Young professionals making a vibrant future for Portage County

Ignite Young Professionals is a collaborative, energetic group dedicated to personal and professional development for all young adults connected to Portage County. Ignite provides the opportunity to develop leadership skills, connect with other young professionals, and learn about the people and places that make our community a great place to live, work, and play.

Latest Updates:

Ignite is a dynamic group whose aim is to engage the next generation of community leaders between the ages of 21 and 40 (or the sufficiently young-at-heart) who want to make a difference in their community.

The group focuses on developing and providing network development, social, and leadership opportunities for members as well as encouraging philanthropic and community involvement. Ignite strives to make Portage County a great place to live, work and play for all young professionals.

Check out our current events! 

For only $50, your Ignite Leadership Network of Portage County membership will provide you with the opportunity to visit local businesses and talk with the entrepreneurs who have built them, meet and network with your peers, as well as business leaders in the county, and get involved in your community.

Ignite members live and work throughout Central Wisconsin. Take a look at where our members work and the variety of positions they hold. Looking for an Ignite member near you? Start with our map … then join our LinkedIn group!

For Employers

Why is it so important for Portage County employers to support Ignite? Here are the top five reasons:

  1. Employee Loyalty: As employees feel more attached to an area through community involvement, they are more likely to stay in the area and with the same employer.
  2. Recruitment: Networking with current members can enrich the recruitment pool with leadership skills and other desirable traits.
  3. Increase Knowledge Base: Access to new ideas and resources can help your business become a stronger company internally and in the eyes of the surrounding area.
  4. Know the Human Resources Available: Companies have the opportunity to meet and network with the next generation of employees and be able to realistically gauge those who will be advancing in their careers.
  5. Peer-to-Peer Marketing: Members discuss where they work and what they do with each other at Ignite events. This is a way for other professionals to learn about your company from current employees.

Ask your employer to sponsor your membership! [Download Information]

Backstage Pass Events
See businesses and community organizations behind the scenes at Ignite Backstage Pass events. Learn what goes on inside Portage County’s best from food and brewing to politics and insurance. These events give members an opportunity to meet business leaders and learn what goes into their success while networking with fellow young professionals.

Bite with Ignite – formerly L3: Lunch, Learn, Lead Series
L3 programs are designed to be intimate roundtable discussions over lunch with area business and community leaders and are an opportunity for Ignite members to meet area leaders and hear their personal stories while engaging in a conversation about life, community and leadership.






Social & Networking Events
From speed networking to Holiday Jingle ‘n Mingle, Ignite members grow their connections while building relationships professionally and personally. These opportunities ensure a skilled workforce for a growing Portage County economy, while members enjoy time with peers.






Volunteer Opportunities
In addition to maintaining the Adopt-A-Highway cleanup on Cty HH three times per year, Ignite members select, plan and execute an annual service project. Past projects include the Born Learning Trail at Mead Park and a dog walking trail for volunteers and staff at the Humane Society of Portage County. With a diverse list of community service activities, members are able to find a cause that is tailored to fit their personal passions. Ignite encourages members to volunteer at community events throughout the year.


Ignite Advisory Board:

The Advisory Board is responsible for the overall decisions and function of Ignite. Give your input and help plan Ignite events…join a committee!

2019 Advisory Board

Kevin Kirschbaum, D1 Training

Marketing Chair
Nichole Wierzba, Sentry Insurance

Career Chair

Connect Chair
Hannah Testin, Pacelli Catholic Schools

Community Chair
Jeanna Trzebiatowski, APA

Membership Manager
Jenny Piotrowski, Eastbay

Hannah Meinholdt, Wildcard Corp.

Past President
Eric Dolski, Sentry Insurance

Want to learn more about joining a committee or the advisory board?

Email us! 


Sign up for events and membership at Eventbrite.

For additional information, please call 715-344-1940 or email

Committee Minutes