How Did You Do That? What does it take for an entrepreneur to go from an idea to a successful startup? Hosts Kathleen Gallagher and Tim Keane talk with Wisconsin entrepreneurs about how - and why - they've succeeded. Kathleen Gallagher is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and the executive director of the Milwaukee Institute. Tim Keane is the director of Golden Angels Investors and an entrepreneur who led his own startup to a profitable acquisition.
How Did You Do That?

How Did You Do That?

From WUWM 89.7 FM - Milwaukee's NPR

What does it take for an entrepreneur to go from an idea to a successful startup? Hosts Kathleen Gallagher and Tim Keane talk with Wisconsin entrepreneurs about how - and why - they've succeeded. Kathleen Gallagher is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and the executive director of the Milwaukee Institute. Tim Keane is the director of Golden Angels Investors and an entrepreneur who led his own startup to a profitable acquisition.

Most Recent Episodes

How Ed Ward Created The World's Largest Celtic Festival in Milwaukee

Ed Ward has experience in the Peace Corps, the military, politics, law and investing, but it's in the not-for-profit world that he made his mark as a successful entrepreneur. In 1981 Ed turned his passion for Irish music into a venture that now requires 4,500 people to run and has 125,000 annual customers. It has been the guiding force in a global movement that he inspired, shepherded, and grew — and it will have a lasting influence on Milwaukee. The venture is called Irish Fest and it's

From Musician To Experiential Marketing: Entrepreneur Gary Renolds

Gary Reynolds started out as a musician, left for the West Coast to try songwriting, then followed his entrepreneurial instincts back to Wisconsin. His idea of connecting emerging bands with big company sponsors got him his first client, Miller Brewing. His idea of using his band support network of 300 representatives on campuses across the country to market tech products got him his second client, Apple Inc. Today, Gary is considered a pioneer in experiential marketing. He sold his company, New

Entrepreneur Sue Marks On How Companies Can Win In The War For Talent

From a very young age, Sue Marks has valued entrepreneurship and a strong work ethic. After her grandparents immigrated from Germany in 1919 with nothing, but her grandfather built a life for them in Milwaukee as the owner of a small printing business. Sue married at 19 and finished college at night, earning a BS in Business Administration from Marquette University. Like her grandfather, she never stopped working. Sue is founder and CEO of Cielo , a fast-growing recruitment process outsourcing

From Health Care To Hospitality: Entrepreneur Kyle Weatherly

Kyle Weatherly took over his mother's compression garment business in 2006, grew it by 30 percent a year and sold it 10 years later — all without a relevant degree. In fact, he started out wanting to be a lawyer. Solaris had five employees when Kyle started and 120 employees when it was acquired by Lohmann & Rauscher International GmbH & Co., a European conglomerate of medical device and product companies. "My thinking at the time was, I'd go to work for my mom's six-person company for

Laurie Benson, Co-Founder of Inacom Information Systems

Laurie Benson was trained as a nurse, but when she recognized in the early 1980s the impending importance of technology to businesses, she co-founded a tech startup. Laurie grew Inacom Information Systems to $80 million of annual revenue and 150 employees before selling the IT systems integrator in 2009 to Core BTS. She has served as a director on seven corporate boards, formed LSB Unlimited to consult with business leaders, and is now executive director of Nurses on Boards Coalition. A common

Entrepreneur Paul Schueller Believes in 'Learning, Not Lamenting'

Paul Schueller was interested in energy and environmental issues as a young boy in Port Washington and was lucky enough to get into that area as a pipeline construction engineer at Wisconsin Electric. He left the utility to form his own consulting firm, then in 1994 founded Franklin Energy , a Port Washington company that operates energy-saving programs for customers of utilities. Franklin does everything from running rebate programs for purchases of energy-saving light bulbs to performing

John Byrnes: The Business of Investing in Businesses

John Byrnes spent decades building companies – his own and others'. After running the private equity group at Marshall & Ilsley bank for 15 years, he managed its spinout into a new private equity firm. Under John's oversight, Mason Wells raised three funds, the last reaching $525 million. New Mason Wells leaders have gone on to raise a fourth, $615 million fund. As he built Mason Wells, John built a very successful track record helping more than 75 portfolio companies grow. John's experience

Whey Protein To The Food Finance Institute: Tera Johnson Talks Growing Food Businesses

A quest to find a use for whey produced as a byproduct of organic cheese making drove Tera Johnson to create Wisconsin Specialty Protein, maker of Tera's Whey nutritional protein powder, which sold in 2012 to Omega Protein for $26.5 million. Now Tera is running the Madison-based Food Finance Institute , a project of the University of Wisconsin – Extension that supports professionals who are growing profitable food, beverage and value-added agriculture businesses. She also hosts the popular

Whey Protein To The Food Finance Institute: Tera Johnson Talks Growing Food Businesses

Chicken Feed, Probiotics and Staying Ahead of the Agri-Tech Curve

After getting his PhD in food microbiology from Iowa State, Tom Rehberger took a research-oriented faculty position in Oklahoma State's animal science department. There he met critical collaborators with whom he discovered that introducing certain friendly bacteria into cows' stomachs kept them from getting a potentially fatal form of nitrate toxicity, known as chocolate blood syndrome. That discovery set Tom on a commercial path and gave him Milwaukee connections because Phar-More Biochemical,

How Jerry Smith's Entrepreneurship Shaped His Career in Commercial Banking

Jerry Smith's entrepreneurial streak helped shape a successful 45-year career in commercial banking. He was founding CEO of First Business Bank and its parent company. Jerry is now chairman of First Business Financial Services, a publicly traded company with a $200 million market cap and $1.8 billion in assets. 1. Trust your instincts and don't quit Despite the fact that he would be paralyzed for 36 years, Jerry's dad never gave up hope that he would one day walk again. In his father's prayer

How Jerry Smith's Entrepreneurship Shaped His Career in Commercial Banking

Back To Top