MIKE MARSCH, Managing Director
I’m Mike Marsch President of Wisconsin Property Taxpayers. I came to work for WPT on October 10, 1987.
I was hired as a member representative. When I started with the organization, we had less than 1,500 members. Today thanks to all the hard work of many member representatives WPT is Wisconsin’s largest taxpayer organization with over 18,000 business, farm and homeowner members. We are a force to be reckoned with when it comes to taxation and spending.
In November of 2011, my wife Kim and began managing the organization from Nancy Dohm, who operated the organization for about 10 months after the passing of her husband Tom Dohm who founded the organization in 1985. As you visit through the archives of this website, you will realize how instrumental WPT has been in all of the significant taxation and spending policy our great state of Wisconsin has adopted into law saving hundreds of millions of dollars over the years for Wisconsin taxpayers.
I am proud of the hard work and dedication of our past and present staff. No other organization in Wisconsin works harder to serve the interests of ALL taxpayers in pursuit of fair taxation and fiscal responsibility. I also want to thank our 18,000 members who stand in the gap with us every day. Without them, we would be just another fading voice in the wind. Instead we are a chorus of voices standing united for fairness and reform, which is heard loud and clear.
JOHN JACOBSON, Government & Member Relations Director
John Jacobson joined the WPT team as Government & Member Relations Director in 2015. He has worked in both local and state government, often serving as a resource and first point of contact for taxpayers with concerns or questions for their elected officials.
In 2015, he left his position with a large broadcast corporation, where his chief responsibilities were to work with businesses to achieve their advertising and marketing goals through broadcast and digital solutions.
In addition to representing and advocating for WPT's policy positions in the State Capitol, John works with a multitude of WPT members from around the state. From small business owners and family farmers, to homeowners and individuals alike, John assists our members in navigating both local and state government regulation and processes.
John also collaborates and liaises with other statewide organizations, and serves as the primary media contact for WPT.
With a very keen interest in public policy from an early age, John often convinced relatives to attend political rallies with him as a child, and convinced his parents annually to place yard signs on their property more than a decade before he could legally cast a ballot.
John is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and attended Catholic schools from kindergarten through high school. In his free time, he volunteers at a local meal program, and as an adult literacy tutor. He attributes his love for community service and volunteerism to both his family and various instructors and teachers in his life.
KIM MARSCH, Administrative & Communications Director
My role within WPT is to support our lobbying effort through the creation of communication tools such as website development, newsletter production and public forums. We as personnel know the great job we do for our member’s every day, but if the member doesn’t realize it, then we have not communicated adequately the seriousness of the issues or the opportunity presented to make a change in the way government works. A lobbying organization is only as strong and powerful as the membership it attempts to engage in the process this change.
Our Membership Representatives also rely on me to perform many of the day-to-day functions of the organization, assisting them in servicing our members, and of course the mundane administrative work that accounts for the payables and receivables of WPT. The bottom-line for me: I do whatever I can to make the organization better and more functional for our members.
LAURIE RAUK, Business Analyst
Laurie Rauk joined the WPT team as a Business Analyst and Database Admin Specialist in December of 2015. Laurie is responsible for technical support to the WPT team and implementing organizational goals into technical solutions to provide a competitive edge for today’s market.
Prior to her role as an Business Analyst, Laurie worked for many years on various IT projects. Her professional experience covers serving as a lead in a major database server transition project , migrating a statewide immunization registry into a new web framework, developing a web-based solution for the transit of medical tests in central Wisconsin, and supporting various communication initiatives within the health care industry. Professional interests include Information Architecture and Data Modeling.
Laurie was born and raised in southern Wisconsin. In 1990, she relocated to northern Wisconsin as her family has deep roots in the Chippewa Valley area. She holds an Associate Degree in Computer Science - Systems Analyst and has studied with Lakeland University with a concentration in Business and Marketing.
DONOVAN DOLPH, Agriculture Representative Manager
Donovan grew up in Fillmore County, Nebraska . Even though he did not grow up on the farm, his grandparents and many aunts and uncles were farmers, both dairy and cash crop, and spent many years of his youth working on farms. He had many years in the private sector working with the Pillsbury Company were he had daily contact with the farm regarding grain handling, storage, fertilizer and chemical application. Donovan now resides on an acreage near Arpin, Wisconsin and is enjoying his opportunity to be on the farm daily and discussing issues with some of the nicest people in the state of Wisconsin, the farmer. He enjoys tying flies and fly fishing and riding motorcycle when the weather is permitting.
KEITH SCHWALBE, Business Member Representative
Keith enjoys meeting members and new members in Northeast Wisconsin. He holds a Bachelor's degree from UW-Oshkosh. Keith grew up in Sheboygan, and now lives in Oshkosh,with his wife, Wendy. They are the proud parents of three daughters, Kayla, Katie, and Karley. Keith brings experience from diverse jobs background. He has great enthusiasm for WPT. He spends spare time with family, and also enjoys fishing, camping, and outdoor pursuits.
