Personnel File

Robert Kern

Robert Kern is the founder of Generac Power Systems.

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Content referencing Robert Kern

Campaign Cash: The State’s Top 25 Fat Cats
Campaign Cash

The State’s Top 25 Fat Cats

Diane Hendricks and Lynde Uihlein lead the list of top political donors over last 25 years.

Campaign Cash: WMC Loves Republican Governors Group
Campaign Cash

WMC Loves Republican Governors Group

State’s big business group gives most of the $1.9 million from state donors to GOP campaign group.

Campaign Cash: Big Donors Get Big Tax Breaks
Campaign Cash

Big Donors Get Big Tax Breaks

Corporate welfare recipients contributed more than $800,000 to Gov. Walker.

Campaign Cash: Walker Gets $5.1 Million Boost
Campaign Cash

Walker Gets $5.1 Million Boost

Republican Governors Association books $5.1 million of TV ads to support Gov. Walker's reelection.

Campaign Cash: Republican Governors Group Has State Clout
Campaign Cash

Republican Governors Group Has State Clout

The DC-based association gets Wisconsin donors, gave $18 million to Walker’s three elections.

Eyes on Milwaukee: MSOE Unveils $34 Million Building
Eyes on Milwaukee

MSOE Unveils $34 Million Building

Four-story academic building to be funded by largest alumni gift in school history.

Campaign Cash: Joint Finance Okays School Choice Expansion
Campaign Cash

Joint Finance Okays School Choice Expansion

Powerful voucher lobby, including Betsy DeVos, has spent millions to support state politicians.

Campaign Cash: $8.5 Million Reasons Why GOP Expanding Vouchers
Campaign Cash

$8.5 Million Reasons Why GOP Expanding Vouchers

Multi millions in campaign donations, mostly from out-of-state voucher supporters.

Medical College Gets Largest Gift Ever

Medical College Gets Largest Gift Ever

$38 million donation establishes new collaborative network, creates new educational opportunities

Campaign Cash: Bill Goes Easy on Business Polluters
Campaign Cash

Bill Goes Easy on Business Polluters

And manufacturers donate to legislators pushing the proposal.

Campaign Cash: Bill Reveals School Voucher Costs
Campaign Cash

Bill Reveals School Voucher Costs

Democratic bill says property tax bills must show cost to local school district.

Money Talks: Gov. Walker to Appoint Former Attorney for Major Right-Wing Donors’ Foundation
Press Release

Money Talks: Gov. Walker to Appoint Former Attorney for Major Right-Wing Donors’ Foundation

What Daniel Kelly Lacks in Judicial Experience He Makes Up For in Connections to Big Money and Right-Wing Extremism

MSOE buys downtown block next to Park East from BMO Harris Bank
Citation

MSOE buys downtown block next to Park East from BMO Harris Bank

Plenty of Horne: New Apartments Planned for Third Ward
Plenty of Horne

New Apartments Planned for Third Ward

Building which once housed Northwestern Coffee Mills will be renovated to include 15 urban apartments and two retail spaces.

Plenty of Horne:  The Rise of the Kern Foundation
Plenty of Horne

The Rise of the Kern Foundation

The Waukesha-based foundation has quietly grown to assets of $627 million, nearly as big as the Bradley Foundation. It also leans conservative.

Eyes on Milwaukee: MSOE Renames Soccer Field
Eyes on Milwaukee

MSOE Renames Soccer Field

Kovac wonders why MSOE would name it after its current president. And why an engineering school couldn't dig a deep enough hole for its soccer field.

MSOE Soccer Garage Debuts

MSOE Soccer Garage Debuts

MSOE unveils parking garage, athletic field complex.

How Urban are Marquette, MIAD, MSOE, and UWM?

How Urban are Marquette, MIAD, MSOE, and UWM?

Milwaukee is lucky to have a number of higher education institutions in its most urban neighborhoods.

MSOE Proposes Parking Garage with Athletic Field in the Park East (Renderings)

MSOE Proposes Parking Garage with Athletic Field in the Park East (Renderings)

Milwaukee School of Engineering is proposing the construction of a $30 million, 780-car parking garage, that would have an athletic field on the roof of the building. About 500 of the 780 parking spots would be leased to business and the general public, generating taxable revenue for MSOE.

