Jay Mason is a seasoned entrepreneur with over 30 years of starting and growing nearly a dozen highly successful businesses, many in the health technology sector. As a strategist, he regularly advises other high growth enterprises nationally as well as serves on numerous for profit and non-profit boards. Jay is an outspoken advocate and tireless evangelist for creating and supporting a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem in Wisconsin.
Larry Waters provides leadership and guidance to organizations by serving as a consultant. He was previously the Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship for the Washington D.C. based Opportunity Funding Corporation. Prior to his retirement, Waters held leadership positions throughout the country in communications, sales, marketing and corporate affairs during a career that spanned thirty-four years with MillerCoors. He has also served as a member of numerous local and national civic and business related organizations, boards and committees.
Waters earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the University of Michigan in Ann
Dr. Tom Keppeler
Dr. Tom Keppeler grew up in the Milwaukee area and is executive director of PRISM Economic Development Corporation in Milwaukee. Prior to his current role, Tom has worked in a variety of leadership roles of various organizations involved in education, community development and Christian ministry both locally and internationally. He and his wife, Mary, live in the Sherman Park neighborhood of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He is fluent in Romanian, German and English and in his spare time enjoys downhill skiing, reading and cycling.
Michael Jahr is vice president of outreach and special projects at the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute. Prior to joining WPRI, he served as communications director at The Kern Family Foundation. From 2005-2012, he was vice president for communications at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a Michigan-based think tank. Jahr spent 10 years as a communications director and press secretary on Capitol Hill. Jahr’s work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Weekly Standard, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Detroit News and many other outlets.
Michael is a native of Milwaukee and obtained undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater. Over the last 5 years, Michael has dedicated his life to business and education. Aside from this professional consulting business, Michael has partnered with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, the University of Wisconsin –Whitewater and is a member of the Business administration and Entrepreneurship facility at Milwaukee Area Technical College.
Ariam earned her BA degree in Marketing and Sales from the UW-Milwaukee Lubar School of Business. She has always remained connected to her communities and has been steadfast in her mission to better Milwaukee through her direct engagement with a number of underserved communities. Ariam is also a graduate of the Marquette University's prestigious Associates in Commercial Real Estate <ACRE> program. Ms. Kesete continues to make her mark in underserved Milwaukee communities as an established real estate developer. She is president and founder of AK Development, an organization dedicated to serving underserved and under-represented neighborhoods in Milwaukee’s inner city.
Chad Johnson, a native of Milwaukee, is an entrepreneur and travels across North America as a training consultant under Chad Johnson, LLC facilitating leadership development courses for clients such as MillerCoors, Johnson Controls and Fiserv. He is also a partner in MKEing Coffee, a new coffee roasting company and brand in Milwaukee, WI.
Joelynett is a small business owner and has helped to launch several businesses and organizations over the past 10 years. Through her personal process, Joelynett has developed a passion to help others successfully launch a new business while managing their everyday lives. Her powerful intuition, blended with her ability to shift perspective allows others to successfully craft and bring ideas to light. Joelynett’s ability to think outside of the box and bring a fresh perspective, allows others to reach their greatest potential. Joelynett believes when we help entrepreneurs, we help fuel community revitalization. Her passion for entrepreneurship is one that is evident in every presentation, workshop, and mentoring experience
Greg Webb has a history of thinking big and his corporate and entrepreneurial career provided him with a view that few in business have…that of sitting in important seats on both sides of the negotiation table. He brings years of experience in creating and building companies, negotiating and closing complex deals, and leading sales organizations and cross-functional teams.