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Thursday, December 4, 2014
Murray named partner of The Firm Consulting after exiting WEDC
December 4, 2014 10:56 AM
Ryan Murray, former deputy secretary and chief operating officer of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, has been appointed partner of The Firm Consulting, a Madison-based government affairs agency.
Murray resigned from the WEDC in mid-November and officially exited the economic development organization at the end of November to transition into an unspecified role in the private sector.

He was appointed to the WEDC by Gov. Scott Walker in July 2012 and had a controversial run at the organization. WEDC vice president Lee Swindall resigned because of disagreements with Murray in August. However, Swindall returned to his position three days later after convincing by WEDC secretary and CEO Reed Hall.

Murray has more than a decade of experience in public policy, public affairs and finance. His career has also included serving as the deputy chief of staff and policy and legislative director to Walker. He was deputy director of Walker’s transition and served as the policy director of Walker’s 2010 campaign. Prior to his tenure with the campaign, he spent five years in the Wisconsin State Legislature, serving in roles that included a senate chief of staff, communications director for Senate Republican leader Scott Fitzgerald, and committee clerk.

“Ryan is a strategic addition to The Firm Consulting,” said president and managing partner Buddy Julius in a press release. “He combines broad experience in economic development, ranging from his work with small startups to Fortune 500 companies, and has built strong relationships from serving for more than a decade in the administration and the legislature. With Ryan Murray on our team, The Firm Consulting is now well positioned to support our clients’ needs for advocacy and growth.”

Beyond his career, Murray is a founding board member of The BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation and a board member of the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership.

“Joining The Firm is a natural extension of my work assisting Wisconsin businesses and communities,” Murray said in a press release. “The Firm has built an impressive record of assisting unique clients across the business spectrum, including many innovators and early stage business supporters. I am excited to join a great team that can continue to build on a strong foundation to help its clients reach even greater heights.”

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Goddard School holding grand opening for Pleasant Prairie facility
December 4, 2014 10:59 AM
The Goddard School will celebrate the grand opening of its second Wisconsin facility during a public event on Saturday.
The early childhood education center is located at 7420 91st Ave. in Pleasant Prairie in a brand new building that will accommodate 132 full-time students.

The school belongs to a national network of more than 400 Goddard Schools across the country that serve infants as young as 6 weeks old to 6-year-old children, with additional before-and after-school enrichment opportunities for children through age 8.

The Goddard School, which operates with a franchise model, follows a philosophy of “learning through play.”

“We just believe that children learn best when they’re learning through play,” said Pleasant Prairie franchise owner Sarah Hall, whose 1-year-old son, Erik, has been enrolled in The Goddard School system.

The Goddard School centers teach children with a curriculum structured largely by an education advisory board, according to Hall. That curriculum includes focus areas in personal and social development, language and literacy, mathematics, science, nature studies, self-help skills, and wellness activities such as yoga.  

“This program is based on academic research that states children experience the deepest, most genuine learning when they are having fun,” the school’s website explains.

The Goddard School network targets early childhood as research shows that children learn more in their first years of life than during any other stage, Hall said.

“It’s very important to set the foundation good during your first several years in life, and we really feel that the Goddard School can provide that for our children and our families,” she said.

The Pleasant Prairie center opened to families in late October. The center, housed in a single-story, 8,000-square-foot building, has 14 staff members, including teachers with degrees in early childhood education or a related field.

The Pleasant Prairie facility currently teaches about 60 students and is enrolling children in all its programs. None of the programs require waiting lists yet, but Hall anticipates having to start waiting lists for some of the age groups early next year.

She is not certain when the school will hit its capacity but estimates that will be sometime next year as well.

During the grand opening on Saturday, which is scheduled to run from 10 a.m. to noon, area families will have an opportunity to tour the school, meet staff, participate in winter-themed crafts and activities, enter a raffle and enjoy light refreshments. The grand opening is open to the public, particularly families seeking “quality early childhood education programming,” Hall said.

“Our goals are to be the leader in early childhood education in our community” and be recognized for the quality of The Goddard School’s programming and facility, she said.

The Goddard School’s other Wisconsin school is located at 3355 Intertech Drive in Brookfield.

