Business Alliance names Emerging Leaders

By Hannah Weikel - Freeman Staff

Feb. 23, 2018

WAUKESHA — The Waukesha County Business Alliance has named six Emerging Leaders of Waukesha County award winners — young professionals who have excelled in their careers and community.

The awards were nomination- based, and an independent panel of judges reviewed all nominees based on community service, achievement of professional goals, a team mindset, continual self-improvement, exemplifying leadership traits and seeking ways to advance, according to a press release.

“These six Emerging Leaders are dedicated individuals who have taken their personal and professional growth to heart,” said Suzanne Kelley, president and CEO of the Waukesha County Business Alliance. “They represent a bright future for Waukesha County and demonstrate what companies can achieve by nurturing and supporting younger professionals.”

Winners will received their awards at a luncheon on April 25 at Davians in Menomonee Falls. Registration for the event is available on the Alliance’s website www.waukesha.org.

The winners:

John Dunn, vice president of technical product management, GE Digital/GE Healthcare.

John Dunn
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Dunn has a proven past of driving the technology strategy and change management for buying, fulfilling, delivering and installing equipment for customers. Dunn started working at GE as an engineering co-op for GE Appliances, and is considered an inspirational thought leader on how to drive productivity within the company’s supply chain. He also serves as co-chair of IT United — a United Way profession- specific group — and is on the board of United Way of Greater Milwaukee and Waukesha County.

Beth Lohmann, employment and community services director, Easterseals Southeast Wisconsin.

Beth Lohmann
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Lohmann is a dynamic, goal-oriented professional with demonstrated skills in vocational and community rehabilitation. Lohmann has nearly 20 years of experience working with individuals with disabilities and mental illness and, while at Easterseals, has been an integral part of the growth of integrated programming for work and community programs. Since Lohmann joined Easterseals, employment programs have grown by nearly $1 million, job placements in community-based jobs have increased from 10 in 2011 to 127 in 2017 and she has contributed to more than $250,000 in grant funding. Lohmann is the past president of the Wisconsin Association for Supporting Employment First and continues as the chair on the training/conference committee She also leads the Waukesha Independence Network that focuses on increasing employment for people with disabilities in Waukesha County and educating Waukesha businesses.

Ryan O’Toole, director of commercial interiors and business development, Hunzinger Construction.

Ryan O’Toole
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O’Toole has worked at Hunzinger for 16 years and over the past five he was transitioned into a leadership role with the company’s Construction/Tenant Improvement Division, where he heads and supervises all of Hunzinger’s specialized commercial interior projects that are customer- service driven. The company has also developed a community outreach program, which O’Toole has embraced by volunteering for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Milwaukee and Waukesha and the Make-AWish Foundation of Wisconsin, serving on the Association of General Contractor’s Construction Leadership Council and championing Hunzinger’s Troop Care Shipment Program.

Ryan Rethwisch, engineer manager, EmbedTek LLC.

Ryan Rethwisch
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Rethwisch is an engineering leader in the field of embedded electronics and has spent his career leading development teams that create innovative embedded systems. At EmbedTek, Rethwisch has helped grow the engineering department from two people and $3 million in revenue to 20 people and $21 million in revenue. He also mentors youth interested in engineering and robotics fields through Marquette University and local middle and high schools, Boy and Girl Scouts and more.

Steve Wurster, senior vice president and chief operating officer, Ruekert & Mielke Inc.

Steve Wurster
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Since starting with Ruekert & Mielke in 1999, Wurster earned the title of COO at 38 years old. His dedication and leadership have contributed to team-building and employee development and assisting staff.

Cindy Simons, operations manager, WOW Workforce Development Inc.

Cindy Simons
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Simons was born in Mexico and raised in Texas where she gained her permanent residency status at 21. After moving to Wisconsin she started working in the workforce system and has for 10 years. As the operations manager for Waukesha-Ozaukee-Washington Workforce Development, she assists the president with oversight of the organization’s programs and services to safeguard that governmental agencies, community organizations, partners, employers and clients have a positive experience. She also manages the Business Services Unit to make sure local businesses have access to necessary workforce development needs.

Information about the award winners was submitted by the Waukesha County Business Alliance.