The MKE Tech Hub Coalition is searching for a new board member that would represent Milwaukee’s diverse community following weeks of protests around the country about racial inequality and incidents of police brutality in America.
In a recent newsletter, coalition chief executive officer Kathy Henrich announced the tech hub’s efforts to crowd source opinions of community members to appoint a community member to the board. The new board member would “engage the tech ecosystem, specifically our black and brown communities,” Henrich said.
“I think for all of us, the last couple of weeks have been really challenging,” Henrich said in a June 10 vlog. “But I cannot start to comprehend just how personal these events have been to individuals in our black and brown communities. What we can do is join in a strong stance of support for the Milwaukee region’s diverse community. These events have really challenged all of us to reflect on our personal and organizational beliefs and action.”
MKE Tech Hub was formed in October of 2019 by six leading companies in southeastern Wisconsin including Accenture, Advocate Aurora Health, Johnson Controls, Kohl’s, Northwestern Mutual and Rockwell Automation.
A primary goal of the coalition is to double Milwaukee’s tech workforce by 2025 while accelerating and reskilling to build a diverse tech workforce reflective of the community’s demographics.
MKE Tech Hub Coalition’s current board composition includes elected members of individuals who have made financial contributions, which does not fully represent the community, Henrich said.
“Really what we want is somebody that is connected to the community, reflects the community and will help engage our connectedness to our diverse community as well as change and increase our perspective,” Henrich said.
MKE Tech Hub Coalition has grown to more than 20 organizations, with MARS Solutions Group and Baird as the latest companies to join. Galaxe.Solutions also joined the coalition last week after the New Jersey-based tech company announced its plans to bring 300 tech jobs to Milwaukee.
Since all three of these organizations are “Bronze Level” members of the coalition, the tech hub will also elect a new board member, which is separate from the organization’s plans to appoint a community member to the board. Each position will be filled by July, Henrich added.