Duo seeks to expand community of support for professional women at new center in De Pere.
DE PERE, Wis. — Bridget O’Connor, principal and founder of O’Connor Connective in De Pere, Wisconsin, and Vicki Updike, founder of New Sage Strategies in Appleton, Wisconsin, and De Pere, have announced their business partnership to further advance the mission of The Connective: A Place for Women in Business.
Together, Updike and O’Connor will oversee the vision and programming of The Connective’s women-centric center located at 320 Main Ave. in De Pere. The professional office building features a co-working environment and private office suites with access to other women professionals and education by a proven network of educators, coaches, corporate leaders and professional service providers.
“This collaboration is another way we can bring professional development to women in business through education, encouragement and inspiration,” said Updike, who brings with her over 25 years of executive experience. “I’m thrilled to be a part of this and am thrilled with the response we are getting as we launch this effort.”
Prior to consulting, Updike held president and CMO positions at Silver Star Brands (formerly known as Miles Kimball Company) and was an operating executive with Bergstrom Automotive. She serves as the co-chair of the New North – the 18-county economic development organization in Northeast Wisconsin – and is passionate about helping create strong, effective leaders, especially women leaders. This passion aligns with everything The Connective seeks to do.
“As women, we often put our own professional development on the back burner,” said O’Connor, a marketing communication strategist with over 25 years of experience in helping organizations tell their unique stories. “Vicki and I want to help build a community where women thrive in their professions and life. The Connective is located in downtown De Pere, a growing business community already made up of over 70 women business owners. We welcome anyone from the New North region to join us. We want to further engage and expand on this empowered demographic.”
“One of our goals with The Connective is to ensure that emerging women leaders and entrepreneurs in our region have access to resources, educational opportunities and mentors who have ‘been there, done that,’” Updike said.
The Connective will offer formal and informal educational opportunities, networking and programs to its members and preferred service providers.
The Connective seeks to build a membership base of women in 2019 and launch programming this March. Membership allows for women to enjoy co-working space, events, workshops, and professional service discounts from The Connective’s list of preferred service providers—a vetted group of consultants and companies that offer what is needed to advance careers and grow businesses such as coaching services, HR, IT, marketing and financial planning.
Updike and O’Connor seek to position The Connective as a go-to place for men and women related to issues of recruitment and retention of talent in all organizations as well as business growth strategies for family and women-owned businesses.
“It takes men and women alike to advance our business community,” O’Connor said. “We invite all to join us in this effort.”
About The Connective: A Place for Women in Business
The Connective was established in 2018 as a women-centric co-working community with access to education by a proven network of educators, coaches, corporate leaders and professional service providers. The center seeks to be the go-to community of support for professional women leaders to further enhance the impact of executives and small business owners in today’s ever-evolving business environment. The Connective is located at 320 Main Ave. in De Pere, Wisconsin. To learn more about becoming a member or professional service provider of The Connective, visit theconnectivewi.com.