Jeramey Jannene

Keith Stanley Leaving Near West Side Partners

Group seeks new leader, Stanley moving to Charlotte to replicate nonprofit model.

By - Nov 7th, 2022 02:40 pm
Keith Stanley and Mayor Tom Barrett in 2015. Photo by Jack Fennimore.

Keith Stanley and Mayor Tom Barrett in 2015. Photo by Jack Fennimore.

Near West Side Partners (NWSP), the nonprofit organization focused on the cluster of neighborhoods just west of downtown Milwaukee, is in the market for a new leader.

Founding executive director Keith Stanley is moving to Charlotte to serve as president and CEO of the nonprofit University City Partners, an organization seeking to replicate the NWSP model.

“Near West Side Partners is the transformative organization it is today because of Keith’s leadership, passion and vision,” said Rana Altenburg, NWSP board chair and associate vice president for public affairs at Marquette University, in a statement. “We wish Keith the best as he replicates the successes of the Near West Side in his new position, and we look forward to building on the positive momentum he helped establish in our community.”

Stanley will make the move at the end of the year.

NWSP was created in 2014 by area anchors Marquette University, Harley-Davidson, Molson Coors, Advocate Aurora Health Care and Potawatomi Business Development Corporation. It’s focused on stabilizing and growing the neighborhoods, including Concordia, Avenues West and Merrill Park, between Interstate 43 and Wisconsin Highway 175 and W. Vliet St. and Interstate 94.

“It has been an honor to serve the Near West Side and bear witness to the major accomplishments of the community over the past eight years,” said Stanley. “Near West Side Partners has established itself as a national model for private-public partnership and resident engagement resulting in community revitalization thanks to the hard work and dedication of its staff, board, anchor institutions, business owners and residents, and I have no doubt its list of successes will continue to grow in the years to come.”

The organization includes a nonprofit arm as well as a business improvement district. Its deep-pocketed sponsors have led the push to develop a new state office building at N. 27th St. and W. Wisconsin Ave., while NWSP’s community-focused programming has addressed neighborhood concerns like public safety and small business support. NWSP is backing the Concordia 27 development at N. 27th St. and W. Wells St. and is to serve as an anchor tenant. It hosts the annual Rev-Up MKE business pitch competition, whose winners have supported NWSP’s effort to revitalize W. Vliet St. by leasing brick-and-mortar spaces along the street. The organization also backed the creation of the Vliet Street Oasis. The organization helped secure a federal, $1.3 million Choice Neighborhood planning grant.

Stanley, prior to role at NWSP, worked in City Hall as chief of staff to then-council President Willie Hines, Jr. He also served as the director of the SOHI District, an organization focused on revitalizing N. 27th St. south of W. Highland Ave.

“Keith has been instrumental in leading the transformation of the Near West Side and bringing national attention to the collective work of the Near West Side Partners,” said Julie Anding, a vice president with Harley-Davidson and chair of the NWSP Steering Committee. “Harley-Davidson is committed to the long-term success of the neighborhood, and Near West Side Partners can count on our support as we continue to work together to make the Near West Side a great place to live, work and play.”

“Keith’s support has fostered growth in our city and campus—from working with Marquette faculty and students on meaningful, community-engaged research in the Near West Side to cultivating entrepreneurship among our students. It is a testament to Keith’s energy and dedication that other cities across the country are seeking to partner with local anchor institutions and replicate the model of Milwaukee’s Near West Side Partners,” said Marquette President Mike Lovell.

NWSP associate director Lindsey St. Arnold Bell will lead the organization while a permanent replacement is sought. St. Arnold Bell has been with the organization for seven years, having previously served as the secretary for the Board of Zoning Appeals.

Interested applicants are encouraged to email Altenburg at

Categories: Real Estate, Weekly

One thought on “Keith Stanley Leaving Near West Side Partners”

  1. Martha Brown says:

    Keith has been a tremendous leader, and he’ll do great things in Charlotte. Congratulations, Keith — we appreciate your longstanding commitment to the near west side, and we’ll miss your passionate support for our neighborhoods.

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