Created in Milwaukee
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July 18 - 21, 2019
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September 6 - November 3, 2019
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September 17 - October 27, 2019
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Created in Milwaukee



As a cultural pillar of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Repertory Theater is uniquely positioned to serve as a catalyst of creativity in the city, an attractor and retainer of talent, and supporter of Milwaukee’s brand as a hub of innovation and creativity. Our 2015 Strategic Plan motivated The Rep to embark on our Created in Milwaukee Capital Campaign with a $10 million goal to support the strategic priorities.

$4.5 million to fortify our building’s foundation, create a new production of A Christmas Carol, and launch new play development and community engagement programs.

$5.5 million in endowment funds to further support these programs and the ongoing artistic excellence of The Rep.

Generous corporate, foundation, and individual donors made it possible for us to meet and exceed our $10 million goal and close out the campaign as of December 31, 2017.

Please watch the video below to learn more about the campaign and what it supports.





Campaign Co-Chairs

Catherine Robinson and Judy Hansen

Major Gift Division Co-Chairs
Wendy Blumenthal and Robert Manegold

Patsy Aster
Jane Chernof
Sue Lueger
Donna Meyer
Dwight Morgan
Stacy Williams

Corporate Gift Division Co-Chairs
Greg Oberland and Buddy Robinson

Bladen Burns
Paul Eberle
Chad Neumann
Ed Seaberg
Kent Velde
Nic Wahl

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An Opportunity to Strengthen Milwaukee

Our new mission is a direct reflection of our belief that The Rep can and should play a leadership role in strengthening our community and further defining Milwaukee as a national center for creativity and innovation.

Our Created in Milwaukee campaign is comprised of four strategic initiatives, all essential to securing the longevity of The Rep and our continual impact within Milwaukee.

Fortify the foundation of the Patty and Jay Baker Theater Complex and complete essential structural repairs.

Beginning in 2009, the wood pilings that supported our building began to rot, threatening the very foundation of Milwaukee Rep. In 2014, the rotted portions were replaced with metal poles to fortify the pilings, and an irrigation system was constructed to ensure the remaining wood pilings are not susceptible to future rot. 

Create a new production of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, a 40+ year Rep Tradition.

With the aging of our previous production, it was time to develop a new adaptation of A Christmas Carol, complete with a new set and new costumes. After nearly three years of planning and 10,000+ manhours, we launched a new version in 2016. Artistic Director Mark Clements crafted a stunning new adaptation that gets at the heart of the original novella and incorporates much more audience participation. New costumes incorporated the latest LED technologies and the new turn-table set with movable walls is now the most technically-advanced set ever created for a Rep production. 

Launch a new play development program committed to producing 20 new plays in five years.

We have a responsibility to stand at the forefront of current cultural conversations, keeping theater vibrant in the present and alive for the future. As such, we are committed to commissioning and producing new works within the John (Jack) D. Lewis New Play Development program. Our goal is to produce no less than four new works each year across our performance spaces. Plays with national appeal combined with local resonance speak particularly to today’s audiences, reinforcing the brand of Milwaukee and The Rep as cultural leaders in creativity. Our goal is to bring the best of Milwaukee to the world, and the best of the world to Milwaukee.

Create and launch a robust community engagement initiative, Mpact.

This initiative employs the skills and resources of Milwaukee Rep to create positive change in the Greater Milwaukee community. By utilizing the tremendous creative assets of the company, we ask our community to think about what they want the future to look like, and then assist them in developing the skills and relationships necessary to make that future a reality. All programming focuses on strengthening Milwaukee, diversity & inclusion, and literacy & social-emotional learning. 

Thanks to large initial investments from the community, we have already completed the first two initiatives and raised $7 million toward our goal. Our efforts are now focused on raising the remaining $3 million to sustain our new play development program and Mpact.



As a catalyst of positive change, Milwaukee Rep continues to prove that regardless of cultural biases, theater has the power to overcome barriers and unite a community.

