Friday, October 16, 2020

#FridayGiving: An elephant ton of excitement at the Milwaukee County Zoo

Head over to the Milwaukee County Zoo to check out resident African elephants, Brittany, Ruth and Belle, at the Adventure Africa Elephant Exhibit. The exhibit is thanks in part to a $750,000 gift to the Zoological Society of Milwaukee from the We Energies Foundation. 


The exhibit features a 1.6-acre outdoor habitat, a 20,000-square-foot Elephant Care Center, individual stalls for training and elephant health care, and various indoor and outdoor enrichment activities to keep the elephants happy and healthy.

Zoo visitors are able to view the elephant exhibit and the new multispecies hoofstock exhibit from the We Energies Foundation Elephant Overlook — a second-floor terrace on the southeast corner of the elephant care center. The We Energies Foundation African Forest Garden adds beauty between the two exhibit areas. 




“The We Energies Foundation focuses on creating a brighter future for the communities we serve, and the zoo is a wonderful example of an organization that makes a positive community impact,” said Beth Straka, vice president — We Energies Foundation and senior vice president — corporate communications and investor relations at WEC Energy Group.

The Zoological Society of Milwaukee, a nonprofit that helps fundraise and support the Milwaukee County Zoo, continues to fundraise for their Window to the Wild campaign to complete Adventure Africa. Many of the African animals (impalas, hippos, rhinos, zebras and bongos) will live near one another in new habitats that look and feel expansive and open. Learn more about Adventure Africa.

#FridayGiving

Since the early 1980s, We Energies has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in communities across the state.

Read more about our yearlong effort to highlight some of the incredible organizations we support here.

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to make sure you don’t miss any #FridayGiving posts.


Friday, October 9, 2020

#FridayGiving: Literacy Services helps adults head back to school, improve their lives

When you hear the phrase “back to school” you usually picture little kids heading back into the classroom after summer break. But for Literacy Services of Wisconsin, “back to school” means helping adult learners break down barriers and explore new opportunities for themselves and their families.


We Energies is proud to support Literacy Services as they celebrate 55 years in our community. The organization provides motivated adults with access to quality basic education and skills training so they can improve their lives and strengthen our community. Last year, volunteers and staff helped more than 1,000 adult learners build literacy skills, improve their English and earn high school credentials.



To learn more about Literacy Services’ impact and how you can get involved, visit their website

#FridayGiving

Since the early 1980s, We Energies has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in communities across the state. 

Read more about our yearlong effort to highlight some of the incredible organizations we support here

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to make sure you don’t miss any #FridayGiving posts. 

Friday, September 25, 2020

#FridayGiving: We Energies’ Public Service Building taking part in virtual Doors Open

Like many Milwaukee organizations, Historic Milwaukee had a tough choice to make this year: cancel their annual Doors Open event or find a way to adapt. As a proud sponsor of the event, we’re pleased to report they chose the latter — and starting Saturday, Sept. 26, we’ll be taking part in a virtual Doors Open 2020.

In years past, historic buildings have opened their doors to the public as part of a citywide celebration of Milwaukee’s architecture. This year, more than 60 buildings are part of the online festivities, running through Sunday, Oct. 11.

We’re excited to showcase some of the incredible, historic features of the Public Service Building (PSB), our 115-year-old headquarters. Visitors to the PSB webpage will learn that construction began on the building in 1902. It was designed as a central station for The Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Co. (TMER&L), a predecessor of We Energies. 

You can still see many of the beautiful neoclassical details from the outside, as well as the replica green doors where rail cars used to enter and exit the building. We’ve posted plenty of pictures of the inside, too. 

To learn more and take part in this year’s virtual event, visit the Doors Open website.

#FridayGiving

Since the early 1980s, We Energies has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in communities across the state. 

Read more about our yearlong effort to highlight some of the incredible organizations we support here

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to make sure you don’t miss any #FridayGiving posts. 

Friday, September 18, 2020

#FridayGiving: Our support helps the Addiction Resource Council teach kids to say no

Parents know the transition from middle school to high school can be tough, but the Addiction Resource Council (ARC) in Waukesha County is working to make sure 7th through 9th graders have the skills they need to make good decisions. The We Energies Foundation is proud to support their mission through the Resist the Influence program.



