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Kathleen Gallagher (Right) Photo: Axios screenshot

The Midwest is looking for ways to develop more "disruptive innovation" in order to better compete globally and strengthen manufacturing, Kathleen Gallagher, Executive Director of the 5 Lakes Institute said at an Axios event on Thursday.

The big picture: Gallagher pointed to the industries in Milwaukee and throughout the Midwest that produced much of the equipment that the U.S. used to win World War II as inspiration for Midwesterners to move forward. "We need to pull this region up. That's our challenge of a lifetime right now," she added.

  • "We supply a lot of the brains that keep the coasts running and a lot of the materials. So what we need to do is coalesce that more here." Gallagher said.
  • "This is the industrial base of the country. Together we can compete globally, we do compete globally."

Go deeper

Updated Aug 18, 2020 - Axios Events

Watch: The future of employability in Milwaukee

DNC week: On Tuesday August 18, Axios Cities author Kim Hart and politics and White House editor Margaret Talev hosted a conversation on Milwaukee's economic recovery amidst the coronavirus, featuring Rep. Gwen Moore, 5 Lakes Institute Executive Director Kathleen Gallagher and Green Bay Packers CEO Mark Murphy.

Kathleen Gallagher discussed regional economic development around Milwaukee and how to reverse the brain drain from the Midwest to the coasts.

  • On how to keep local talent in the Midwest: "A lot of people on the coasts come from the Midwest. We supply a lot of the brains that keep the coast running, and a lot of the materials. So what we need to do is coalesce that more here [in the Midwest] and figure out how have more...disruptive commercialization."

Mark Murphy highlighted the relationship between the Green Bay Packers and their local community and discussed Titletown Tech, a startup incubator partnership between the Packers and Microsoft.

  • On how The Packers work to economically support the local community: "[The Packers] don't have a wealthy, deep pocketed owner...the local community owns a team. And so for us, a high priority is, number one, making sure the team stays in Green Bay, but also making sure that Green Bay can support an NFL team."
  • On his hopes for the startup world in Green Bay: "Our hope is that we find the next Google...and have a company that really takes off and really helps the local Green Bay.

Rep. Gwen Moore discussed how broadband inequity disproportionately impacts Black and Latinx students and the needed investment in infrastructure to reinvigorate the local economy.

  • "The yellow bus of today is broadband and in Wisconsin about 6% of the population does not have broadband, and if you look at the Black community, it's twice that."
  • "We can't go back to ignoring our need to rebuild our infrastructure...Some sort of infrastructure program where the jobs can't be shifted overseas is precisely the kind of initiative that would help bail Milwaukeeans out of the economic doldrums that we're experiencing."

Thank you Microsoft for sponsoring this event.

10 mins ago - Sports

NFL to end race-based testing in concussion settlements

Photo: Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

The National Football League (NFL) on Wednesday reached an agreement with former players to end the controversial practice of race-based adjustments in dementia testing, AP reports.

Why it matters: The deal, which must still be approved by a judge, comes amid a broader discussion of racial inequities in health care.

Parents in Michigan, Virginia sue AG over action on school board threats

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland during an October news conference in Mexico City. Photo: Hector Vivas/Getty Images

A group of parents in Michigan and Virginia accused Attorney General Merrick Garland in a federal lawsuit Tuesday of trying to "criminalize" free speech by directing law enforcement to review threats against school staff.

Why it matters: The lawsuit, filed by the conservative American Freedom Law Center on behalf of the parents in two school districts, accuses Garland of seeking to suppress free speech in his memorandum directing federal authorities to counter the threats spike.