Executive Director

Executive Director

Waukesha County Center for Growth

The Waukesha County Center for Growth, Inc., a countywide economic development organization uniquely situated along the thriving corridor between Milwaukee and Madison, Wisconsin, is seeking an experienced, growth-oriented leader to serve as its Executive Director.

A nonprofit created in 2016, the Center for Growth serves as the lead economic development organization for Waukesha County.  Waukesha County is part of the Milwaukee Metropolitan area and southeast Wisconsin region, otherwise known as the Milwaukee 7 (M7) region.  Its strategic location is just 20 minutes west of downtown Milwaukee and less than an hour east of Madison.  Waukesha County is home to the corporate headquarters of name brand companies like Milwaukee Tool, Generac, and Kohl’s. The county is also a hub for advanced manufacturing, with a high concentration of companies in the medical device, food and beverage, and power and controls sectors.

The Executive Director is charged with achieving the vision and objectives of the organization, including strategies for business attraction, retention and expansion, and talent pipeline development.

This position is accountable for the overall performance and growth of the organization, including budgeting, strategic development, and program/project implementation.  The Executive Director works closely with the Waukesha County Business Alliance and other strategic partners for the implementation of organizational responsibilities, including the University of Wisconsin Small Business Development Center and the Waukesha County Business Alliance.

Waukesha County Center for Growth offers a competitive salary and benefits based upon experience. Application submissions will be confidential. Please submit letter of interest, resume and salary history to alliance@waukesha.org by June 30, 2023.


Primary Responsibilities:

  • Plan and coordinate economic development and business outreach activities with a focus on business retention, expansion, and attraction.
  • Serve as a central point of contact and information resource for businesses seeking financial, site selection and other assistance.
  • Foster relationships with municipal partners and key stakeholders to increase awareness, support, and use of WCCG services.
  • Lead the development and execution of the Waukesha County Business Growth Strategy.
  • Increase investment in and deployment of the GROW Fund in support of economic development projects and financial sustainability of the WCCG.
  • Administer and manage the day-to-day operations of the organization, supervise any designated staff, and manage WCCG Board activities.


Other Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Implement proactive business outreach strategies, including a countywide Business Retention & Expansion (BRE) Program, to identify the needs of businesses seeking to expand in Waukesha County.
  • Coordinate work of the Waukesha County Outreach Specialist with the University of Wisconsin Small Business Development Center and oversee contracted services.
  • Effectively collaborate with economic and community development professionals in Waukesha County, as well as state and regional economic development groups such as the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and the Milwaukee 7.
  • Work closely with the Milwaukee Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) on their administration of the GROW Fund, including the existing loan portfolio and the pipeline of potential loan prospects.
  • Build strong relationships with board members, industry experts, business leaders, public officials, the real estate community, and other stakeholders.
  • Develop, implement, and sustain economic development marketing initiatives, including ongoing updates to the WCCG website and creation of collateral to promote initiatives and programs.
  • Identify and deploy effective talent pipeline development and recruitment initiatives to support business needs in coordination with Waukesha-Ozaukee-Washington Counties Workforce Development Board and the Waukesha County Business Alliance.
  • Serve as liaison to the Alliance’s Economic Development Policy Committee.
  • Seek out and coordinate preparation of applications for federal and state assistance grants related to economic development.
  • Identify and facilitate access to financial tools for business needs.
  • Collaborate with the Waukesha County Business Alliance President to define shared resource requirements and expectations and coordinate in staff utilization.


Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:

  • High degree of knowledge and significant skills in economic development practices including business retention, expansion, attraction, financing, and marketing.
  • Thorough knowledge of business and economics.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with board members, associates, business leaders, public officials, and other stakeholders.
  • Ability to plan, organize and effectively present ideas, concepts, and recommendations.
  • Ability to develop, interpret and apply policies and procedures; and federal, state, and local laws, rules, and regulations.
  • Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing.
  • Thorough knowledge of administrative, managerial, and supervisory principles and practices, including budgeting, planning, program evaluation and employee supervision.
  • Ability to appropriately deal with confidential information.
  • Ability to prepare and negotiate agreements.
  • Ability to anticipate and address challenges proactively.
  • Ability to multi-task and meet adjusting deadlines.
  • Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions.
  • Ability to read, analyze and interpret common technical journals, financial reports, and legal documents.
  • Administrative skills in the areas of researching, organizing information and broad computer skills.


Education and/or Experience:

A bachelor’s degree in economic development, economics, business administration, urban planning, public administration, real estate, or related field; and at least five (5) years of experience.  Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) designation preferred, but not required.


To Apply:

Waukesha County Center for Growth offers a competitive salary and benefits based upon experience. Application submissions will be confidential. Please submit letter of interest, resume and salary history to alliance@waukesha.org by June 30, 2023.

Have additional questions about the position? Contact our team to learn more!