December Luncheon

December’s Speaker is Rita Ramacci!

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Rita Ramacci has been in the food industry for more than 25 years opening her first business, Cookin’ Babes, in 1990. Over the next ten years, she and a partner built their business catering private parties, weddings and many events at the Kemper Center. Rita then moved on to work with Ladies Room 3 at one of Kenosha’s treasures, Frank’s Diner. In 2001 she opened Francine’s Fine Catering using the kitchen at Frank’s to prepare her food until she purchased her current location, 5147 33rd Avenue, in 2004.

After 3 months of renovation work with her father, Rita began utilizing her new kitchen. Rita focuses on corporate functions for area businesses including schools, museums and City and County events. She is the exclusive caterer for The Colergét Conference Center. In addition to her catering work Rita has also taught many cooking classes at the Kenosha Public Museum and as an adjunct at Gateway Technical College in the Culinary Arts program.

Prior to her career as a chef, Rita was a dress maker creating wedding dresses and costumes for the Madrigal feast as well as the Renaissance Fair. She earned a degree in Chemistry at the Metropolitan University in Denver, Colorado.

When: Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Time: Check in 11:45 | Lunch 12:00
Where: The Colerget, 6520 67th St
Kenosha, Wisconsin
Cost: $25 per person

July Quest Speaker

Jessica Sippel

Jessica SippelSippel Law, LLC
Trust and Estate Planning

Jessica’s primary area of law practice is estate planning, probate, trust administration, and real estate.  She advises and counsels clients in estate and tax planning for multi-million dollar estates as well as clients who have smaller estates.  She has been an active educator and speaker for private families, financial planners and accountants and welcomes any opportunity to share the importance of estate planning with her professional and community fellows.  Ms. Sippel presently is a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin, Milwaukee Bar Association, Financial Planning Association, Association for Women Lawyers, and the Association for Marquette University Women.  

Jessica Sippel (Wolff) grew up in Waterford, WI.  She attended St. Thomas Aquinas and Catholic Central High School.  She graduated cum laude from Marquette University in three years with duo majors in French Literature and English Literature.  She then went on to receive her law degree at Marquette University Law School in 2011.  She has been married for six years to her high school sweetheart Brian R. Sippel (also a Burlington native) and together they have two children, Jude and Natalie.  She enjoys spending time with her family, yoga, singing, playing piano, sustainable and organic living practices and the outdoors.


June Guest Speaker

JoAnne Brandes

Leadership Excellence Center

JoAnne BrandesJoAnne Brandes is the founder and co-president of the Leadership Excellence Center, an attorney, an outside Board member of several corporations, and speaker and consultant specializing in leadership development, corporate structure and governance, cultural transformation and change management. JoAnne retired after an over 25 year career with the  S.C. Johnson family of companies as the Executive Vice President, CAO, General Counsel and Secretary of JohnsonDiversey, Inc., responsible for all legal matters, Human Resources, Communications, Public Affairs and administration for the company and its over 65 international and domestic subsidiaries.  JoAnne was a member of the company’s management committee and had major responsibility for the company’s acquisition and integration within a few years of global companies adding over $2 billion in sales. JoAnne was named “Working Mother of the Year” by Working Mother Magazine several years ago for her work in developing corporate child care and other family friendly programs for employees.

May Guest Speaker

Christine Weyker

The KAC – Kenosha Achievement Center, Inc

Christine WeykerI grew up in New Berlin and moved to Milwaukee to pursue my degree in Education.  While attending college I met my husband and was married one month after graduating with my bachelor’s degree.  My husband’s job brought us to Kenosha in 1989.

While running a childcare facility in Milwaukee, I completed my Master’s degree in Leadership and Advocacy at National Louis University. I continued my work with young children through the Birth – 3 program and joined the KAC team in 1998.  My intention in 98’ was to establish the B-3 program at KAC then get a “real” job in corporate America. Now, 18 years later, I am KAC’s Chief Executive Officer.  Needless to say, I found my niche working on behalf of people with special needs.  I am proud to be part of a team whose mission is to remove barriers, change perceptions and build confidence.  Our goal is that people regardless of ability are given opportunities for personal growth and success.

