Abele names Taffora as county economic development director

    Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele today named Brian Taffora, co-founder and executive director of the Wisconsin Business Council, as Milwaukee County’s director of economic development.
    Taffora has led the council, a non-partisan business association, since 2009, working closely with major Wisconsin employers to create a business climate that encourages job growth and economic development.
    “Brian understands the importance of job creation for Milwaukee County and how to create the conditions for businesses to grow,” Abele said. “He’ll provide the leadership we need to achieve real progress on two of my top priorities – bringing jobs to the Park East and continuing job growth at the County Grounds.”
    Taffora helped grow the Wisconsin Business Council from an initial 12 members to 40 businesses. The group has advocated policies aimed at securing Wisconsin’s economic future and protecting its quality of life.
    “I’m excited to work with County Executive Abele on creating and implementing a real economic development strategy that creates good paying jobs and expands opportunities for all residents of Milwaukee County,” Taffora said. “I’m confident that with County Executive Abele’s vision and leadership, we will be able to collaboratively work with all municipalities, universities, colleges, trade groups and businesses on creating new opportunities for county workers, as well as retaining and growing existing businesses.”
    Wisconsin Business Council board chairman Mike Jones, MillerCoors vice president of corporate affairs, said, “Brian has been a trusted and accomplished advisor to the Wisconsin Business Council and its members as we advocate for issues important to the business community. We wish him well and look forward to working with him in his new position to create economic opportunities in Milwaukee County and grow the job market."
    Prior to leading the council, Taffora, a Kenosha native, worked as an investment adviser for nearly a decade, specializing in strategies to help business owners and key executives protect the financial interests of their companies and employees. His previous experience included business development with AXA Advisors and with Tolan Schueller and Associates, part of the Northwestern Mutual Financial Network.
    Abele said Taffora would work closely with the county’s municipalities on development opportunities. To facilitate collaboration with the City of Milwaukee, Taffora will have office space available at Milwaukee’s Department of City Development in addition to an office in the Milwaukee County Courthouse.
    Abele also announced that he named Damon Dorsey, the prior county economic development director, to a position in the County Department of Health & Human Service’s housing division, where he will continue to work on economic development issues.
    – BizTimes

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