July 11, 2016
Renae Mitchell will become the director of The Fort Atkinson Club effective July 11. She comes to The FAC with extensive experience running several 501(c) 3 organizations. Formerly serving as executive director of The Prairie Enthusiasts Land Trust and the University of Wisconsin – Rock County Foundation, Mitchell is an experienced grant-writer and fund-raiser and has worked in marketing, public relations and event coordination. She has also been a camp administrator and teacher.
Renae Mitchell is a graduate of several training and management seminars for executive directors. She earned a Certification in Museum Studies through UW-Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Public Museum. She has been active in historical preservation with the Geneva Lake Conservancy, Whitewater Federation of Women’s Clubs and the Historical Societies of both Whitewater and Palmyra. She says, “I am thrilled with the beautiful restoration and renovation of the historic Fort Atkinson Club and am excited to further advance its important role as a community center and enchanting event venue.”
Mitchell notes that she enjoys working with people of all ages, having done so at camps, parks and museums. Most recently, she served as program manager of a homeless shelter where she was responsible for program and building operations, recruiting and training staff and volunteers, and helping residents find ways to improve their lives. She and her husband own Elderberry Acres Farm, where they grow their own vegetables, elderberries and poultry. In the past they have hosted Farm Fun Days, Bluegrass Festivals and participated in the Walworth County Tourism Bureau’s Fall Harvest Festivals.
Mitchell earned a B.S. degree with a dual major in Science Education and Regional Planning and a minor in communications from UW-Green Bay. She holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in Geography from UW-Milwaukee. Mitchell is fluent in Spanish and served her country as a U.S. Peace Corp volunteer in Honduras. She conducted research in Mexico and was the recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship to Peru, Argentina and Brazil. She taught courses at the college level for many years, at Valparaiso University, UW-Whitewater, Carroll University and George Williams College of Aurora University.
Mitchell notes that she and her husband have spent time at various events in Fort Atkinson and she looks forward to getting to better know the community as she takes on her duties at The Fort Atkinson Club. “I know Fort is a vibrant community with many exciting initiatives and wonderfully supportive people. I hope to meet all of our FAC members soon. I’m enthused about working with our board and committees to continue providing excellent customer service and innovative programming.”
FAC Board President Rachel Nelan, notes, “Our board looks forward to helping expand Renae’s connections in Fort Atkinson. Her track record of accomplishment, in all aspects of running community-based organizations like The Fort Atkinson Club, makes her a wonderful choice.”
The mission of The Fort Atkinson Club is to build community through partnerships to connect, cooperate, learn, and celebrate. Located at 211 South Water Street East, and re-established in 2015, the Fort Atkinson Club is an independent, multi-purpose, nonprofit center that serves the community, neighbors, and visitors of Fort Atkinson, Wisc. Envisioned as an historic downtown hub along the Rock River to provide people of all ages and backgrounds a place to come together through education, arts, wellness, business, community events, and other fun activities — while showcasing the history, culture, and heritage of the area. We are developing a wide variety of ways to nurture and support our vibrant community and offer many opportunities for others to participate in positive collaboration.