April Guest Speaker

Crystal Miller

Frontida Assisted Living

Crystal MillerCrystal Miller was born in Canada and grew up in northwestern Ontario where her parents served as evangelical missionaries.  She is the oldest of five children and credits her genetics and her birth order as contributing to her personality and work ethic!   Crystal attended Maranatha Baptist University and earned a B.S. in Business Management.  She and Steve married in 1995 shortly after her graduation and they moved to Kenosha in 1997.

Crystal’s entrepreneurial spirit and determined nature have been a great fit with her husband Steve’s visionary and creative mind and together they have attempted, built, failed, and finally thrived in business over the last 20 years.  Frontida, Inc. was born in 2009, beginning by managing assisted living homes in Wisconsin.  Crystal often talks about her passion – building a positive company culture and developing the people she is privileged to lead.  She reminds every team member that Frontida’s culture is the cumulative attitude and behaviors of each member of the team.  Crystal leads Frontida by consistently making the company values a part of every day life at work.  She is regularly found encouraging personal responsibility and spending time building into her team members and company leadership.  Crystal desires to build their trust by living the values that she has adopted for Frontida: *Tell the Truth, *Work Hard, *Follow the Rules, *Love Others, and *Have Fun.  Over the past seven years Frontida has grown and now operates eight assisted living homes in southeastern Wisconsin. In 2015, Frontida was honored by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel as a Top Workplace.

March Guest Speaker

Nathan Dosch

First Business Bank

Business Succession Planning

Nathan DoschNate Dosch has joined First Business Trust & Investments with more than 10 years of combined experience in private legal practice and in public accounting focusing on tax, estate and succession planning strategies for high-net worth individuals and families. He earned his J.D. from Marquette University Law School, his M.S. in Taxation from UW – Milwaukee and his B.S. in Business Administration from North Dakota State University. Nate is active in a number of youth sports programs including Menomonee Falls Little League, Brookfield Indoor Soccer and Upward Basketball at Elmbrook Church. He resides in Menomonee Falls with his wife and two boys.

February Guest Speaker

Karen Hansen Johnson

The Shalom Center

KenoshaKaren earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Social Work from Dana College in Blair, Nebraska.  At the same time Karen was away at school, her mother Greta with the  support of Karen’s father Paul, started the Kenosha Soup Kitchen which is now known as the Shalom Center.  After living away from Kenosha for nearly 30 years, Karen returned to her hometown in 2013 with her  husband Todd, to be her ailing mother’s primary caregivers.  After Greta passed away in May 2014, Karen and Todd decided to make Kenosha their home and continue the legacy her parents began with the Shalom Center.

Karen joined the Shalom Center Board of Directors in September 2014.  She is on a mission to better inform the community of what the Shalom Center has been able to accomplish in its 30 plus years with the generosity of its amazing donors and volunteers.  Karen  serves on the following committees within the board: Building Committee, Public Relations Committee, Fundraising Committee and the Capital Campaign Committee.  She began the popular cheesy scarf fundraiser for Shalom.  She developed and brought to life Shalom’s first mascot, SOUPY Shalom.  Karen is also currently employed with Rosenthal Heating & Air Conditioning as a Commercial Account Manager.

January Guest Speaker

Jackie Zach

Action Coach of Elm Grove

Jackie Zach

The 7 Most Important Things You Need to Know About ActionCOACH Jackie Zach

1) Jackie is a certified business coach. She has been certified by ActionCOACH, the World’s #1 Business Coaching Firm.

2) Jackie is also a business owner, just like you. Jackie also owns a gourmet specialty store so she understands the successes and challenges you face as a business owner.

3) Jackie understands how working with a coach made a positive difference to her and her business. Jackie started her business in December 2008, right in the middle of one of the worst economic periods in the recent past. Working with a coach helped her face the challenges of that time, hold her accountable and grow her business into the profitable enterprise it is today. Jackie wants to pay it forward by working with other business owners to grow their businesses and reach heights they never thought possible.

4) Jackie understands the importance of sales and cash flow in your business. Cash is king! Jackie can work with you to help you increase your sales and better manage your cash flow.

5) Jackie understands the importance of working ON your business, not just IN it. When you work IN your business it can only grow to your capacity. Once you start working ON your business the possibilities are endless. Jackie will work with you to develop a business that isn’t just a job but a “commercial, profitable enterprise that works without you.”

