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Barrett taps Brown as chief of workforce agency Employ Milwaukee

A Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development official is taking over as executive director of Employ Milwaukee after its former chief was indicted for soliciting a bribe last year.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett appointed Chytania Brown to serve as executive director of Employ Milwaukee, the state’s largest workforce development board. Brown comes to the post after serving as administrator of the DWD’s Division of Employment and Training. She was previously chief program officer and vice president of compliance for Employ Milwaukee.

“It has been a pleasure working with DWD and the new leadership in developing new strategies to transform the workforce system to be more reflective to the needs of the 21st Century,” Brown said. “I look forward to my continued work with DWD at both the local and regional level.”

Brown takes the helm at Employ Milwaukee after its former chief, Willie Wade, was indicted on federal charges last May. Prosecutors accused the former alderman of taking $30,000 from the operator of Silk Exotic in 2017 in exchange for a promise to persuade Alderman Khalif Rainey to vote for a license that allow Silk to open a new strip club in downtown Milwaukee. The case is ongoing and a jury trial is scheduled for May 18.

Since joining DWD in 2017, Brown played an important role in bringing job centers to Wisconsin prisons and worked with a number of employers and labor unions in creating public-private workforce strategies.

“Employ Milwaukee gains a talented workforce professional in Chytania. She is an established leader and Employ Milwaukee will accomplish great things under her leadership,” DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman said. “I look forward to working with her in her new role, to help bring more family-supporting employment opportunities to the City of Milwaukee and the surrounding communities.”

About Nate Beck, nbeck@dailyreporter.com

Nate Beck is The Daily Reporter's construction staff writer. He can be reached at (414) 225-1814 (office) or 414-388-5635 (mobile).

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