Hundreds of people are set to attend the 2019 Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference in Milwaukee. Here are 10 reasons to join them Tuesday and Wednesday at the Milwaukee Brewing Co.’s Venue42 for one of the Midwest’s premier events for entrepreneurs.

Register through 5 p.m. Friday at Or register in person Tuesday and Wednesday at Venue42, 1128 N. 9th St., Milwaukee, which is just a long three-point shot from the Fiserv Forum. Plenty of parking is within a block. Why attend?

  1. You’ll hear from topical speakers: Jeff Rusinow will talk Tuesday about his nearly two decades as an angel investor in Wisconsin, beginning with Silicon Prairie in 2000. Ten thousand decks, 55 deals and eight exits later, he’ll share the good, bad and provocative. Tech designer John Zeratsky practically wrote the book on the Google Design Sprint process. In fact, he did write the book! He’ll speak Wednesday on how ‘treps can move quickly and successfully. Also, you’ll hear Tuesday from Sue Marks, winner of the Ken Hendricks Memorial “Seize the Day” award. She is a serial entrepreneur who now leads Brookfield-based Cielo, which does business around the world.
  2. You’ll watch the “Diligent Baker’s Dozen” finalists in the 16th annual Governor’s Business Plan Contest sweat it out: The pressure is on! Our judges will decide who takes home the top prizes in the 2019 BPC after 13 super-finalists give short pitches between 3:05 and 5:30 p.m. Tuesday. We’ll announce the winners over lunch Wednesday.
  3. You’ll be a part of celebrating Milwaukee’s renaissance: With its lakefront development and projects such as the Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee has changed its skyline –and its attitude about startups. Several panel discussions at the conference will feature how young companies are remaking the Cream City’s business landscape.
  4. A featured panel will tackle workforce diversity and inclusion: A plenary panel Tuesday afternoon will drill down into the nitty-gritty of D+I for companies large and small. Should those companies care? Why? What works? Our panelists will approach the topic from fresh perspectives.
  5. You’ll learn from successful entrepreneurs: The panels and seminars will include the likes of Cindy Poiesz, Evolve Brands; Ben Juarez, Cream City Coders; Kwadwo Owusu-Ofori, Satori Food Project; Jim McCabe, MKE Brewing Co.; Kelly Fitzsimmons, Custom Reality Services; Steve Catlin, ParqEx; Carol Vance, Alinea Engage; Chris Widmayer, Penrod; Brian Beeghly, Informed360; Jackie Hermes and Jenny Weeden, Accelity Marketing; Spencer X Smith, AmpliPhi; Tina Chang, SysLogic; Cynthia LaConte, Dohmen; Kathy Hust, Scanalytics; Kyle Weatherly, Frontdesk; Justin Nicols, Sift Healthcare; Matt Cordio, Startup Milwaukee and Skills Pipeline; Abby Taubner, gener8tor; Chandra Miller-Fienen, StartingBlock; Peter Romenesko, Titletown Tech; Rachel Neill, Carex Consulting; Jeremy Fojut, NEWaukee; Mae Haggerty, ConfIdence; and Justin Beck, PerBlue.

  6. You might bump into a seasoned investor: Investors who will take part in panel discussions include: Craig Schedler, NM Future Ventures (Northwestern Mutual); Chris Eckstrom, Rock River Capital Partners; Tim Keane, Golden Angels Investors; Dana Guthrie, Alchemy Angel Investors; Jed White, TASC Ventures; Brian Kaas, CMFG Ventures; Brad Baum, Lightbank; Ron Watson, Lewis & Clark Ventures and Trey Hart, 50 South Capital. Many others will attend and take part in investor-focused meetings.
  7. You can tour the Wisconsin Innovation Showcase in our exhibit areas: About three-dozen companies, including many Business Plan Contest finalists, will be featured in an exhibit space that serves as a crossroads between major program venues. A dedicated networking session will also take place in this space following the lunch on Tuesday. Grab a coffee, a cookie – and make some connections!
  8. Discounts are available for military veterans and students. We are offering a $60 rate for returning U.S. military veterans who would like to learn more about starting and running a business. Students get the $60 rate, too.
  9. You won’t leave hungry: Two luncheons, a reception and two breakfasts are included in your registration fee. It’s hard to go wrong on that alone!
  10. You’ll be a part of a major networking event: Whether it’s the luncheons, the reception, the panels or lobby conversations, you’ll meet hundreds of people who are building Wisconsin’s entrepreneurial economy. Join them!

Register or learn more by calling 608-442-7557 or visiting