Vote Today; Key Races Will Be Decided
A breakdown of everything on Milwaukee ballots.
Today — Tuesday, April 3rd — is the spring, non-partisan election in Wisconsin. The race getting the most attention has been the important Wisconsin Supreme Court seat, but a statewide referendum on whether to eliminate the position of State Treasurer is also on the ballot. Milwaukeeans may also find a race for the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors on their ballot, the entire board is up for re-election, but only some seats are contested.
Polls close at 8 p.m. Find your polling place and see a sample ballot at My Vote Wisconsin.
Below you’ll find basic information provided by the candidates themselves and a link to their website and Facebook page. And if you click on their name you’ll be brought to any stories written about the candidate. Biographies are included from the candidate’s campaign literature. Candidates running unopposed are not listed.
State Supreme Court
I’ve spent more than twenty years in our Wisconsin court rooms fighting to ensure justice for the people of our state. Over the past two decades, I’ve gained the experience we need, right now and in this moment, to protect the values we share. I know the challenges and the problems Wisconsin families face. I have spent my career, first as a prosecutor, and now as a judge, working to make our community safer.
I’ve overseen both civil and criminal courts—making tough decisions to send violent criminals away, and rendered compassionate verdicts to give people a second chance.
In our courts, I see the challenges our neighbors face every day: I see moms like me working two jobs, but still not able to make ends meet. I see families losing their homes when a family member gets sick and the medical bills stack up. I see victims of violent crime, especially in our poorest neighborhoods, struggling to find a way as guns, drugs, and gangs devastate their community. And I see neighbors trying to get their lives back on track, but stuck in a criminal justice system that needs reform.
Judges are challenged every single day: to weigh the facts, examine the evidence and deliver a decision. And while there is so much at stake here in Wisconsin, inexperience is not an option if we want to protect our values at the highest level.
I am prepared to fight and represent our values on day one. I’m excited to be on this journey, and look forward to speaking with you soon.
Sauk County Circuit Court Judge Michael Screnock was born and raised in Wisconsin.
Having spent his earliest years in Marquette County, where his father served as district attorney, the family moved to his mother’s hometown of Baraboo in Sauk County when he was five years old. After graduating from Baraboo High School, Judge Screnock chose to attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he was an active member of the UW Marching Band tuba section. He met his wife, Karen from Brookfield, Wisconsin, on the UW campus and they were married the summer before he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics in 1990. Judge Screnock next attended Eastern College (now University) and received his MBA with an emphasis in Urban Economic Development in 1992. Their oldest child was born during graduate school.
Their growing family returned to Wisconsin where Michael sought ways to use his training and talents to serve the public. He received an opportunity to serve another Sauk County community by running the City of Reedsburg’s community development program. Much of this work focused on assisting low income and first-time homeowners make necessary home repairs. He then served as Reedsburg’s full time building inspector and then its finance director. The family left Sauk County so Michael could serve the Chequamegon Bay region in northern Wisconsin – first as Washburn’s city administrator and then as Ashland’s finance director. During this time he worked with many local leaders on strategies to position the entire region for success in the 21st century.
After nearly twelve years serving in local government, and after thoughtful deliberation with his family, Michael decided to return to the University of Wisconsin-Madison to attend law school, where he earned his Juris Doctor degree in 2006.
Judge Screnock next sought a position with a law firm where he could build off of his local government experience and be positioned to work on cases that could have statewide impact. He accepted a position with the Michael Best & Friedrich law firm in its Madison office, where his expectations were realized. He worked on many complex cases as well, including defending Act 10. His work focused on civil litigation and administrative proceedings in a wide variety of subject areas, including real estate and land use disputes, governmental regulation, assessment and taxation, public utility regulation, environmental law, and election law. He worked on numerous cases before the Wisconsin Court of Appeals and Wisconsin Supreme Court. During this time, Judge Screnock also co-authored annual legal updates on Administrative Law topics for a Wisconsin State Bar publication.