As part of the program, trained professionals teach kids how to recognize negative outside influences and the impact those influences can have on their lives. The goal is to prevent the students from trying e-cigarettes, alcohol and drugs. The program teaches students to make decisions that reflect who they are, not who someone is pressuring them to be.



To learn more about the Addiction Resource Council, visit their website.

#FridayGiving

Since the early 1980s, We Energies has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in communities across the state.

Read more about our yearlong effort to highlight some of the incredible organizations we support here

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to make sure you don’t miss any #FridayGiving posts.

Friday, September 11, 2020

Educators continue learning with help from the We Energies Foundation

Students are just getting back to school, but many teachers have been working hard throughout the year, continuing their education to prepare their students for success. That’s where the Milwaukee Teacher Education Center (MTEC) comes in. The not-for-profit was designed to recruit, support and retain teachers and school leaders in urban settings. 

Teachers gather for training in February 2020


The We Energies Foundation is a proud sponsor of the organization, as it provides teachers with continuous training to help the next generation succeed. Its goal is to increase learning and close achievement gaps through effective teaching.

The current health crisis has taken a toll on students and teachers alike. Although the center provides many different options for educators, MTEC is offering educators training and tools to support students impacted by trauma during the coronavirus pandemic.

To learn more about MTEC and its incredible mission, visit its website.

#FridayGiving

Since the early 1980s, We Energies has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in communities across the state.

Read more about our yearlong effort to highlight some of the incredible organizations we support here.

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to make sure you don’t miss any #FridayGiving posts.

Friday, September 4, 2020

Put energy efficiency on your back-to-school list

Back-to-school looks different for a lot of families this year, as many children are still learning at home. We put together some energy-efficient lesson plans that will help you and your stay-at-home students manage energy costs.




Show them this bright idea: Turn off lights when no one needs them. Use dimmer switches on indoor lights and switch to LED bulbs. They use up to 75% less energy than standard incandescent bulbs.

Tell them they have the power: Power strips that is. Many electronics consume energy even when they aren’t being used. Often called energy vampires, these devices can cost up to $100 a year. Plugging chargers, computers and gaming equipment into a power strip lets you turn them off with one switch. Better yet, use a smart power strip. It turns off automatically when devices are not in use.

Soak up knowledge … and savings: The average household spends about $300 a year on water heating costs. Lowering your water heater thermostat to 120 degrees is an easy do-it-yourself lesson to show your kids and help manage energy costs.

Keep minds open and the refrigerator door closed: Did you know we open our refrigerators on average 33 times per day? Minimize the number of times you open your refrigerator door. An open door allows warm, moist air in, which makes the compressor work harder. Pick a snack ahead of time, so you don’t leave the door open too long.

Follow a dress code: As the weather gets cooler, throw on a sweater, rather than cranking up the heat. Better yet, install a programmable thermostat, so no one needs to touch that dial.

It’s never too soon to teach your kids about energy efficiency. For more easy tips visit our website



Wednesday, September 2, 2020

From the archives: We Energies homefront efforts during WWII

Companies nationwide played crucial roles in supporting the Allies throughout World War II, and We Energies was no exception. We Energies — and its employees — had a hand in the ultimate victory, which happened officially on Sept. 2, 1945. 

At Wisconsin Electric Power Co., which later became We Energies, the Public Service Building in downtown Milwaukee was a venue for USO dances, draftee orientation, award ceremonies and other events in support of the war effort. The company participated in the drive to find and recycle usable scrap for military use, and more than 3,000 tons were turned in during 1942 alone.
Although the company participated in government programs to conserve fuel, manpower and materials, and customers were asked to conserve energy, war-time industrial demand for electricity skyrocketed. The system’s combined output more than doubled between 1938 and 1944. Heavy industries accounted for most of the growth.

The company had transit lines then that played a vital role too. The interurban system and trolley buses transported draftees to downtown Milwaukee, where they connected with the train to Fort Sheridan or the Great Lakes naval station for deployment. And as automobile production was suspended and gasoline and tires were rationed, a growing number of factory workers depended on trolleys and buses day and night. Passenger traffic jumped from 218 million riders in 1938 to 428 million in 1944. Signs on company street cars urged citizens to buy war bonds. 

Sadly, sixteen of the 1,014 Wisconsin Electric Power Co. employees who were deployed were lost to the war.