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Brewers extend contract with Timber Rattlers
December 4, 2014 11:02 AM
The Milwaukee Brewers announced a four-year player development contract extension with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers of the Midwest League through the 2020 season.
The Timber Rattlers play their home games at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium in Appleton.

The announcement was made jointly by Brewers president of baseball operations and general manager Doug Melvin and Timber Rattlers president Rob Zerjav.
“We thoroughly enjoy the professional working relationship that President Rob Zerjav and the Timber Rattlers provide to the Milwaukee Brewers,” Melvin said. “This long-term relationship continues to show the trust and confidence that we have in working together as we continue to develop future Major League players.”
The 2015 season will mark the seventh season of affiliation between the Brewers and Timber Rattlers. The partnership officially began on Oct. 1, 2008 as part of a four-year agreement. The organizations announced a four-year extension through the 2016 season on June 29, 2011.
This past season, the Timber Rattlers went 72-67 during the regular season and qualified for the postseason after clinching a second-half Wild Card berth in the Midwest League’s Western Division. It marked Wisconsin’s second postseason appearance over the past three seasons (also 2012 when they won the Midwest League championship).
“Our relationship with the entire Brewers organization has been a special one for the Timber Rattlers, for the local business community in the Fox Valley and, most importantly, for our fans,” Zerjav said. “The Brewers provided us the team that brought home the first Midwest League championship in Timber Rattlers history and it has been great to see the success of former Rattlers now making an impact at the big league level in Milwaukee. We look forward to many more years of this great partnership both on and off the field.”

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Conference will feature ‘Entrepreneurship Over Easy’
December 4, 2014 11:04 AM
The United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship, in conjunction with the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater College of Business & Economics and BizStarts, will host a free breakfast series, “Entrepreneurship Over Easy” for Wisconsin business professionals and entrepreneurs.
The series will kick off on Friday, Dec. 5, at the Schlitz Park Auditorium in Milwaukee from 7:30 to 10 a.m. The business breakfast series is designed to show attendees how to increase their professional networks, stay connected to leading economic trends and issues in Wisconsin and provide business-building tools for success.
The lead topic will be, “Economic Projections in the New Year: Wisconsin in 2015,” given by Russ Kashian, director of the Fiscal & Economic Research Center and a professor of economics at UW-Whitewater. Kashian’s theme, “As Wisconsin goes, so goes Wisconsin,” will focus on the uniqueness of the Wisconsin economy within the larger U.S. economy in 2015. Kashian also will highlight the expected growth segments within the Wisconsin economy that attendees can leverage to grow their businesses.

“The current economic and political uncertainty across the nation and in Wisconsin makes business planning extremely challenging. We’re pleased to have Dr. Kashian present his forecast for Wisconsin’s economy in 2015, which will give our local business professionals and entrepreneurs a head start in projecting their own business forecasts for the coming year,” said Patrick Snyder, executive director for the USASBE.
Attendees also will hear, “Difference-Making Sales Training and Performance,” given by Jimmy Peltier, director of the UW-Whitewater Institute for Sales Excellence. Peltier will offer insights into effective selling and sales management tools needed for today’s nimble organization. Key takeaways include a step-by-step guide to sales success, including what it takes to close a deal, and industry best practices.
BizSTARTS president Dan Steininger will emcee the event and share his own comments throughout the morning.

The free event is being hosted by BizStarts Milwaukee and is held at Schlitz Park in Milwaukee at 1555 Rivercenter Drive. Seating is limited. To register to attend, click here.

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Children’s Hospital to hold Delafield clinic open house
December 4, 2014 11:07 AM
The Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin Delafield Clinic opened on Monday, giving patients and families in Waukesha County a more convenient place to receive quality health care.
The community can get a first look at the newly constructed, 30,000-square-foot, two-story building at an open house on Saturday from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. The clinic is located at 3195 Hillside Drive near Interstate 94.

Physicians, nurse practitioners, audiologists, speech therapists and physical therapists will be on hand to provide guided tours of the clinic, along with visits from team mascots, snacks for kids and families, and a chance to win tickets to upcoming sporting events.

The clinic provides specialty care in asthma/allergy, cardiology, dermatology, ear, nose and throat, gastroenterology, orthopedics, speech and audiology, and urology; primary care; imaging; and physical and occupational therapy for children and adolescents.

