A well-respected business and community leader has become the first-ever Executive-in-Residence for UW-Green Bay’s Austin E. Cofrin School of Business.Tim Weyenberg, past CEO and current Executive Chair of the Board of Directors for Foth Companies, is in the early stages of his tenure in the newly created role. He is working with University stakeholders to determine how he can be most effective, and plans to have a more consistent presence on campus — including regular office hours and more — later this semester.
Weyenberg’s role — and his leadership — promises to make a difference, said Cofrin School of Business Director Lucy Arendt.
“Tim is especially well-connected, knowledgeable, super energetic,” Arendt said. “He’s got a great reputation in the community as a leader, and also in terms of his connections to the campus. He’s very committed — genuinely interested in strengthening the relationships between the campus and community. So he’s a perfect choice for this.”
Weyenberg spent 28 years with Foth, 16 as CEO, before retiring in March 2013. His extensive community involvement has included leadership roles with the New North, Greater Green Bay Community Foundation and Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce. At UW-Green Bay, he has been actively involved with the business program, the Environmental Management and Business Institute (EMBI), Phuture Phoenix program and more. This current opportunity, Weyenberg said, is an exciting one.
“When (Arendt) explained what they were trying to accomplish, with enhancing the connection between the School of Business and the business community,” Weyenberg said, “it seemed to me this role provided a huge opportunity to enhance that School of Business vision of being knowledge-seekers in Northeastern Wisconsin.
“I think we know there’s a lot going on — but there’s also a lot to do.”
Those tasks include establishing a Cofrin School of Business advisory board, a process with which Weyenberg will be deeply involved. He also will advise faculty on curriculum, work one-on-one with students, guest lecture and help with things like mock interviews.
Made possible with funds from the University’s largest-ever academic gift — $5.5 million from the Cofrin family — Weyenberg’s tenure will last one to two years. And while his business acumen is second to none, Arendt said, Weyenberg also will show students how to be a well-rounded and contributing member of a community — a message, she says, that is critical.
“What a tremendous role model for our students — he’s the whole package,” Arendt said. “He’s not just somebody who has done well at work. Students sometimes, they get a lot of questions about, what are they going to be doing to make a living, and that sort of thing.
“It’s not about what are you doing to make a living, but what are you doing to make a life? And I think he’s a great role model for that.”