From the Editor – Opportunities to connect in meaningful ways

Posted on Jan 1, 2013 :: Editor
Margaret LeBrun
Posted by , Insight on Business Staff Writer

Just doing great work and accomplishing great things is not enough. It takes a concerted effort, the development of a brand – and then a little shouting from the rooftops to get your message across.

So it is with Oshkosh. Business and community leaders know they have some really great things going on there (See “Winning combination,” page 37, and “Face Time with Rob Kleman,” page 17.) Collectively they recently announced the launch of Opportunity Oshkosh, a campaign to promote economic development opportunities, designed to strengthen and diversify the local economy.

The Oshkosh area has led the New North region with the lowest unemployment rate, 6.5 percent, in the last decade. It’s a leader in commercial and industrial construction, with $372 million in new projects over the past seven years. It’s got the powerhouse of Oshkosh Corp., (which, in the face of defense cuts, has landed contracts for the family of medium-tactile vehicles, a class the military expects to need in the future). And it’s got the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, with an economic impact on the community estimated at more than $500 million within a 30-mile radius.

How is Oshkosh getting the word out? One of the ways is in a series of videos. Interviews with several business and community leaders appear on a YouTube page. From the chief executive officer of Oshkosh Corp., Charlie Szews, to University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh Chancellor Rick Wells, each adds a unique take on what makes the area tick. Find the videos, and more, via the website The next phase of the initiative involves research into the top industries for growth. Watch for the results in the coming months.

Call it serendipity: Oshkosh will be the location for Insight’s fourth annual InDevelopment conference on Feb. 19 (see Connections, page 20). Designed to bring commercial real estate and economic development professionals together, the day offers prime opportunities for networking. The event includes a panel discussion on Opportunity Oshkosh.

Our keynote, Mark Barbash, will kick off the day sharing his tried-and-true tips for answering the question everyone wants to know, “Where is the money?” With 30 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, including as former chief economic development officer for the Ohio Department of Development, Barbash is in a unique position to share his secrets. In his current role he consults for clients nationwide, including his home state of Wisconsin.

Another of our featured speakers will be Dan Cohen, director of tenant representation, Mid-America Real Estate Group – Wisconsin. Look for InDevelopment details at

InDevelopment is one of several events that we at Insight Publications are involved in coordinating each year – and events have become an important part of fulfilling our mission to “connect business and people in meaningful ways.” To remind our readers of all the opportunities we offer for helping you share your message, I’d like to again invite you to check out our new corporate website, We hope you’re pleasantly surprised with the variety of communication channels you find there.

From there, you will also find information on our new VIP Membership program. As a VIP you’ll receive exclusive perks designed to enhance your experience with Insight. Besides discounts and invitations to special events, it includes a subscription to our monthly magazine. As we’ve launched this great program, we are also offering an alternative option for you to sign up for our basic subscription program. Subscribe for either option on our website by clicking on the VIP Member logo.

Among the perks of our Insight VIP Member program: A celebration of our fifth anniversary in April at the Outer Edge in Appleton. It’s sure to be a good time – you won’t want to miss it!

Margaret LeBrun

About Margaret LeBrun

Co-Publisher, Executive Editor View all posts by Margaret LeBrun →