Batter up!

Headshot images of both speakers.From left, Dan Kapanke, UWL alumnus and owner of the La Crosse Loggers, and Andrew Grobe, Parks and Recreation Department manager for Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, are speakers for the Spring Economic Speaker Series at UW-La Crosse.

Economics, sports connections to be highlighted in speaker series

Two speakers will share their career paths and the connections between sports and economics during a Spring Economic Speaker Series at UW-La Crosse. The events are free and open to all.

UWL alumnus and owner of the La Crosse Loggers, Dan Kapanke, will kick off the series at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 7, in 1300 Centennial Hall.

The series aims to connect students with speakers from a variety of backgrounds in economics and sports, with the goal of bridging classroom material with real-world experiences to better prepare students for their future careers.

Kapanke earned two degrees from UWL: a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1975 and a master’s in education in 1985. Aside from being the founding owner of the La Crosse Loggers, Kapanke has been an active member of the Wisconsin Legislature. He was elected to the Wisconsin Senate twice, first in 2004 and again in 2008, representing the 32nd District until 2011.

Parks and Rec director speaks Feb. 21

Andrew Grobe, Parks and Recreation Department manager for Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, will share how a love for outdoors turned into a career at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 21, in 1300 Centennial Hall.

“I was raised to love and respect the outdoors, and I have been lucky enough to make a career out of it,” says Grobe.

Grobe received a bachelor’s degree in recreation management from Lock Haven University in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania, and a master’s degree in recreation management from California University of Pennsylvania. He settled in the Pittsburgh area where he oversaw the Allegheny Parks and Recreation Department. The county oversees nine different county parks covering more than 12,000 acres around Pittsburgh.

About the series

Adam Hoffer, UWL associate professor of economics, received a $400,000 Wisconsin Initiative for Economic Research grant in 2016 to start the Economic Speaker Series. The grant funds speakers and other initiatives through the 2017-18 academic year. The award aims to increase exposure to economics at UWL and throughout La Crosse with regional economic events focused on topics from basic economics to public policy discussion. It also funds a weekly economic discussion group at UWL and economic research projects. The grant is from the Charles Koch Foundation, which aims to promote academic openness and rigorous economic inquiry. Hoffer is seeking funding opportunities to extend this kind of experiential curriculum in the future.