Longtime Northwest Side CDC leader Howard Snyder to step down

Has led the organization since 1983

Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, State Rep. David Bowen, NWSCDC executive director Howard Snyder and WEDC secretary and chief executive officer Mark Hogan at the capital catalyst announcement. Photo: WEDC.

Last updated on August 29th, 2019 at 01:50 pm

Howard Snyder, the longtime leader of the Northwest Side Community Development Corp. in Milwaukee, plans to step down from his role at the end of the year.

Snyder founded the NWSCDC in 1983. The organization provides mid-sized business loans to firms located on Milwaukee’s northwest side.

Since 2000, the NWSCDC has lent more than $10 million to projects that have created over 1,000 jobs, the organization said.

“Few people get to do in their careers what they seemed to be born to do,” Snyder said. “I think the secret to my longevity is that running the CDC was, and is, the pinnacle of my career. I never wanted to do anything else or go someplace other than Milwaukee.”

The organization has targeted investments in the city’s 30th Street Industrial Corridor, an industrial district that has lost thousands of jobs in the past several decades as manufacturers have left the area.

Among the organization’s notable real estate projects was the Villard Square project, an $11 million mixed-use development at 3427 W. Villard Ave. that combined a Milwaukee Public Library branch with 47 units of mixed-income housing. The development model has since been replicated three times in Milwaukee.

The NWSCDC is currently focused on investing in early-stage companies and small businesses, particularly those owned by women or minorities in the energy and power, food and beverage and water technology sectors.The organization was recently awarded $500,000 from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. capital catalyst program, and is matching the grant with its own funding, to support that effort.

The search for Snyder’s successor is underway.

“Over the next weeks, I will provide the board with an update on the process by which we will work with people in the community, stakeholders, and staff to select our next executive director,” Kirsten Thompson, NWSCDC board president. “I will keep partners involved in the process well informed as we move ahead.”

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