Newaukeean of the Week

Leah Fiasca

GMC Project Director embraces a wide range of things that make Milwaukee great.

By - Aug 12th, 2013 10:55 am
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Leah Fiasca

Leah Fiasca

What makes Milwaukee a good place to live?
Gosh! There are so many things that make Milwaukee such a great place to call home. I particularly like the accessibility of our community’s events, restaurants and cultural institutions. I am constantly amazed that when a great new restaurant opens, I don’t have to wait for months before I can get a reservation; when the Bucks make the playoffs I don’t have to hand over one my limbs in order to get tickets; and when I want to volunteer at a local organization, I am welcomed with open arms.  I also love the energy of this city– so many people giving so much hard work to make it a better place for all of our residents.

How does Milwaukee  compare to other cities you’ve lived in or visited?
I was born and raised in Milwaukee. I lived in Philadelphia for six years during college and graduate school, but moved back to Milwaukee in 2011. (The emergence of Purple Door Ice Cream may have had played a bit role in my decision to return. It’s so delicious!)

There is also a shyness and unassuming nature of Milwaukeeans that, I think, gives Milwaukee a tremendous sense of place. When friends visit me in Milwaukee, they are always enamored by what this city has to offer, the accessibility of it all, and how welcoming everyone is.

How would you rate Milwaukee as a place to work and do business?
I am very lucky that I work at the Greater Milwaukee Committee, an organization comprised of the region’s business and civic leaders, so I get the pleasure of working every day with fantastic role models who have incredibly strong leadership skills. I learn so much from them. Their experience, knowledge, diligence, and enthusiasm are always very humbling.

Was there a point where you decided this was the city you wanted to live in?
I always knew that I would return to Milwaukee one day, but I did not think it would be so soon after college. I am very happy that I made the decision to return. It has been a pleasure to get to know Milwaukee as an adult. That said, I still have just as much fun at the Milwaukee County Zoo as I did when I was six years old!

What is your favorite Milwaukee event?
My favorite events are:

(1)   Urban Island Beach Party – Do we really have to wait another year before those pink flamingos appear again?

(2)   Doors Open Milwaukee –  It is so much fun to go inside many of the buildings that I see during my daily travels throughout the city.

(3)   Art Vs. Craft – This is a great place to find locally sourced holiday gifts for family and friends.

(4)   Whatever the season, there are always great sporting events to watch and participate in. Currently it’s summer, so GO BREWERS!

What is the one thing you’d like to change about Milwaukee?
There are many deeply rooted issues that plague our city, and I am sad that we still don’t have a collectively shared vision for our community. We are on our way but consensus-building, collaboration, and change are hard and take time. I think that initiatives like Milwaukee Succeeds and our most recent GMC initiative, Teachtown MKE, are really strong steps in the right direction. I firmly believe that Milwaukee has a really bright future and hope that I can, in some small way, help Milwaukee get there.

  • Laure Gelis-Diaz

    Laure Gelis-Diaz

    "Coming from Paris, France, I used to walk EVERYWHERE…"

  • Laura Gramann

    Laura Gramann

    "Milwaukee is walkable, which allows for heads to turn up and gaze at a plethora of structures donning beautiful architecture."

  • Alex Lasry

    Alex Lasry

    "Marc, Wes, Jamie and the Bucks are determined to help rejuvenate the city."

  • Maurice Thomas

    Maurice Thomas

    "I believe we can change the life outcomes for students in our community..."

  • Sarah Dollhausen

    I have struggled over the years to stay in Milwaukee. With the line of work I am in (youth and community work, running a nonprofit) there are many times I feel hopeless and overwhelmed with the issues we face; unemployment, lack of opportunities for youth, #1 segregated/institutionalized racism, and wanting to explore other opportunities but at the end of the day, this is my home and Milwaukee needs invested individuals to stay here to work through the issues we face.

    "Milwaukee needs invested individuals to stay here to work through the issues we face."

  • Lizzi Weasler

    Kickstart my heart to Harley Davidson Fest... Seeing all of Milwaukee turn into a sea of leather fringe and bedazzled back pocket jeans warms any fashion girl’s heart.

    "The best bonus of Harley Fest is being sung to sleep by thousands of motorcycles revving their engines throughout the streets of good ol’ Miltown."

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