GMC: Julia Taylor stepping down as president

MILWAUKEE – Julia Taylor, president of the Greater Milwaukee Committee (GMC), the largest and most influential civic organization in Wisconsin, announced today to the GMC board of directors her plans to retire by the end of the year.

The announcement by Taylor, who has served as leader of the GMC for almost two decades of major change and achievements, gives the GMC ample time to find and transition to a new leader. She will continue to reside in the Milwaukee area pursuing her love of artistry and painting.

“I have greatly valued my time leading the GMC and being a part of the broader community here in the greater Milwaukee area and throughout the state of Wisconsin,” Taylor said. “Our community has made significant advances on many fronts. While there are challenges that remain, there are also many initiatives and organizations in addition to a new generation of smart and dedicated leaders in place to keep southeast Wisconsin moving forward.”

The GMC is made up of almost 200 of the top CEOs and leaders of major business, industry, financial institutions, law firms, educational institutions in the metropolitan area and is dedicated to improving the civic life and economy of southeastern Wisconsin. GMC Board Chairman Greg Marcus announced today that he would be appointing a special committee to conduct a national search for Taylor’s successor.

“We want to thank Julia for bringing so much positive change and achievement to the GMC over the past two decades,” said Marcus, president and CEO of the Marcus Corporation. “Her announcement gives us ample time to find a successor and to manage a smooth transition in leadership.

“Since taking the reins of the GMC, Julia has helped bring greater diversity to our membership and our board and has involved the GMC much more deeply into the improvement of all parts of Milwaukee,” said Marcus. “We have greater numbers of women and minorities serving in leadership roles and the GMC is having a much greater impact in neighborhoods, education and economic development at the most basic levels.”

Founded in 1948 to help Milwaukee recover from the years of the Great Depression and World War II, the GMC helped launch and complete a number of major civic projects that included the Milwaukee Art Museum on the lakefront, the Milwaukee County Zoo, the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center, the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, and a large number of other “bricks and mortar” projects. Following weeks of racial unrest and the “civil disturbance” of 1967, the GMC began shifting its focus to the social challenges facing Milwaukee and its central city neighborhoods.

Under Taylor’s leadership the GMC won local and national support for its projects, which include efforts to promote and support economic prosperity (Innovation in Milwaukee, Scale Up Milwaukee, and Future Workforce), vibrancy of place (Creative Placemaking, MKE United), and development of innovation and talent (The Commons, Teachtown MKE, Reimagining High Schools).

“The work of the GMC in building a better Greater Milwaukee for all of our citizens is more important than ever,” said Marcus. “We have a legacy of progress and achievement but the larger work of today and tomorrow will require new leadership and energy. Fortunately, Julia will be with us to help with the transition and advise in the years to come.”