Workforce Central

South Wood County, 

Workforce Central aims to transform workforce development in this rural region by implementing a dual customer strategy that aims to achieve the ultimate outcome of everyone in greater south Wood County who wants to work, has ample opportunities to prepare for and secure a family sustaining job, and advance in a career over time. Current and prospective workers conveniently access a comprehensive, seamless array of education, training and support services, provided by a strong partnership of employers, educators and service providers that take shared responsibility for a healthy workforce, economy and job market.


Funding Collaborative Accomplishments
  • Pathways: Prepares low skilled job seekers to access the career ladder by completing accelerated GED program and link to next level skill training and employment. Partners include Mid-State Technical College and Wood County Human Services.
  • Food Manufacturing Science: Prepares unemployed job seekers for careers in food manufacturing. Partners include the Workforce Central CEO Peer Council, North Central Wisconsin Workforce Development Board, Labor Education Training Center and Mid-State Technical College.
  • Advanced Manufacturing Leadership Initiative: Prepares current and future manufacturing supervisors for career advancement. Partners include the Workforce Central CEO Peer Council and Mid-State Technical College.
Cumulative Match Funding To Date


System Change Accomplishments

Fourth Quarter 2011

Educating New Leadership-Update

Kelly Lucas participated in the Rural Wealth Creation Conference hosted by the Ford Foundation and USDA Rural Development.  The NFWS focus on the dual customer was discussed as a way to build sustainable rural communities.

As a follow up to meetings with WHEDA and USDA Rural Development, Kelly Lucas presented at the USDA Rural Development Conference in Wausau.  The presentation focused on the broad efforts of the Community Foundation as a local place-based convener.  Special emphasis was placed on our role as a NFWS site and the dual customer role of workforce partnerships.

As part of this conference and as a follow-up to the Rural Wealth Creation Conference, Kelly Lucas and Jennifer Riggenbach were invited to meet with USDA Under Secretary Dallas Tonsager, USDA Wisconsin State Director Stan Grusznski and Wisconsin Housing Economic Development Authority Executive Director, Wyman Winston.  The conversation focused on potential opportunities for local philanthropy to co-invest with USDA and WHEDA at a local level, building support for businesses, entrepreneurs and job seekers.  Food Manufacturing was highlighted in the discussion.  We are currently exploring ways to leverage the manufacturing partnership as a focus for new collaborative investments.

Workforce Central hosted a community meet and greet with Congressman Ron Kind.  Redistricting will put the majority of the south Wood County area in Congressman Kind’s district.  The Workforce Central funders collaborative, employer partners, and partners highlighted the Workforce Central dual customer effort and success to date.