Driving The Debate Downtown

I’m happy to announce the formation of the Downtown Advisory Committee — the group of business and property owners and residents who will be front and center in the debate over our city center in coming years.

The goal of the committee: To advise the South Milwaukee City Council and Plan Commission on downtown issues big and small, and play a key role in the development of a downtown plan that we’ll be working on as part of our comprehensive planning update.

It’s a big job, and an important one. I know this group will deliver, bringing passion, energy, enthusiasm and experience — along with some fresh voices — to the table. I can’t wait to get started!

It is a 10-member committee. Voting members are:

  • Jay Benkowski: Owner of Benkowski Properties, which owns and manages a number of downtown and area residential properties. He is based out of the downtown South Milwaukee Depot.
  • Brett Breisemeister: Owner of Breismeister Realty & Appraisal and member of the Plan Commission.
  • Kristin Drenzek: Owner of Drenzek Chiropractic.
  • Natalie Gajewski: Owner of The Revolution Hair Studio, Natalie is serving as one of the resident members of the committee.
  • Chris Haslam: South Milwaukee resident and Caterpillar employee with education in civil and structural engineering.
  • Timothy King: South Milwaukee resident with significant experience in real estate development and community revitalization as a developer, builder, operator, consultant, advisor and executive.
  • Nicole Maxey: Owner of MKE City Sippers.
  • Donn Powers: Owner of Donn Powers Jeweler.
  • Rachel Sorce: South Milwaukee resident and executive director of the South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center.

The non-voting city council liaison will be Ald. Frank Van Dusen III.

I expect this group will first meet in February, coinciding with the hiring of a new economic development coordinator for the city. (We had strong interest in this position and are starting interviews in coming days.)

I want to thank everyone who applied to be on this committee. Interest was high, and we had some great candidates, making for some difficult choices. I see that as a really good sign for what we’re doing here.

I hope that those not chosen — and everyone reading this — joins the conversation. There will be plenty of opportunities to have your voices heard when it comes to revitalizing our downtown. Be heard.

4 Comments

Filed under Community, Downtown, South Milwaukee

4 responses to “Driving The Debate Downtown

  1. Jenny

    Looking forward to the improvements in our great city!

  2. Good luck, everyone! I hope to see some great ideas from you all in the future. Thank you for serving.

  3. RocketMom

    Good, open minded, young(er) professionals chosen for this committee. Thank you everyone for serving. It’s time for the next generation to take the reins.

  4. Dee Andrew

    Enhancing the downtown with great Christmas decorations to replace the old tired ones were a welcome addition. Keep up thegood work!

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