In 2015, Judge Screnock was appointed by Governor Walker to a seat on the Sauk County Circuit Court, located in Baraboo. He counts it an honor and privilege to serve his hometown and surrounding communities in this capacity. In 2016, he successfully ran unopposed to retain his seat on the circuit court. During his time on the bench he has seen thousands of cases to their end. As one of three Sauk County judges, he handles every type of case, including juvenile cases, probate, small claims disputes, harassment injunctions, divorce and other family matters, traffic and other ordinance violations, contract and other civil disputes, civil commitments, and every manner of criminal case from disorderly conduct to first-degree intentional homicide. He also has had the pleasure of presiding over the Sauk County Adult Drug Court since its inception in January 2016.
In addition to his professional work, Judge Screnock has remained thoroughly engaged in volunteer community service. Throughout the years he has served as a scout leader, soccer coach, soccer referee, mock trial coach, and math team coach, as well as holding numerous positions within the local church. He also continues to enjoy playing the tuba, and has performed in community bands and small church ensembles.
Michael and Karen have three adult sons and one daughter-in-law, who all live in Wisconsin.
Referendum on Constitutional Amendment to Eliminate the Office of State Treasurer
Voters are being asked whether they favor eliminating the position of State Treasurer, created by the state constitution in 1848. “Over the past 20 years, most powers and duties of the state treasurer and the office of the state treasurer have been either eliminated or transferred to other state agencies,” as a Legislative Reference Bureau report on the amendment notes. “In the 1970s and 1980s, joint resolutions to eliminate the office were offered in almost every legislative session,” the report notes. Those who favor eliminating the position argue it is an anachronism with few powers left and should therefore be eliminated.
Those who oppose this referendum argue the position is needed as part of the state’s checks and balances and to restrain executive power. The LRB report notes that “the vast majority of states have a state treasurer that oversees revenue and finances, although the official title and specific functions of the position vary,” and opponents of the referendum point to this in arguing for keeping the position. For a complete discussion of the issues check the LRB report.
Milwaukee County Board – District 1
Supervisor Theodore Lipscomb, Sr., is known to work hard for his constituents and the community. He and his wife, Nicole, grew up in Milwaukee County’s First District and are proud to raise their three children there too. Lipscomb was first elected to the County Board of Supervisors in 2008, won re-election in 2012 and 2016, and has been elected twice by his peers to serve as Chairman of the Board.
Lipscomb has regularly secured important park and parkway investments, added new bus routes and opposed cuts to critical public services. He also authored legislation that protected the public transit system from privatization and profiteers. Lipscomb was a lead sponsor of the 2012 Ready to Work Initiative which resulted in over 500 Milwaukeeans being trained and placed in jobs with an average wage above $15. His leadership on workforce development was later replicated and co-opted by one of its earliest detractors.
Lipscomb works for the public interest, he has exposed sweetheart contracts and unauthorized pay for political appointees, and has fought for greater transparency in our government. Year after year, he has been one of the most active authors of budget amendments in order to ensure responsible and balanced budgets.
Casey has spent his entire adult life fighting for Wisconsin’s working women and men. First, as an aide to former Congressman David Obey and former Senator Herb Kohl focusing on health care, veteran’s affairs, and education issues. Today, Casey continues on that path as a trial lawyer, representing individuals and working to improve Wisconsin’s workers’ compensation laws.
Casey is a graduate of UW-Madison, where he studied journalism and political theory, and also of Marquette University Law School. Throughout law school, Casey volunteered at the Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinic and was a founding member of Marquette’s Student Veterans Society.
Born and raised in Muskego, Casey has two older sisters who both work and live in Milwaukee County with their families. Casey’s father, Paul, is a Vietnam veteran who serviced dental equipment before retiring in 2016. Casey’s mother, Betty, works as an assistant at UPS.
“The Caseys,” as family and friends call them, currently reside in Glendale. If you see Casey on his morning run down Green Tree Road or picking up groceries at the store, make sure to stop and say “Hi,” he’d love to meet and hear from you.
Milwaukee County Board – District 7
Kenneth Ginlack Sr. earned an associate degree in human services from Milwaukee Area Technical College in 2012, a bachelor’s degree in human services and social work from Upper Iowa University in 2014, and a master’s degree in social work from Loyola University Chicago in 2017. His career experience includes working as a clinical supervisor at Acadia Healthcare, an instructor at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and a clinical case manager at Columbia St. Mary’s Hospital. – via Ballotpedia
I am running for Milwaukee County’s District 7 because I believe that when we work together we can make Milwaukee a great place to live, work, and play.
