Wendy Katherine Baumann serves as president/CVO of The Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation (WWBIC), a statewide economic development corporation. Baumann accepted this challenging position in the community in 1994, providing the leadership required to insure the achievement of WWBIC’s mission and to uphold the philosophy of serving businesses owned by women, minorities and low-wealth individuals in Wisconsin.
Former director of Small Business Development at The Milwaukee Enterprise Center (MEC), Baumann’s credentials, experiences and enthusiasm have been key in obtaining the objectives set forth for WWBIC in developing new and innovative models for business assistance programming and small business development. Baumann’s ability to dialogue and successfully collaborate with public, private and diverse groups has been key.
Baumann served as executive director of The Hispanic Chamber Of Commerce of Wisconsin in 1987 and 1988. During that time, the Chamber was honored as “Hispanic Chamber of the Year” by the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Under her direction, the membership organization was recognized on a state and national level, increasing membership by over 500%. Baumann has also worked at The Council for the Spanish Speaking as director of development and research and prior to that, as a program coordinator for a job placement program for disadvantaged individuals at Goodwill Industries.
Baumann has served on numerous national and local boards including: The Association of Enterprise Opportunity, Office Depot – National Women’s Advisory Committee, The Association of Women’s Business Centers, The National SBA Advisory Board, Johnson Bank, WHEDA and Northern Trust – New Markets Tax Credit Boards, Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago, The Institute of World Affairs, The Milwaukee Public Market Board, UW-Milwaukee Alumni Board, Milwaukee Metropolitan Civic Alliance, Milwaukee North Shore Rotary Club and others.
Current membership and board service includes: Consumer Federation of America – America Saves, Governor’s Council on Financial Literacy-Chair, City of Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson’s Economic Advisory Board, Opportunity Finance Network, Association of Enterprise Opportunity, The Association of Women’s Business Centers, Friends of SBA Microloan Program, Mission Lenders Working Group, CDFI Coalition, Kiva US Advisory Committee, Greater Milwaukee Committee, Associated Bank Advisory Board, UW-Milwaukee Women Leadership Conference Advisory Committee, Self Help Credit Union Advisory Board, Herzing University Board-Secretary, Professional Dimensions, TEMPO, Milwaukee Women, Inc., Cardinal Dery Board and others.
Baumann received both master’s and baccalaureate degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She was honored by UW-Milwaukee as The Graduate of the Last Decade in 1998, Professional Dimension’s – Sacajawea Award in 2014, BizTimes Media’s Woman Executive of the Year in 2017, and Association for Enterprise Opportunity Impact Award for Innovation on Main Street in 2022. Baumann has two adult daughters and sons, three grandchildren, a fabulous border collie and resides in a log cabin in Mequon, Wisconsin.