6) Jackie knows the importance of having a great team as you grow your business and have FUN doing it! People are the backbone of any business. Jackie can show you a proven process for recruiting great people. She can also work with you to make sure that you have the systems in place to train and retain great people once they are part of your organization.

7) Jackie is a Milwaukee native. She graduated from Greendale High School and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She gives back to her community through her involvement as an executive committee member of the Brookfield Convention and Visitors bureau, a member of the marketing committee member of The Plaza and a member of the Brookfield Chamber of Commerce.

December Guest Speakers

Anita Potts, BA, CCM | Ashley Bardwell
Kenosha County Aging & Disability Resource Center

Anita M. Potts, BA, CCM
Anita PottsWhen Anita graduated from college, she had no idea that she not only would become a caregiver for family, but would engage in a career that would involve becoming an advocate for many adults with disabilities, mental illness, developmental disabilities and seniors.  Anita returned to college at 36 years old and graduated from Carthage College earning a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology.  Anita also received a Certificate in Case Management from the University of Wisconsin/Milwaukee.   Anita enjoyed internships with community programs that included Meals on Wheels, and Daybreak adult dementia day program which allowed her to ease into becoming a Case Manager for Lutheran Social Services providing services and support to adults for the Community Options Program.    Six years later, the Wisconsin State funded Community Options Program became the now known Family Care Program and is provided by the Community Care Organization where Anita was employed for 7 years.  During Anita’s employment at both Lutheran Social Services and Community Care, Anita enjoyed being on the Board of Directors for the Daybreak program and volunteered for Meals on Wheels delivering meals to homebound seniors for 9 years.

Anita also was a Case Manager with Kenosha Area Family & Aging Services and provided information related to community services and support for adults 65 and over via the federal funded Community Living Program.

Anita initiated and for the past 6 years has been a certified co-leader for Powerful Tools for Caregivers in Kenosha County.   Powerful Tools for Caregivers is a six-week program for adults where caregivers develop a wealth of self-care tools to reduce personal stress; change negative self-talk; communicate their needs to family members and healthcare or service providers; communicate more effectively in challenging situations; recognize the messages in their emotions, deal with difficult feelings; and make tough caregiving decisions.

Even though Anita is retired, she continues to be active in the Kenosha community as a co-leader for the Powerful Tools for Caregivers program; Community Outreach Specialist for Right At Home –a home care agency, in which she provides presentations to adults with information pertinent to aging seniors and caregivers; and is certified from the Arthritis Foundation as an exercise instructor teaching water exercise at the Pleasant Prairie RecPlex, exercise instructor for seniors whom reside at Beech Pointe Senior Apartment Complex, and aerobic/exercise sub-instructor at the Kenosha Senior Center.
Enjoying working with seniors, Anita also worked at Kenosha Estates Nursing Home (previously Beverly Healthcare) as an Admissions Coordinator.  Always interested in healthcare, Anita worked at Victory Hospital (now Vista Healthcare) in Waukegan as an Administrative Assistant/Physician Referral Coordinator.

Anita continues to advocate for seniors at various community health fairs throughout Kenosha and has personally cared for many family members through- out the years.

 Ashley Bardwell
AshleyBardwellAshley Bardwell is a Long Term Care Specialist at the Kenosha County Aging & Disability Resource Center.  She has received certifications in Powerful Tools for Caregivers, Alliance of Information & Referral for Aging and Crisis Intervention.

She is currently the Wisconsin Alliance of Information & Referral Systems Board Vice President and Affiliate Representative for the National Alliance of Information & Referral Systems.

Ashley received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a Conflict Analysis & Resolution Certification from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

Her professional experience includes working as a Physical Therapy Technician at the Balance & Wellness Center and a Marketing Assistant for Sports Physical Therapy & Rehab Specialists.

Ashley is a lifelong resident of Kenosha and is expecting her first child in the New Year.

November Guest Speaker

Sandie Bisciglia |
Carthage College |  “The Book That Changed My Life”

Sandie BiseigliaSandie Bisciglia is Director of Diversity and an Assistant Professor of Religion at Carthage College.  She received an MA in Theology from Sacred Heart School of Theology and teaches courses in Understandings of Religion, Women and the Bible, Marketing of Religion and The Theology of Science Fiction.  Her areas of interest are ways to become a fully integrated person and finding holistic and healing intersections that lead to successful lives.