Getting There: Joe’Mar Hooper

Joe’Mar Hooper
Joe’Mar Hooper

Joe’Mar Hooper
Executive director, Safe & Sound Inc.
Age: 40
Hometown: Milwaukee      
Education: University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, bachelor’s in secondary education and master’s in public administration
Previous position: Wisconsin market leader for CommonBond Communities

What drew you to Safe & Sound?

“I went to MPS, graduated from UWM and grew up in the Sherman Park neighborhood. So I’m all too familiar with the challenges. And I think Safe & Sound is really positioned right now to respond to a lot of the needs of the community.”

What do you bring from your previous experience?

“I figured out early on that my place was in government and the nonprofit world, trying to figure out how we can work on the macro level to make deep impactful change within our communities. I’ve been so fortunate to have had so many opportunities come my way to be able to make an impact, first in my time at the city of Milwaukee and then MPS … The leadership I’ve been able to exhibit in those roles has really prepared me for this role at Safe & Sound.”

What’s next for Safe & Sound?

“Figuring out ways to build capacity both with our fundraising and our partnerships to be able to deliver our unique perspective and model to more residents in more communities in more neighborhoods in the Milwaukee area … We’ve been a city that’s been really siloed, both on the nonprofit side and government side, and, as we can see from our disparities, it hasn’t done us any good. I’ve always felt that we’re going to do better together. And a rising tide does indeed lift all boats.”

Why should the business community pay attention to Safe & Sound’s work?

“We get results as an organization – measurable, direct results within the communities that we service throughout Milwaukee. The people that we serve, these youth that we serve are your future workforce. That investment that you make now will pay off tenfold down the line when these folks come into your organization.”

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