I want to share with you some important news items regarding the future of the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (WISTAX).
First, at the end of December, our president for the past 25 years, Todd Berry, will be retiring. The WISTAX board and staff will miss him and his steadfast, enthusiastic commitment to informing the public and the press about Wisconsin state and local government.
Second, Todd will be succeeded by Rob Henken, who is currently president of the Public Policy Forum (PPF), as part of a merger of our two organizations. WISTAX Research Director Dale Knapp will continue in his same role, heading the new, larger research team with offices in both Madison and Milwaukee.
Because the mission of the Public Policy Forum and the Taxpayers Alliance are so similar—providing the same kind of independent, nonpartisan policy research in Milwaukee that the Taxpayers Alliance does statewide—the boards at both WISTAX and PPF saw this change as a rare opportunity to combine the strengths and staffs of both organizations into one group that will continue our respective traditions.
Those traditions are deep and well respected. The merger, which will be implemented in the months ahead, combines nearly 190 years of shared excellence and expertise. The result will be one of the nation’s premier independent government research organizations—truly an exciting prospect for all involved.
Change may be ahead. But what will not change is our commitment to clear, unbiased policy research on the critical issues facing Wisconsin and its people. That mission has always guided WISTAX – and PPF – and will remain evident in everything the new, larger and stronger organization will do.
In fact, you are likely to see little change. We will continue to publish our newsletters, magazines, and other publications as we have in the past. In the months ahead, you are likely to see even more expert analysis from the combined talents of a larger research staff presented in new and more accessible ways.
Information further describing the merger, a press release, and an FAQ document will soon be available on our website.
Todd and our entire board of directors join me in expressing our profound thanks for your years of loyal and generous support. Additional details will be forthcoming in the weeks ahead. In the meantime, feel free to contact me or Todd with any questions you might have.
Very gratefully and sincerely yours,
Chair, Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance Board of Directors