Additionally, Skywalk Pharmacy opened a 900-square-foot remote dispensing site on the clinic’s second floor. The pharmacy also has locations at the Children’s Hospital’s main campus in Wauwatosa and at its New Berlin clinic, the latter of which opened in August.

Read more about the new clinic in the next issue of BizTimes Milwaukee coming out on Monday.

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BizTracker: Thanksgiving weekend retail spending fell 11%
December 4, 2014 11:10 AM
Retail spending over the Thanksgiving weekend fell 11 percent, its second consecutive annual decline, according to National Retail Federation.
Total spending from Thursday through Sunday sank 11 percent from a year earlier to $50.9 billion, according to the NRF’s Thanksgiving Weekend Spending Survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics. Shoppers spent an average $380.95, down 6.4 percent from $407.02 a year earlier.

Total shopping, including multiple trips by the same shopper, was also down during the weekend (233.3 million vs. 248.6 million a year ago).

For more, read BizTimes BizTracker.

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Wade donates lead gift to Marquette summer reading program
December 4, 2014 11:12 AM
Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade has donated a lead gift to Marquette University’s Ralph C. Hartman Literacy and Learning Center to launch a summer reading program that will bear his name.
Wade played basketball for Marquette University while attending the school from 2000 to 2003, when he led the team to its first Final Four appearance since 1977. He is donating the funds through his Wade’s World Foundation, which assists community-based organizations focused on serving youth with educational, health and social programming.

The Dwayne Wade “Live to Dream” Summer Reading Program, facilitated through the Hartman Center, will cater to Milwaukee second- and third-grade students and will advance the center’s current school-year reading program. The center acts as a teaching, research and service site where the university’s undergraduate teachers who are preparing for their careers tutor inner-city students in reading and math.

Wade has announced that he will donate $65,000 each year for three years to the program and is encouraging others to match that amount in order to fund the program for six years.

“We believe that every child deserves a shot, and I am proud to impact children on the very same campus of Marquette University where I was a student,” Wade said. “My hope is that the children will envision themselves as future Marquette students where they can one day transform their lives through higher education.”

Through the new summer reading program, which is slated to begin in 2015, participating students will also be granted free transportation to and from the Hartman Center on the university’s campus.

To ramp up support for the new program, Marquette will hold a book drive during the Dec. 6 Marquette v. Wisconsin men’s basketball game at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. The drive will collect new and gently used children’s books to benefit the Hartman Center and partner schools.

Individuals interested in donating to the “Live to dream” Summer Reading Program should visit

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Bubbler Quote of the Week
December 4, 2014 11:15 AM

“Now here is where my challenge to you tests your mettle. I ask that you also think of one talent you have that you could share and an amount of time, say five hours, in the next year.”
~Raejean Kanter, executive vice president of The Falk Group and recipient of the 2014 BizTimes Lifetime Achievement Award in Philanthropy.
Read Tuesday’s Milwaukee Biz Blog by Kanter: Celebrate ‘Giving Tuesday’ with gifts of time, talent and treasure

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Hot Bubbler Books
December 4, 2014 11:17 AM
Five bestselling business books you should read:
1. “For Love of Country,” by Howard Schultz and Rajiv Chandrasekaran
2. “A Path Appears,” by Sheryl WuDunn and Nicholas Kristof
3. “Hooked,” by Nir Eyal
4. “Rookie Smarts,” by Liz Wiseman
5. “Essentialism,” by Greg McKeown

Courtesy of

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Bubbler Calendar
December 4, 2014 11:18 AM

*Thursday, Dec. 4, the Milwaukee Press Club will hold its annual “Meet the Media” event as it celebrates its 129th anniversary. The event gives the public a chance to interact one on one with media personnel from outlets across the region. Attendees will also be entertained by more than 40 “celebrity bartenders,” including media professionals and several community and business leaders. The event will run from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Newsroom Pub, home to the Milwaukee Press Club, at 137 E. Wells St. in downtown Milwaukee. The event is free and open to the public but requires advanced registration at

*Friday, Dec. 5, the Milwaukee Bucks will challenge the Miami Heat at the BMO Harris Bradley Center, located at 1001 N. 4th St. in Milwaukee. The game will begin at 7:30 p.m. More information and tickets are available by visiting