As a long time resident of Milwaukee with 40+ years as a resident of the district, I have seen some of the not-so-positive changes that have occurred throughout the city. I want to be a part of a new generation of leaders to work on solving some of Milwaukee’s most pressing problems.
I’ve spent my career working for the Medical College of Wisconsin, one of Milwaukee County’s greatest institutions. As your county supervisor, I will apply my administrative background toward solving our greatest challenges and giving our community the representation we deserve.
Milwaukee County Board – District 8
James was born and raised in Southeastern Wisconsin, graduated from the University of Wisconsin Madison and received his law degree from the University of Florida. Since moving to South Milwaukee, he’s fallen in love with the South Shore communities and is involved with Growing South Milwaukee, an initiative working to bring a community garden to South Milwaukee. James is happily married to his wife Stephanie. Stephanie was born in Cudahy, lived in Southeastern Wisconsin her entire life, and is currently a public high school teacher and union member. Together, they have a 2 ½ year-old daughter. James is the Senior Director of Operations and Planning for Bublr Bikes, Milwaukee’s nonprofit bikeshare system.
James has been actively engaged in his community his entire life. In high school, he volunteered at the Kiwanis Club of Greater Racine Pancake Breakfast. While attending Madison, he volunteered at a local hospice. He also volunteered for the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters, working to get the Great Lakes Compact passed. During his time attending law school in Florida, he volunteered with Florida Organic Growers, building raised bed gardens for income qualified neighbors. Today he volunteers for the Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinic to increase access to the civil legal system. This history of public service highlights his willingness to work with others to accomplish goals that help everyone. That is exactly what he will do as your County Supervisor.
I have a long history of political activism. I have lived in Milwaukee County for thirty-five years. I have a B.A. from Ripon College and a Master’s from Marquette University. For twenty-two years, I have worked at Milwaukee Area Technical College. There I teach students including veterans, dislocated workers, and the physically challenged so they can improve their employment opportunities and contribute more to society. In 2012, I married Laura Kukor-Shea, veteran teacher at Divine Mercy School. I am a member of Nativity of the Lord Parish in Cudahy.
Milwaukee County Board – District 9
Patti Logsdon’s background and the experience she will bring to the office of Milwaukee County Supervisor, will help her serve the people of Milwaukee County to the best of her ability.
Patti’s experience includes working as an accountant for over 35 years while raising a family, and remaining active in the community as a poll worker, cheerleading coach, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, and Board Member of several local Milwaukee County non-profit organizations.
Married for 37 years to her high school sweetheart, though currently widowed, Patti is a cancer survivor, proud mom of Bradley and Melissa, joyful grandmother to Samantha, Alison, Connor, and Matthew, and a lifelong resident of Milwaukee County.
She is known as fair, honest, and respectful and will remain true to her principles. Patti is a concerned citizen who would be honored to work as a Public Servant for her community.
Steve F. Taylor was elected to the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors in April 2012 and re-elected in April 2016. He represents the 9th District, which includes Hales Corners and parts of Franklin and Oak Creek. Shortly after he was elected to the Board, Supervisor Taylor was selected by his peers to serve as 2nd Vice-Chairman of the County Board.
Supervisor Taylor serves as Chairman of the Economic and Community Development Committee, and as a member of the Parks, Energy and Environment Committee. In addition, Supervisor Taylor is currently serving an appointment to the Milwaukee County Commission on Aging, Milwaukee Art Museum Board of Trustees, Milwaukee Regional Innovation Center Board of Directors, and the Milwaukee Child Welfare Partnership Council.
A Franklin resident since 2006, Supervisor Taylor has served as an Alderman, as well as the Franklin Common Council President, from April 2008 until April 2014. He served on the Finance, Forward Franklin Development, Licensing, and Civil Celebrations Committees as well as the Community Development Authority. After winning a recall election in September 2015, Supervisor Taylor rejoined the Franklin Common Council.
A native of Muskego, WI, Taylor obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in political science and public administration from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. He was elected to the La Crosse Common Council in 1997 at the age of 21 and served until 2001. From 2002-2006, Taylor lived in East Lansing, Michigan, where he was appointed to and served on the Zoning Board of Appeals.
