The top area newsmakers, movers and shakers of the year

BizTimes Best in Business

Milwaukee
Downtown Milwaukee's skyline.

Last updated on March 17th, 2020 at 01:33 pm

What a year it has been for the Milwaukee-area business community. The city won the opportunity to host the 2020 Democratic National Convention at Fiserv Forum, which had a huge first year of operation. Speaking of Fiserv, the Brookfield-based firm made the biggest deal of the year in the area. Meanwhile, numerous real estate developments are popping throughout the region. The area’s retail landscape continues to change shape.

As we near the end of 2019, BizTimes Milwaukee continues its annual tradition of highlighting the businesses and leaders that made news this year in southeastern Wisconsin. They are profiled here in our seventh annual BizTimes Best in Business report.

This section honors our staff’s selections for southeastern Wisconsin’s corporation, chief executive officer, small business, family-owned business and community leader(s) of the year.

Past honorees include: Northwestern Mutual, Foxconn, Direct Supply, Coakley Brothers, WEC Energy Group, Gehl Foods, Steinhafels, Generac, Uline, Klement Sausage Co., Michels Corp., Good City Brewing, Aurora Health Care CEO Dr. Nick Turkal, Sherman Phoenix co-creator and entrepreneur JoAnne Johnson-Sabir, Rev Group Inc. CEO Tim Sullivan, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin CEO Peggy Troy, Allen Edmonds Corp. CEO Paul Grangaard, Badger Meter Inc. CEO Rich Meeusen, and Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce president Tim Sheehy.

This year’s honorees are:

  • Fiserv, Inc., which completed a $22 billion all-stock deal to acquire First Data Corp. and gained massive brand recognition from its sponsorship of Fiserv Forum (Story);
  • Kohl’s chief executive officer Michelle Gass, who is steering the company through a stormy retail environment using several new strategies, including a partnership with Amazon (Story);
  • J. Jeffers & Co., one of the Milwaukee-area’s most active commercial real estate development firms (Story);
  • Bartolotta Restaurants, which lost its co-owner and Milwaukee restaurant industry icon Joe Bartolotta this year and gracefully shared the grieving experience with the community (Story);
  • Milwaukee Bucks vice president Alex Lasry, who led the city’s successful bid to host the 2020 Democratic National Convention (Story).

Read all about what these organizations and leaders accomplished in 2019 in this special report.

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