NEWaukeean of the Week

Mike Massie

"I would love to see Milwaukee take the lead in growing its technology to empower our natural strengths."

By - Apr 4th, 2017 10:38 am
Mike Massie. Photo courtesy of NEWaukee.

Mike Massie. Photo courtesy of NEWaukee.

Where do you work and what makes your role awesome?

Northwestern Mutual in technology. We are all given the flexibility to work in some capacity as an R&D team. If there are things that we feel can better the product we have the freedom to explore them. They’re not all successes but sometimes you can really strike gold.

How long have you lived in Milwaukee and what brought you here?

I was born here and lived here for most my life but did move back from Chicago to be closer to family, friends and a better work/life balance.

What do you love most about Milwaukee?

After living in both New York City and Chicago, it’s the right size to raise a child yet also have all the conveniences of what a bigger city offers without the typical burdens like insufferable traffic.

What is something that is missing from our community that you would love to see implemented?

An ecosystem to help advance tech growth in the city – from strong computer science programs in area universities, a healthy start-up community that helps promote each other and their successes to a strong venture capital presence to promote the growth of great ideas.

What is one word that you would use to describe Milwaukee?


Where do you see Milwaukee in five years?

Lake Michigan and combined Great Lakes are 20% of the world’s fresh water and Wisconsin’s border is 86% fresh water. I really see the story arc of Milwaukee in the transition from an industrial sector city to thriving water research center to the world.

If you could create one thing in Milwaukee, what would it be?

A high-speed rail stop.

What local restaurant is at the top of your list?

Tough call; Odd Duck or Vanguard, in Bay View. I first read about Vanguard in Chicago Magazine and the Chicago restaurateur talent that is pulling up stakes in the windy city and heading north to less traffic, lower taxes and still a quality standard of living. That news made me happy. Our food scene is blowing up.

What is your biggest hope for this city?

We sit as the biggest city in Wisconsin, a state with great natural resources for agriculture to our water initiatives. I would love to see Milwaukee take the lead in growing its technology to empower our natural strengths. As a new father and working for a company that focuses on financial planning, I think a lot about not only having enough money when I retire but will this place be a world left to enjoy when I get there. We have the ability to play a strong part in that story.

What is your favorite Milwaukee tradition?

New Year’s Day Polar Bearing.

What does your ideal Milwaukee weekend look like?

Sailing on Friday with MAST racing, a trail run, a brewery stop, dinner cooked over the grill at home and a trip to the park or Audubon with the family

What neighborhood do you live in and why do you love it?

My wife, little one and I live in the Beerline District. I love it because, I am 5 minutes from the east river path for 5 miles of trail running, indoor rock climbing, kayak/canoeing and 3 breweries. On top of that, I am a 15-minute bike ride to work.

What’s your favorite hidden gem or secret fact about the city?

The Schlitz Audubon in Fox Point. We just discovered it this year and with a 9th-month-old at home, we are excited to participate in the activities they hold to promote a strong relationship with nature early in life.

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