Board of Trustees
The SWIB Board of Trustees consists of nine members meeting specific membership requirements under section 15.76 of the statutes. Trustees have a fiduciary responsibility to act solely in the best interest of the funds under management. They appoint the executive director and the director of internal audit. Trustee responsibilities include establishing asset allocation, investment guidelines, and performance benchmarks. Members of the Board of Trustees are:
Chair, public member
David Stein is executive vice president and head of consumer and business banking for Green Bay-based Associated Banc-Corp, the largest bank holding company headquartered in Wisconsin. He earned his bachelor’s degree in finance and economics from St. Cloud State University and a Masters of Management degree from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Business at Northwestern University with concentrations in finance and marketing.
Vice-Chair & Secretary, Public Member
Barbara Nick is the retired president and CEO of Dairyland Power Cooperative, a utility company based in La Crosse, Wis. She has over 30 years-experience in the electric and gas industry. Additionally, she has over 25 years of board service in energy, health care and community. Barbara is also the founder and CEO of Catto Enterprises, LLC, where she provides business and executive development services in the energy and manufacturing industries. She is a communications and business graduate from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. She also completed Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program.
Esther Ancel is an emeritus professor of finance in the Lubar School of Business Administration at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Her areas of research and teaching are in investments and corporate finance. She is a member of the Department of Employee Trust Funds' Teachers Retirement Board. Currently she is treasurer of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation and serves on its finance and investment boards. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and she holds a PhD in finance from the University of Texas-Austin.
Secretary of the Department of Administration
Joel Brennan was selected as the Secretary of the Department of Administration by Gov. Tony Evers and began his role on January 2019. Before his appointment, Joel served as president and chief executive officer of Discovery World in Milwaukee for 2007-2019. Prior to that, he served as the head of Milwaukee’s Redevelopment Authority. Joel also served as vice president of development and government affairs for the Greater Milwaukee Convention & Visitors Bureau (now Visit Milwaukee). Early in his career, he also worked in government relations at Miller Brewing Company. Joel has a bachelor’s degree in English from Marquette University. He was selected as a Harris Fellow at the University of Chicago and earned a master’s degree in public policy from the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy.
Mark Doll retired from a 40-year career with The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company. In his recent role, he served as executive vice president and chief investment officer where he was responsible for $164 billion in general account assets and $19 billion in separate account assets. Prior to this role, he was the senior vice president-public markets. He is a University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee graduate with a finance major. He also holds a MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Local Government Member
Kristi Palmer is the Marathon County finance director. Throughout her tenure, she has been a member of the Northcentral Employers Healthcare Alliance Board of Directors. She is currently the board’s past president. In 2010 she was appointed to the Wisconsin Municipal Mutual Insurance Company Board of Directors as a member at large and served as vice president and president until 2015. Prior to being named Marathon County finance director in 2001, Kristi held the position of finance director in Door County and then Langlade County. She has taught several classes in economics and finance as a part-time adjunct teacher at Cardinal Stritch University. For the last 13 years, she has worked with the Government Finance Officers Association completing group and webinar-based training sessions. She currently serves as a citizen member of the Village of Kronenwetter’s Administrative Policy Committee. She holds a master's degree in accounting and bachelor's degree in education from the University of Wisconsin‐Whitewater.
Educator - WRS participant 2
Dave Schalow is a professor of finance at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. He has taught investments and financial planning related courses for 30+ years. In addition, he is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and Certified Financial Planner (CFP). He also owned a real estate/mortgage brokerage firm for many years. Dave has had works published in many professional journals and is the author of a real estate text book. He earned his bachelor’s degree in marketing and finance, and his MBA in risk management and insurance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He earned his PhD in finance with minors in economics and management from the University of Arkansas.
Tim Sheehy is president of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC). Prior to being named president in 1993, Tim served in various capacities with the MMAC in governmental affairs and economic development. Tim is a Ford Foundation Fellow on Regional Sustainable Development, a graduate of the Institute for Organizational Management and a certified chamber of commerce executive. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a bachelor’s degree in political science.
Non-educator - WRS participant 1
John Voelker was appointed to secretary of the Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) in 2021 after serving as the agency’s deputy secretary since 2014. He has more than 30 years of public service experience. Immediately prior to joining ETF, he served 11 years as the Wisconsin director of state courts. During his 22 years with the court system, John also served as the assistant to the chief justice and as a senior policy analyst. A native of Menasha, Wis., he holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.