Milwaukee is a Rising Tech City

Milwaukee is a Rising Tech City

Barcamp Milwaukee 2007 Originally uploaded by marcusnelson According to Forbes, Milwaukee is an up-and-coming tech city. They tout the strength of some of the biggest companies in the area, Rockwell Automation and Johnson Controls. What did they overlook? The strength of business brewing activities afoot in the city. BarCampMilwaukee, DrupalCampWisconsin, MilwaukeeDevHouse, Web414, and the KEEN efforts at local universities. Not to mention the emerging angel investment groups including Silicon Pastures. The tech community efforts in Milwaukee out pace the strength of many other fresh coast cities and are second to only Chicago, and they’re only getting stronger. There isn’t any guarantee that these activities will lead to new wealth-generating businesses, but they’re certainly at the very least creating a supply of talented and connected web experts who can create significant competitive advantages for area firms.

Gould Takes Journal Buyout, Rips Grohmann Museum One More Time

Gould Takes Journal Buyout, Rips Grohmann Museum One More Time

Whitney Gould took an early retirement buyout from Journal Communications a little over a month ago.  Her send off column was titled “Retiring, not tiring of quality design.” Ever since moving to Milwaukee three years ago I’ve enjoyed her reporting on issues involving building design. My views began to disagree with hers when she started to question the restoration of the former check processing center on the corner of Broadway and State St into the Grohmann Museum, a museum dedicated to the showcasing of men (and women) at work throughout time, at the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE). I began to wonder if she cared that the new Grohmann Museum would finally build a book-end for the MSOE campus with the Kern Center, rehab an underused and unattractive building downtown, and build a transition piece from Milwaukee City Hall north to the Kern Center and Park East neighborhood.  Add to that the fact that the financing was entirely provided by Eckhart Grohmann.  In fact Robert & Patricia Kern and Eckhart Grohmann deserve nothing but admiration and applause for their commitment to producing well-rounded engineers in downtown Milwaukee. To be fair, Whitney Gould does address some of the these facts and does give a fair amount of praise to Grohmann for his contribution.  I do disagree with her on a few things though. Her appraisal of the building as a cheap impersonation of the style of a bygone era is lacking in insight.  One needs to only walk from City Hall, past the Grohmann Museum, and to the Kern Center to see the bridge the museum forms between the past and present architectural styles.  Unlike many other bland glass buildings in many other cities, Grohmann and the architects at Uihlein Wilson created something distinctly Milwaukee and distinctly MSOE.   The building meshes perfectly with the Kern Center both inside and out thanks to Uihlein Wilson designing both buildings, and forms a southern book end of the MSOE campus on Broadway to match the Kern Center’s north anchor position.  MSOE should be praised for finally developing a physical identity, especially while both Marquette and UWM expand theirs in a much more public fashion. She, along with other members of the art community, also seem to take offense that no one that works at the museum has true art credentials.  Speaking as someone who has been in the museum many times, the artwork is displayed just as it in any museum and curator John Kopmeier is just as qualified to discuss the content of the collection as anyone with an art degree. My final point of disagreement with Gould is over her obsession with the Nazi art work in the collection.  She seems to hold this belief that the Nazi-attachment to the artwork is hidden from viewers, it’s not.  It is not outwardly stated that “hey, this painting could contain Nazi slaves”, but if you ask someone they will tell you.  They will also tell you that the paintings featuring Egyptians might contain slaves […]

Word on the Street (12.17.2007)

Word on the Street (12.17.2007)

Links from the Milwaukee-informationsphere Mary Louise Schumacher is yet another art person doesn’t think it’s a good idea to build a recognizable landmark that will increase pedestrian traffic in downtown Milwaukee. Hofbrauhaus Milwaukee, a proposed German beer hall and restaurant, is likely coming next The Brewery development at the old Pabst brewery in Blue Ribbon Hall after the settlement of a lawsuit involving Brew City Redevelopment LLC with the complex’s former owners, WisPark LLC. The article makes no mention of the existing Old German Beer Hall and how urban Milwaukee is delightfully reinventing itself more in the fashion of a city like Munich, Germany. Robert Kern, of Generac fame and fortune, is powering a change in the way the state handles engineering education through his foundation (Kern Family Foundation). Two urban Milwaukee schools are at the center of this in MSOE and Marquette, through the recruitment of Project Lead the Way students form high schools and their participation in KEEN (Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network). Urban Milwaukee would like to applaud the efforts of Robert Kern for his visionary leadership in truly investing in the future of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and the entire Fresh Coast economy and education system. The Journal Sentinel takes a look at how you can reduce your power consumption and what effects it will have. Absolutely worth your time to read. Dave Reid takes a look at the Kane Commons development and gives us a construction update of the Breakwater Condos and The Residences on Water.

The Roundup: Mequon Turns Voter Away
The Roundup

Mequon Turns Voter Away

The City of Mequon told a local man who tried to register and vote at City Hall last week that he was “too late.”