Collectively, the Herzfeld Foundation, Camille and David Kundert, and the Lubar Family provided a $1.5 million Challenge Fund to motivate us and our donors to realize our goal to raise the remaining $1.5 million and complete our Created in Milwaukee capital campaign by December 31, 2017. Thanks to their support and the support of many others we were able to meet the challenge by December 31 and close out the campaign a full 18 months ahead of schedule.




Outcomes of the Created in Milwaukee Capital Campaign



Capital Campaign Planned Giving Donors

George B. Affeldt, Jr.
Bob Balderson
Carol and John Bannen
Katherine Banzhaf
Vicki and Mark Benskin
Ralph Bielenberg
Melita Biese
Jane and Stephen Chernof
Judi and Chris Collins
Diane Dalton
Don Ellingsen
Susan and Gee Esslinger
Janet and David Fleck
Delphine Gurzynski
Susan and Richard Hackl
Judy Hansen
Leland Hansen
Edward Hashek and John Jors
Diane and Richard Kane
Margaret Knitter
Christine Krause
Mary and James Lavelle
Susan and Robert Lueger
Sally and James Mergener
Donna and Tony Meyer
Patricia and David Rierson
Brenda Skelton and Jim Bendsten
Aileen Smith
Judy Van Till
Paul Vandeveld
Marcia and W. Kent Velde

Created in Milwaukee Capital Campaign Donors

$1,000,000 +
David and Camille Kundert
Phoebe R. and John D. Lewis Foundation

$500,000 – $999,999
Judy Hansen
Richard and Ethel Herzfeld Foundation
David and Julia Uihlein Charitable Foundation

$250,000 – $499,999
Bladen and Julia Burns
Four-Four Foundation
Lubar Family Foundation
Greg and Rhonda Oberland
United Performing Arts Fund
Windhover Foundation

$100,000 – $249,999
The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation
James E and Mary K Braza
Tony and Andrea Bryant
Peter Emch
Johnson Controls, Inc.
Billie and Mike Kubly
Vince and Jan Martin
Northwestern Mutual
Tom and Susan Quadracci
Buddy and Catherine Robinson
Bert L. & Patricia S. Steigleder Charitable Trust
We Energies

$50,000 – $99,999
Donna and Donald Baumgartner
Melanie and Steve Booth
Croen Foundation, Inc.
Mae E. Demmer Charitable Trust
Lloyd Gerlach
In Memory of Mary Ann Gerlach
Judith A. Keyes Family Fund
Connie and John Kordsmeier
Estate of Lorraine Lange
Marcus Corporation Foundation
John and Linda Mellowes
Donna and Tony Meyer
Jim and Gwen Plunkett
Ed Seaberg and Patrick Smith
Howard and Mernie Williams

$25,000 – $49,999
Wendy and Warren Blumenthal
Mary Lynn and Randal J. Brotherhood
Elaine Burke
Russell and Susan Darrow
Greater Milwaukee Foundation
Susan and Howard Hopwood Fund
Carla H. Hay
Kelben Foundation
Robert and Susan Lueger
Dwight and Marleen Morgan
Patti and Jack McKeithan
David A. Paris, D.D.S.
James Phillips
Harry and Mary Beth Van Groll
Stacy & Blair Williams

$10,000 – $24,999
Gary and Connie Bakker
Matt Bartel
Mark and Victoria Benskin
Jane and Stephen Chernof
Flesch Family Fund
Patrick D. Gallagher
Tameica and John Greene
Rich Grunke and Bill Grasch
John Halechko and Marc Colletti
Peter and Linda Hotz
Suzanne and Michael Hupy
Stephen and Roberta Isaacson
Jewish Community Foundation
Abigail and David Nash Donor Advised Fund
Don Fraker and Maja Jurisic
Marina and Frank Krejci
Richard and Roberta London
Wayne and Kristine Lueders
Vivian Moller
Bob and Jan Montgomery
Drs. Mark and Jennifer Niedfeldt
Clare M. Peters Charitable Trust
Robert W. Baird & Co.
Meredith and Thomas Scrivner
In Memory of Susan Robertson
Karen and Richard Rodgers
Micky and Ronald Sadoff
Jay and Anne Schamberg
Kent and Marcia Velde
Sally and Nic Wahl
Ziegler Family Foundation