Milwaukee County Board – District 12
Sylvia Ortiz-Velez is local business leader and community volunteer who will bring common sense solutions to local government. She’ll fight to bring more jobs to District 12 and restore funding for public transit and County Parks. Sylvia is a problem-solver who will work to fix the dysfunction in our county government.
Peggy A. West was elected 12th District Supervisor in 2004 and, after being re-elected in 2008, 2012 and 2016, is serving her fourth term representing 53,000 residents on Milwaukee’s south side. She currently serves as first Vice Chair of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors. Supervisor West also has the unique distinction of being the first Latino/Hispanic American to be elected to the Milwaukee County Board.
Supervisor West grew up in Milwaukee and graduated with a degree in Human Services from the Milwaukee Area Technical College. Prior to her election to the Board, Supervisor West worked for 10 years in the human service field.
Supervisor West is currently Chairwoman of the Finance & Audit Committee and is a member of the Judiciary, Safety & General Services Committee.
Active in her community, Supervisor West was named the 2004 Hispanic Woman of the Year by UMOS, Inc. A committed believer in community service, Supervisor West volunteers for UMOS, Inc., Mexican Fiesta, Hope House, and Journey House, along with a variety of neighborhood clean up initiatives. In addition, Supervisor West is the Meal Program Manager for St. Vincent de Paul Society of Milwaukee where she is able to use both her love of human services with her homeless advocacy.
Peggy serves on the Latina Resource Center Advisory Board, Kosciuszko Community Center Advisory Board, Milwaukee County Capital Improvements Committee, Family Care CMO Governing Board, Continuum of Care Executive Committee, Human Trafficking Task Force of Great Milwaukee, Wisconsin Coalition Against Homelessness and UMOS, Inc. Board of Directors. She is Co-Chair of the South Side National Night Out Planning Committee as well as a founding member of the Cesar E. Chavez Drive Advancement Committee.
Milwaukee County Board – District 16
John F. Weishan, Jr. was elected County Supervisor in April of 2000 and re-elected in 2004, 2008 and 2012.
Supervisor Weishan is a lifelong resident of West Allis and is a graduate of West Milwaukee High School. Before serving on the County Board, he served on active duty in the United States Marine Corps from 1991 to 1995. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Business from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee.
Supervisor Weishan is currently the Vice Chair of Transportation, Public Works & Transit Committee, the Vice Chair of the Personnel Committee, and he also serves as a member of the Economic and Community Development Committee.
John and his wife Karen have two children, Maddalyn and John Noah. They reside in the city of West Allis.
I am a young man inspired to make a difference in my District. As an active member in my church community I volunteer as a 7th grade basketball coach(6-1). Once I started to experience moderate success as a personal investor I began sharing with my peers educational resources. As a student at MATC I study Business Management. Through my life I have become highly motivated to listen to, learn from, and an advocate for the people. I chose to run for Milwaukee County Supervisor District 16 to educate my community on the affects of local politics in day-to-day life.
Milwaukee County Board – District 17
Born and raised in Appleton, WI
A blue collar, every day guy who spent over a decade as a commercial cleaner.
Resident of Greenfield for 5+ years
Former member of the Greenfield Beautification Committee.
Volunteered on Governor Walker’s first election.
Campaign manager for Red Arnold for State Senate.
Volunteer for Noah Leigh for West Allis/West Milwaukee school board.
Tony Staskunas is a lifelong resident of the 17th District, having been born and raised in the City of West Allis. Tony graduated from West Allis Nathan Hale High School in 1979 where he was actively involved as a member of the football, wrestling, and track and field teams, symphony orchestra, and school newspaper.
Following graduation from Nathan Hale High School, Tony attended and graduated from UW-Milwaukee in 1983 cum laude in political science. Tony’s strong academic performance at UW-Milwaukee earned him election to the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa honor society.
Following his graduation from UWM, Tony attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison Law School, graduating in May 1986 with a doctor of law degree.
Tony has practiced law since 1986 and is the owner of Law Offices of Anthony J. Staskunas in West Allis.
