Wausau is a brand unto itself. Internationally recognized! Think of the titans of industry that heralded the Wausau moniker: Wausau Papers, Wausau Insurance, Wausau Homes, Wausau Metal, Wausau Tile, Wausau Chemical, Wausau Window and Wall, Wausau Coated, and let’s not forget Wausau Mine! Just to mention a few. We’re much more than a punchline in an insurance commercial.

With the current city branding initiative, we now have a brand recognition only bested by Milwaukee and Green Bay; and if not for the Packers, Green Bay has nothing on Wausau. The image of the city skyline highlighting the Dudley center is more than just a logo, it rings in consumers’ minds images of a great place to live and work.

Our challenge is to harness the momentum of our predecessors and create a clear, concise mental picture of the Wausau we want to live in for generations to come. Future knowledge and technology based jobs will not hold workers to physical locations. Future jobs will come to places people want to live, we need to ask, why not Wausau?

The next generation of 21st Century visionaries, leaders, communicators and operators are ready to take the baton in a technology filled world we might not recognize in 10 years much less 30. The numbers of individuals stepping up to challenge for the city council or mayor is indicative of a city open to new blood in city hall.

Every era has had its champions. Wausau is a paragon of small city achievement. Let’s hold on to our past but let’s not let our past hold on to us and prevent us from embracing the grind that is 21st Century city management. I have a vision to help a new administration harness our momentum into the 21st Century.

Voting is easy, but gathering the data takes a little effort. I encourage everyone to do your duties in both research and analysis by reading the various candidate websites and letters to editors readily available in the local papers. Feel empowered to make contact with those you feel haven’t clearly articulated issues to your satisfaction and then go out and vote with confidence on April 3rd, 2018