DiscoverMilwaukee2017 - page 22

Germans were among the city’s first
immigrants, and they soon dominated the
city. By 1850, one-third of the city’s
population was German and by the early
1900s, the city was referred to as the
“German Athens of America.” The city’s
South Side Polish population was the
second largest ethnic group. Milwaukee’s
first African-American church dates back
to 1869, but the city’s African-American
community did not start growing rapidly
until after World War I. The first Hispanics
arrived in the early 1920s, when local
tanneries recruited men from Mexican
Milwaukee is a diverse community that has
been an ethnic melting pot since its
founding. It is home to a large number of
African Americans
are the
largest minority group, representing
approximately 15 percent of the region’s
population. The
population is the fastest growing and
currently represents 11 percent of the
population. Milwaukee is also welcoming
to the
The Economy
Milwaukee has been a center of commerce
since the Potawatomi Indians first settled
along the shores of the Menomonee River
and Lake Michigan hundreds of years ago.
It was a leading Great Lakes port in the
1800s, the “Beer Capital of the World” and
the “Toolbox of America” in the 1900s,
and is now a global center for advanced
manufacturing, electronic commerce,
financial services, food and beverage
producers, printing, and green
technologies. The region’s research
facilities and manufacturing plants are
paving the way for new medical
technologies, battery-powered cars and
alternative power solutions that will define
the 21st Century. It is home to several
global technology companies, including
Rockwell Automation, GE Healthcare,
Astronautics Corporation of America,
Johnson Controls, Modine Manufacturing,
SC Johnson
Milwaukee also is home to several leaders
in the financial and service industries,
Northwestern Mutual,
Kohl’s Corp.
The city is an excellent place to live from
an employee’s perspective as well. Per
capita, it has the second-highest
concentration of best companies to work
for, according to the Great Places to Work
Institute. For more information, please see
Open for Business
, which starts on page
The Future
With billions of dollars being invested in
the region’s entertainment, housing, retail,
office space and transportation
infrastructure, the Milwaukee Region is
poised for its greatest growth in more than
a generation. A new basketball arena and
entertainment district, condos and
apartments, and office buildings are
reshaping the skyline. Milwaukee’s “can-
do” mentality, ideal location, educated
workforce and forward-facing economy
have positioned the region for growth.
One of the more significant challenges when moving to a new community is developing
friendships – even in a very friendly city such as Milwaukee. Fortunately there are ways
to engage in the community and meet the people who will become your friends.
Following are some suggestions:
1. If you have children,
get active at their schools and enroll them in recreational
programs. There’s no question that having children makes it easier to meet people.
Make sure you acquaint yourselves with the parents of your children’s friends. Enroll
your children in recreation and sports programs and meet those parents as well.
2. Another place to meet people is at your place of worship.
Volunteer to be an usher, a
greeter or a reader. Or, you can get involved with a committee or event.
3. Find people with common interests at work.
Corporate wellness committees often
have user groups that promote certain types of activities – such as biking, jogging,
hiking, etc. These groups offer the opportunity to get to know like-minded people
outside of a work setting.
4. Volunteer.
Organizations are always looking for help.
is an
excellent resource for finding an opportunity that interests you.
5. Join a neighborhood group.
Many communities, especially in the city of Milwaukee,
have a community group that is actively involved with the local neighborhood. These
present ideal opportunities to meet your neighbors and find out what is going on.
6. Get involved in professional organizations.
Almost every profession has a trade
organization with a local chapter. And for young adults there is FUEL Milwaukee (
), a 7,000-member organization that is focused on engaging young
people in the community.
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