MIKE PAYNE, Agriculture Member Representative
Mike is very excited to join WPT as an Agriculture Member Representative for the East Central Region. After working in the banking industry for the past 20 years, specializing in the Ag and Agri-business sectors, he is proud to assume this new role and continue to be a strong voice in promoting the best interests of our farming communities.
Having grown up on the family farm in North Central Ohio, Mike’s passion for agriculture was instilled at a very early age. Even though he chose a different career path primarily due to the 80’s farm crisis, he has remained actively engaged in the Ag industry. Whether as a “trusted advisor” for many farm clients, through state banking associations – agricultural legislative committee, serving on an Ag Advisory Committee at local universities, or simply as a fellow land owner.
Mike received a Bachelor of Arts in Business Management from Cleveland State University and also attended Graduate School of Banking in Boulder, CO. He resides in Windsor, WI with his girlfriend Becky and enjoys spending time in the outdoors taking advantage of Wisconsin’s bountiful hunting and fishing opportunities, as well as being an avid sports fan.
CHUCK KNOWER, Business Member Representative
I grew up on a family farm in rural Viroqua, Wisconsin. Throughout my life and my career, I have witnessed first-hand the vital role that farming and small business/manufacturing plays in Wisconsin’s communities, not only in our past, but also for our future economic success and growth.
I currently live just south of Eau Claire with my wife and four children and enjoy spending time fishing and boating with my family. I am very fortunate that my wife shares my passion for fishing which allows us the opportunity to spend time together unwinding while we wet a line.
My career path has allowed me to work for farmers, small business owners and even large international companies. These experiences have given a very thorough understanding of how important each business or manufacturer can be. They are vital to each of the communities they serve, locally, on a state level, and even nationally or internationally.
I feel blessed to have the opportunity to work with an organization that allows me to help lend a voice to so many of Wisconsin’s crucial assets in the business and manufacturing sector of our economy. It takes a very special kind of individual to start and run a successful business, and I take it as a matter of personal pride to help support them through WPT’s efforts in Madison.
PAUL ROZESKI, Business Member Representative
Paul has lived in Wisconsin most of his life. Working jobs through high school, UW-Whitewater, and an online M.B.A., he has seen business from many different perspectives. On the hard work side of being an employee, he has held jobs including manufacturing and landscaping. On the high risk side of business ownership, he spent a year launching a startup and over nine years an independent contractor and small business owner. He has seen the issues both sides face and the different struggles to succeed.
His mission is to help the hard working underdog get ahead. Personally, he has volunteered for organizations like St. Vincent de Paul, Pregnancy Helpline Sharing Center, Parish Council and various soup kitchens. Professionally, he has regularly worked to be a connector for business professionals different networking groups, meetups, & associations, and sees WPT as a great resource to make improvements in their business and influence how the legislature impacts their business.
Paul currently lives in Madison with his wife Abbie and their five kids. They enjoy seeing all parts of Wisconsin by attending Packer, Badger and Brewer games, visiting family in New Richmond, Medford, Coloma & Milwaukee, and going to the lake in Eagle River. They also enjoy camping trips to visit National Parks, Monuments, and other landmarks. Paul enjoys watching good television, reading, coaching/attending his kids activities, and running more than cleaning gutters or writing bios.
JOHN PAKALA, Agriculture Member Representative
Having grown up on and around farms and farmers, John learned at a young age the value of hard work. Whether it was through the many hours spent on his grandmothers pickle farm picking pickles, helping a neighbor clean a barn or running through corn fields with his six brothers - John was raised up with a strong passion and love for the land and farms of Wisconsin. He is proud to be able to serve Wisconsin farmers as a Member Representative with WPT. John’s extensive background in sales and marketing in the food and wine industry, including managing a winery and vineyards, allows him to talk farm issues with consumers and consumer issues with farmers. Helping to bridge the gap between farmers and consumers.
John is a graduate of Thomas More College with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. It was at this college where he met his wife, Meg. They live happily with their four children in Brillion, WI. They enjoy day trips to Lake Michigan, biking, and family grill outs. It’s their dream to one day have a farm of their own that they can pass on to their children. John is also an outdoor enthusiast and a die hard Packer fan.
ROB STEARNS, Agriculture Member Representative
Rob grew up in the country just outside of Bloomer. His first job was working for the neighbor farmers baling hay and doing chores. His dad farmed for many years and still helps quite a few of the neighbors out. His father’s example taught Rob how to have a good work ethic. After working all types of construction jobs through his teenage years, Rob went to college in MN where he met his wife, Heather, and graduated with a Youth Ministries major. He also has a graduate degree in Computer Networking & Management.
During college and for years after he was a foreman for a landscaping company where he applied his work ethic and learned the value of great customer service.
Rob now lives in Eau Claire with his wife and three daughters.
Rob is ready to build relationships and represent his members well.
Some of his passions are spending time with his girls, hiking, biking and generally anything outdoors. Also he has a passion for Youth Ministries and has spent more than 10 years teaching and leading teens in the church he attends. He enjoys most sports and is a committed Packer fan even though his wife and one of his daughters are hardcore Vikings fans.