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April 16, 2020

Dear readers,

Back in October 2019, which now seems like a lifetime ago, I wrote about Madison entrepreneur Shree Kalluri and his launch of Zerology and its all-electric fleet of Tesla Model 3 cars. It ran in the Wisconsin State Journal under the headline, “Healthy startup communities benefit when entrepreneurs cash out.”

Kalluri’s latest example of giving back came Thursday when he donated 16,000 scarce KN95 masks to law enforcement agencies across Wisconsin.

Tech Council Innovation Network member Kalluri founded Forte Research Systems in Madison, which was sold last year, generating returns for him and others. Some of that money went into Zerology and some was used to purchase those 16,000 masks for Wisconsin’s front-line law enforcement officers.

Thanks to Kalluri and other TCIN members who helped facilitate the donation, including KW2, the Madison-based digital agency, and SJL Government Affairs & Communications.

Please read the latest story here.



Stay tuned for announcements about virtual Tech Council webinars on COVID-19 issues of interest to our members and others.

Do you have news or best practices to contribute to a future edition of Tech Council Current?


Tom Still, president

InsideWis: Longer-term economic recovery may depend on how science can help

Whether it’s called a modern “Manhattan Project,” or a medical moon shot, the concept of long-term economic recovery rests on how confident people are they won’t risk serious illness by venturing forth in public again.

Wisconsin stands to be a significant part of such an undertaking, whatever it’s called.

The shorter-term debate is well under way over the gradual lifting of COVID-19 emergency rules, such as the now-extended “safer-at-home” order in Wisconsin. At least a dozen states, including regional coalitions on the East and West coasts, are exploring next steps as they seek to balance responses to the virus with calls for reopening the economy, at least, in part.

Click here to read Still’s full article in our newsroom.

View Tom Still’s full InsideWis archives by clicking here.


Guest column: “Sheltered in place” applies to your financial portfolio, too

These are extraordinary times. The COVID-19 pandemic has shuttered large swaths of the American economy, and financial markets have shuddered in response.

We’re here to listen to your concerns and to provide perspective on market conditions, which are unprecedented. In time, this national and global crisis will pass, but until it does, all of us will need to carry on as best we can.

Here are our thoughts on what is happening, and how we can work together toward creating a brighter future. Click here to read the full column by Tech Council member Burish here.


Andy Burish

We want to know how you’re doing!

Please complete a brief online survey, the results of which we believe will be helpful to policymakers, news media and others as Wisconsin prepares for the economic aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Let me emphasis “brief” really means brief in this survey, with only 11 questions – counting demographics – and all questions answerable via radial buttons. It’s anonymous and asks for your thoughts on the timing of the economic recovery, what actions can help your organization, targeted workforce needs and more. We’ll publish the results when they’re tabulated.


We announced a crop of 28 finalists in the 2020 Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest this week, and we’re looking forward to the competition entering the next phase. If you’re able to contribute services to the prize kitty – legal, accounting, consulting, office space, media and design, cash or something else a young company might want – please contact us. Email your ideas to: and we’ll get back to you. Thanks for helping this exciting group of entrepreneurs advance their companies during a challenging time.  

View an interactive map of public wi-fi “hot spots” in Wisconsin, based on information provided to the state Public Service Commission.  By providing this information, the PSC in no way alters the requirements that govern access to the property, the terms for using the wi-fi, or conduct at the sites, which are governed by other laws including the “Safer at Home” order. Users are asked to stay in their vehicles if driving to these locations and to maintain social distancing guidelines.


Aberdean Consulting is hosting several webinars to enhance the remote working environment safety:
Microsoft Outlook Productivity Hacks on Tuesday, April 21 and Tuesday, May 5
Collaborate with Microsoft OneNote on Thursday, April 23 and Thursday, May 7

Reinhart Law is partnering with Wisconsin Family Business Center to host webinars designed to help family-owned businesses:
Planning & Portfolio Opportunities for Challenged Environments on Wednesday, April 22

Join UW-Madison’s Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies for their Earth Day Conference on Monday, April 20

Join for virtual lunch event entitled "Earth Day: the Next 50 Years” on Tuesday, April 21

