Concordia University Wisconsin has hired a former executive of Kapco and the Lakeshore Chinooks, Dean Rennicke, as its newest member of the advancement team.
Rennicke began his role as vice president of the Concordia University Wisconsin Foundation on Monday, May 22. He officially ended his positions as vice president and general manager of the Lakeshore Chinooks and vice president of marketing for Kapco, Inc. on May 12, but has said he will be available to the collegiate summer baseball team in an advisory capacity.
In his new role, Rennicke will focus on advancing Concordia’s athletic teams with an eye towards raising funds for future new facilities. More immediately, he will work with the rest of the advancement department on the campaign for Concordia’s new academic building, the Robert W. Plaster Free Enterprise Center.
Concordia announced last fall its plans to erect the new building, which will house its Batterman School of Business and serve as the central space on campus from which free market principles will be developed and advanced. The building will also serve as a space for cross-disciplinary student collaboration and will be a resource to the community.
“Dean’s integrity, vast experience and alignment with the mission of Concordia made him a perfect fit for this new position,” said Rev. Dr. Roy Peterson, vice president of advancement. “I’m confident his reputation in the community will help raise the profile of the university and allow us to continue to move Concordia forward.”
A Milwaukee native who was raised in Mequon, Rennicke has had the opportunity to visit the Mequon campus countless times and has been a friend of the university for decades, said Peterson. With Kapco Park located on the campus grounds, his work with the Lakeshore Chinooks kept him especially connected in recent years. Two of his children also graduated from Concordia in 2016 and 2017.
“It’s the right time,” said Rennicke. “I wanted to be able to use my skillset to impact the most people in a positive way, and now is the time for Concordia to be that place. The vision of the leadership and the mission of the university align well with my values.
“I wanted to leave Kapco on a high note,” Rennicke continued. “I’m grateful for my time there and remain a supporter and friend of Jim (Kacmarcik, Kapco president), Kapco and the Chinooks.”
Rennicke had served six years as VP of Marketing for Kapco and VP/GM for the Chinooks. He began his professional career as a minor league pitcher and coach after he was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers during his junior year at UW-Madison. Seven years later, after multiple arm surgeries, he returned to Milwaukee and joined the Milwaukee Brewers front office, where he spent 15 seasons in various capacities, including vice president of corporate and ticket sales. Before stepping into his role with Kapco, he joined the Journal Broadcast Group’s radio networks selling the Packers and Brewers Radio Broadcasts.
He and his wife, Margaret, live in Grafton and attend First Immanuel Lutheran Church in Cedarburg. The two have three children: Ben, Elizabeth and Abby.
— This story is written by Kali Thiel, director of university communications for Concordia University Wisconsin and Ann Arbor. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 262-243-2149.
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