YP groups to co-host events addressing socioeconomic disparities

Inclusive talent attraction theme of collaborative programming

Annie Hernandez, Alex Boschult and Dane Gagnon of United Way of Greater Milwaukee

Several Milwaukee young professional groups are working together to provide a platform for discussion of Milwaukee’s socioeconomic disparities.

A cohort of YP organizations will together host two upcoming events focused on inclusive talent attraction and retention in Milwaukee. The aim of the programming is to introduce Milwaukee’s young professional groups to each other and foster collaboration, while generating ideas to address city challenges, said Rita DeMerit, project manager at NEWaukee.

Annie Hernandez, Alex Boschult and Dane Gagnon of United Way of Greater Milwaukee
Annie Hernandez, Alex Boschult and Dane Gagnon of United Way of Greater Milwaukee at a YP Week event in 2016.

“We just hope that the young professional groups in Milwaukee realize how important it is to work together and be more of a joint force instead of being siloed in our own separate areas thinking that we’re competing against each other,” DeMerit said. “We all have the same goal of trying to make Milwaukee a better place for everyone.”

Blueprints for Milwaukee will be held Wednesday, April 26, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Milwaukee City Hall Rotunda. At the event, young professionals and city government leaders will discuss immigration; education; transit; sustainability; cultural competency; public safety; arts, culture and public space; and the small business ecosystem, and how these issues factor into talent attraction and retention in Milwaukee.

The groups hosting the Blueprints event are: NEWaukee, ONE Milwaukee, National Association of Asian Professionals, FUEL Milwaukee, Rotaract Club of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Urban League Young Professionals, and Hispanic Professionals of Greater Milwaukee.

Following the Blueprints event, YP leaders and city officials will meet regularly to discuss the viability of the ideas.

There also will be a YP networking event, “All Boats Rise: Milwaukee’s Largest YP Happy Hour,” on Friday, April 28 from 6 to 10 p.m. at 13 different bars on Old World Third Street in Milwaukee. It will include 14 young professional groups, who will join together for a joint social at 8 p.m. at Red, White and Blue.

The participating groups are: Milwaukee Urban League Young Professionals, FUEL Milwaukee, ONE Milwaukee, Hispanic Professionals of Greater Milwaukee, NEWaukee, NAIOP Wisconsin Developing Leaders, Rotaract Club of Milwaukee, United Way LINC (Lead Impact Network Change), Young Nonprofit Professionals Network, National Association of Asian American Professionals, Social X Milwaukee, WGIRLS Milwaukee, Swarmm Events, and Boys and Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee Young Professionals Committee.

The YP groups established the programming following the civil unrest in Milwaukee’s Sherman Park neighborhood in August, realizing the importance of working together to address socioeconomic disparities in the city.

The events are part of YP Week. More information is available at www.ypweek.com.

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Andrew is the editor of BizTimes Milwaukee. He joined BizTimes in 2003, serving as managing editor and real estate reporter for 11 years. A University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate, he is a lifelong resident of the state. He lives in Muskego with his wife, Seng, their son, Zach, and their dog, Hokey. He is an avid sports fan and is a member of the Muskego Athletic Association board of directors.

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