Tony as been married to his wife, Elizabeth, for 28 years and they have three children, John (age 25), Michael (age 23), and Anne (age 19). Tony has enjoyed being actively involved and participating with his children over the years. Tony has served as a volunteer youth coach for St. Matthias soccer and basketball, and Little League of West Allis. Tony has also served as a member of the St. Matthias Athletic Board and the St. Matthias Home and School Association.
Milwaukee County Board – District 18
Deanna Alexander, an accountant and auditor, serves as County Supervisor in northwest Milwaukee County. She was re-elected for a second term on the non-partisan County Board in April 2016 and represents a district of over 53,000 people.
Widely credited for surviving and standing her ground in a sea of policymakers pushing toward socialism and unwise management of the County’s assets, Deanna played a key role in reforming the Milwaukee County Board by public supporting cutting the tax dollars spent in the County Board’s budget, even though it included more than a 50% reduction for her own salary and benefits. Deanna accepted that salary reduction in April 2016.
Deanna demonstrated selfless courage and leadership by stepping forward as the whistleblower when fellow Supervisors tried to illegally negotiate contracts, ignoring state laws and putting the county at great risks for future lawsuits.
In 2013, she was named to a national “Top 10 Under 40 Future Leaders” list and spoke at CPAC St. Louis. She was also named a “Right Woman to Watch” by Charlie Sykes’ Right Wisconsin, and in 2014 was named a finalist for the Iron Lady Award. In 2015 she was recognized by the Milwaukee Police Association for leadership and named a “Hometown Hero” when she spoke up in support of law enforcement during times of protest and threats.
Deanna currently serves on Milwaukee County’s Intergovernmental Relations Committee, the Health & Human Needs Committee, and the Judiciary Committee. Deanna has also served on Milwaukee County’s Parks, Energy & Environment Committee, on the Transportation, Public Works & Transit Committee, on the Finance, Personnel and Audit Committee, and has a reputation for maintaining good relationships with others, across branches of government or levels of government, both in the public sector and private sector.
Supervisor Alexander has held more than two dozen public listening sessions since joining Milwaukee’s legislative branch of government. She also chairs the Emergency Medical Services Council as part of her commitment to stand by public safety, and served from 2012 to 2016 on the Milwaukee Child Welfare Partnership Council.
Deanna has served as an enlisted field artillery soldier in the Wisconsin Army National Guard and is a member of the NRA. Deanna is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside and she has studied law and public administration at Regent University and tax law at the University of Denver. She is a member of the Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants and has worked as a small business owner, aiding local school administrators in navigating cumbersome government regulations. Deanna currently works for the State of Wisconsin as the Chief of Ongoing Services for the Department of Children and Families – Division of Milwaukee Child Protective Services, helping in oversight and administration for Wisconsin’s foster care resources.
Deanna lives in Milwaukee with her husband Philip. They are proud parents of two daughters and hope to soon also open their home to children in need through foster care and adoption.
I was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I grew up on the northwest side of Milwaukee, and attended Keefe Avenue Elementary school where I was a member of student council and was part of the Girl Scouts of America. I attended Messmer High school, where I was class president, a member of The National Honor Society. I went on to receive my Bachelor’s Degree from Mount Mary University in 2010 in Behavioral Science and went on to get my Master’s degree in Social Work from Loyola University- Chicago in 2016. I married James Ashley in 2013 and I am a long time resident of the 18th district.
I have been committed to public service my entire life. I completed a special internship at Loyola University, in which I worked at St. Rose Youth and Family Services in Milwaukee. Over the course of this internship, I learned how to facilitate and manage groups, and assisted with advocacy work for teens who don’t understand mental illness. I worked for Milwaukee Mental Health associates as a supervisor for the Targeted Case management program serving adults with severe and persistent mental illness. I also founded an organization called Social Workers as Politicians or SWAP. SWAP was created to bridge the gap between social workers, and politics. Currently, I am the Director of Social Services at The Bridges of Milwaukee Rehab and Care center.
Right now, we have an entrenched incumbent who has failed to respond to the needs and wants of residents. We deserve better in Milwaukee, which is why I am running to be the next County Board Supervisor of the 18th District. I look forward to talking with neighbors and community leaders to find exciting and innovative ways to be a part of change that we can see. I thank you and look forward to earning your support.