UPAF names 2021 campaign co-chairs

Heather Dunn, Greg Wesley and Steve Johnson

The United Performing Arts Fund announced Wednesday it has named three Milwaukee-area business leaders as co-chairs for the fund’s 2021 Community Campaign.

They are: Heather Dunn, senior vice president and chief financial officer of West Bend Mutual Insurance Co.; Steve Johnson, regional president of BMO Private Bank; and Greg Wesley, senior vice president of strategic alliances and business development at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

“I am thrilled to have the support of this passionate group of leaders for my first UPAF campaign as president and CEO” said Patrick Rath, who was announced in October as the successor to retired UPAF president and CEO Deanna Tillisch. “Our performing arts sector needs the support of many now more than ever. Our focus is to retain our incredible local talent and position ourselves for a prepared transition back to normal programming when it is safe to do so. Heather, Steve and Greg are a dynamic team who understand the critical role that the performing arts play in our community and will serve as phenomenal advocates throughout the 2021 campaign.”

The 2021 UPAF Community Campaign will run from March 3 to May 26, 2021.

“Our vibrant arts community has suffered greatly during the pandemic, and they deserve reinforced recognition of being more than a ‘nice to have’ in our community,” Dunn said. “Our Wisconsin arts contribute heavily to our economic viability, and most importantly are a source we seek the most right now – connection, purpose, and inspiration. I look forward to working with my co-chairs on educating others on their impact and working to sustain them financially for years to come.”

UPAF’s 2020 campaign raised about $11.7 million to support its 14 member groups. The campaign co-chairs were Tami Garrison, community affairs director of MillerCoors; Justin Mortara, principal of the Mortara Group and former chief executive officer of Mortara Instrument; and Rolando Rodriguez, chairman, president and CEO of Marcus Theatres.

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Lauren Anderson covers health care, nonprofits and education for BizTimes. Lauren previously reported on education for the Waukesha Freeman. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she studied journalism. In her free time, Lauren enjoys hiking, kayaking, and seeing live music.