D.B. Reinhart Institute for Ethics in Leadership

Leadership at Noon

Since 2002, the D.B. Reinhart Institute for Ethics in Leadership has collaborated with the Dahl School of Business to host a series of "brown bag" presentations featuring regional business leaders. The purpose of the series is to bring students and community members together for regular discussions about the values and virtues that inform successful business practices.  

The presentations are free and open to the public. No registration is required. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lunch to the event. A limited number of box lunches are available for purchase.

2017-18 Leadership at Noon

Lisa HerrTuesday, Sept. 26, 2017

Lisa Herr, CEO of the 7 Rivers Alliance
noon–1 p.m. 
Reinhart Center Board Room 107

Lisa Herr is the CEO of the 7 Rivers Alliance, a regional leadership council dedicated to fostering economic growth and community vitality in 14 counties of SW Wisconsin, SE Minnesota and NE iowa.  In this role, she leads a dynamic team that creates programs and services to benefit communities.  Currently, the team is completing the WISE Plan, a 10-year workforce plan for the region that has engaged over 200 business and community leaders.

Lisa has had an extensive career in workforce development and came to La Crosse in 2014.  Previous positions include Global Solutions Officer at Invista Performance Solutions, a higher education consulting organization that Lisa created with 5 colleges in Washington State.  She has also been an Executive Dean of Workforce Development at several colleges and started her career as a k-12 educator.

As a lifelong learner, Lisa has a Doctorate in Education from the University of Washington, a Master in Education from the University of Puget Sound and a Bachelor in Education from Western Washington University.

She resides in Coon Valley, Wisconsin with her husband Tom, 11 year old daughter Grace, and Bella, black lab as well as three cats: Tango, Crockett and Whisper.  Her spare time is dedicated to walking, hiking, cooking, gardening, home décor and actively participating in Rotary La Crosse and Rotary International. 

Barbara NickTuesday, Oct. 31, 2017

Barbara Nick, President and CEO of Dairyland Power
Brian RudeVice President of External and Member Relations of Dairyland Power
noon–1 p.m.

Reinhart Center Board Room 107

Barbara A. Nick, joined Dairyland Power Cooperative in December 2014 as President and CEO. Prior to Dairyland Barbara served in various leadership roles at Wisconsin Public Service/Integrys (now WEC). Past roles included: President of Minnesota Energy Resources, President of Michigan Gas Utility, President of Upper Peninsula Power, and Senior Vice President of Energy Delivery and Customer Service for WPSC.  She has over 36 years in the energy industry.

Under her leadership, Dairyland Power Cooperative has focused on resource diversification and sustainability. Dairyland’s solar investment doubled the solar generation in Wisconsin during 2016. The cooperative has also announced a variety of wind power purchase agreements.

An engaged community member, she has over 26 years of board service in various profit and non-profit boards. She served for over seven years as a director of Seventhwave (formally Energy Center of Wisconsin).  In September 2015, she was appointed for a six-year term to the State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB), which includes oversight of state funds valued at over $100 billion.  She also serves as a Board of Director for the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) Board and the La Crosse Chamber of Commerce/Executive Committee Boards. As an advocate of strong and principled leadership, Barbara is the author and editor of Lenses of Leadership, A Call to Action.

After attending Arizona State University and University of Wisconsin-Madison, Nick earned a bachelor’s degree in Communications and Business from University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and has completed Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program.

Barbara and her husband live in La Crosse and have 6 children and 11 grandchildren.  They share a hobby of teaching children about literacy and science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM) through their books and activities.  

Brian RudeBrian Rude is Vice President of External and Member Relations of Dairyland Power, based in La Crosse, Wisconsin.  Dairyland is a generation and transmission cooperative serving 600,000 consumers in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois.

Brian is responsible for government relations, community and member relations, communications, printing and graphics, administrative services and energy efficiency.  He also serves as a member of Dairyland’s Senior Management Team.

Brian has an extensive career background in politics and communications.  He served on the research staff of the Iowa and Wisconsin State Senates, and worked in the Corporate Communications Department at The Trane Company. 

In 1982, Brian was elected to the Wisconsin State Assembly and in 1984, to the Wisconsin State Senate.  On two occasions, he served as President of the Senate, from 1993-1996 and again in 1998.  After a 17-year career in public office, in 2000 he resigned from the Senate to begin his work at Dairyland.

He received his BA degree in history and political science from Luther College, Decorah, Iowa, and his MA in public administration from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Brian represents cooperatives on the Board of the Wisconsin Public Utility Institute in Madison, and is active in many community activities, including as a member of Lions and currently serving as President of the Wisconsin Historical Society and as a member of the Coon Valley Industrial Development Corporation, the Vesterheim Museum Board and River Bank Board.

Maria NordbergTuesday, Nov. 14, 2017

Maria Nordberg, Owner of Grounded Specialty Coffee and the Apothik Food Truck 
noon–1 p.m.
Reinhart Center Board Room 107


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