*Tuesday, Dec. 9, FUEL Milwaukee will conclude its 2014 networking series with a “Purely Social @ Surg on the Water.” Purely Social events, which are free and open to both FUEL members and non-members, give attendees a chance to explore a variety of Milwaukee bars, restaurants and venues as well as enjoy appetizers and drink specials. Attendees are also able to connect with other young professionals and become acquainted with the missions of area nonprofits. The December event will highlight the work of Our Next Generation, Inc., and will sponsor a toy drive for the organization. Additionally, the event will feature a live jazz performance, thanks to the United Performing Arts Fund. Festivities will run from 6 to 9 p.m. Surg on the Water is located at 102 N. Water St. in Milwaukee. For more information or to register, visit

*Thursday, Dec. 11, the Waukesha County Business Alliance will hold an informational event on “Key Industries for Wisconsin in 2015 and Beyond” with a keynote address by Gov. Scott Walker. The breakfast event will also feature a panel of industry thought leaders who will share their perspectives on business in 2015. Industry experts will represent health care, food and beverage, advanced manufacturing, and sports and entertainment. The event will run from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at the Sheraton Milwaukee Brookfield Hotel, located at 375 S. Moorland Rd. in Brookfield. Cost is $50 for alliance members and $500 for a corporate table of 10. Interested attendees who are not alliance members should call 262-542-4249. For more information or to register, click here. BizTimes Media is serving as the event media partner.

*Thursday, Dec. 11, the Greater Brookfield Chamber of Commerce will hold a “Business After 5” networking event at Sunset Playhouse, located at 800 Elm Grove Rd. in Elm Grove. The event will run from 5 to 7 p.m. Cost is $10 for chamber members who pre-register and $15 at the door. Cost is $15 for first-time attendees and $40 for non-members who have attended previous series events. For more information or to register, click here.

*Friday, Dec. 19, BizTimes Media will honor the impact of top health care professionals, organizations and volunteers during the 2014 Health Care Heroes breakfast. The awards program features a range of award categories, including advancements in health care, corporate achievement in health care, community service, executive leadership, and health care staff. Award recipients, selected from a pool of nominations, were announced earlier this month. The event, sponsored by Paul Davis Restoration & Remodeling, will run from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, located at 1721 W. Canal St. in Milwaukee. Cost is $50 for individuals and $400 for a corporate table of eight. For more information or to register, visit

*Friday, Dec. 19, the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce will hold a breakfast roundtable event with Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch. The free event will focus on exporting the state’s goods and services. The roundtable will run from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at the MMAC’s offices, located at 756 N. Milwaukee St. Suite 400 in downtown Milwaukee. For more information or to register, click here.

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BizTimes Poll Question
December 4, 2014 11:21 AM
Should the BMO Harris Bradley Center and Wisconsin Center District boards be merged to form one downtown entertainment district board?
Tell us what you think by responding to the BizTimes Poll Question today.

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Bubbler Networking Resources

» African American Chamber of Commerce Milwaukee
» American Marketing Association-Milwaukee Chapter
» Association of Management Professionals LLC
» Business Marketing Association-Milwaukee
» Conservative Young Professionals of Milwaukee
» Creative Alliance of Greater Milwaukee
» Executive Women International-Milwaukee Chapter
» Executive Women's Golf Association-Milwaukee Chapter
» FUEL Milwaukee
» Grandville-Brown Deer Chamber of Commerce
» Greater Brookfield Chamber of Commerce
» Mequon-Thiensville Chamber of Commerce
» Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC)
» National Association of Women Business Owners
» Professional Dimensions
» Public Relations Society of America - Wisconsin Chapter,
» South Suburban Chamber of Commerce
» Sheboygan County Chamber of Commerce
» Summit Young Professionals
» Tempo Waukesha
» Tempo Milwaukee » Tempo Washington County
» The Gateway to Milwaukee
» Waukesha County Business Alliance
» West Allis/West Milwaukee Chamber of Commerce
» Wisconsin Better Business Bureau
» Women's FOCUS
» Young Professionals of Waukesha County
» YP Impact

Erica Breunlin BizTimes Bubbler Weekly is compiled by BizTimes Milwaukee reporter Erica Breunlin. This bulletin is published every Thursday morning. Send news tips to or call her at (414) 336-7121.
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