DreamBank is hosting Sales During Social Distancing: Thriving in the New Normal with Ashley Quinto Powell on Thursday, April 23

Baker Tilly is offering a series of coronavirus-related business concerns (registration for all):
A briefing on coronavirus-related tax relief on Wednesday, April 22
Crisis, continuity and recovery: A real-time enterprise risk workshop on Wednesday, April 29


upcoming virtual events

  • WEDC Small Business 2020 Program: Assistance will be available to Wisconsin-based Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) List of All 23 CDFIs in Wisconsin to provide grants to their existing loan clients to help mitigate business-related cash flow issues in response to the Covid-19 outbreak. Approved CDFIs will make program grants (up to $20,000) available to for-profit businesses meeting the following: criteria: Current loan recipient in good standing as of 3/1/20 with the approved CDFI (or its collaborating CDFIs);20 or fewer PT/FT employees; Greater than $0 but less than $2 million in annual revenues; and, preference should be given to service and retail businesses
  • Gov. Evers’ office has launched a statewide COVID-19 website that aggregates information and resources throughout state government, including: 
    COVID-19 Volunteer Program
    Religious Gatherings and Services
    DVA Assistance to Needy Veterans Program
  • The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development produced this helpful Frequently Asked Questions document.
  • WEDC has compiled a comprehensive overview of their resources along with state and federal resources to assist Wisconsin citizens aimed at maintaining the viability of the companies upon which our economy depends.
  • Report any scams or price gouging to Wisconsin Department of Justice: If you suspect fraud or a scam, Attorney General Kaul suggests filing a complaint online at
  • Small Business Administration (SBA) has guidance for businesses, and is offering low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) for businesses and non-profits impacted by coronavirus
  • Centers for Disease Control: Coronavirus latest updates
  • Wisconsin Department of Health Services: COVID-19 Outbreaks in Wisconsin
  • The FDIC has provided guidance to banking institutions and consumers affected by COVID-19 and encouraged financial institutions to work constructively with borrowers and customers in affected communities.
  • The Department of Labor has issued guidance on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act: Employer Paid Leave Requirements.
  • NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) centers are providing services to small- and medium-sized manufacturers such as connecting businesses that are pivoting their production in response to the coronavirus to new supply chains, connecting firms with state resources, advising companies on new operational issues, and providing workforce support.
  • COMPTIA offers eight cybersecurity tips for working remotely
  • Wisconsin COVID-19 Startup Talent project to help those displaced from jobs and employers now hiring
  • The Department of the Defense has established the Joint Acquisition Task Force (JATF) for COVID-19 to assess and rapidly respond to challenges presented by this pandemic. They are collecting information from both government and non-government personnel who are interested in getting involved. All resources and solutions are welcome from industry, academia, venture capital firms, individual contributors and more. Request information here.
  • Wisconsin Hospital Association released a COVID-19 dynamic Situational Awareness Update
  • (new) View a PSC interactive map of public wi-fi “hot spots” in Wisconsin
CoVID-19 news graphic - BIZ resources

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 CoVID-19 news graphic Milwaukee Business Journal: SBA's $349 billion Paycheck Protection Program officially runs out of money
Wisconsin State Journal: Madison businessman donates thousands of KN95 masks to Wisconsin police officers
TMJ4: Gov. Tony Evers extends Wisconsin's 'Safer at Home' order until May 26
Wall Street Journal: Corporate innovation flourishes in coronavirus fight featuring UW-Madison
WISN: Gov. Evers asks Trump for $2 billion for Wisconsin coronavirus losses
WisBusiness: EMS groups requesting Medicaid rate increase
Milwaukee Business Journal: Key COVID-19 indicators continue to improve, but peak not here yet
Wisconsin State Journal: State ventilator triage guidelines delayed as COVID-19 activity appears to stabilize
Madison Magazine: 198 places offering delivery, to-go or curbside specials in response to COVID-19
The Cap Times: Madison to open more roadways to pedestrians, cyclists with room to maintain social distancing Health, business leaders say reopening remains distant goal
Milwaukee Business Journal: Medical College CEO Raymond's checklist for a 'smart restart' of Wisconsin's economy Students could take SAT, ACT at home this fall if schools remain closed
WISN: Gov. Tony Evers signs Wisconsin coronavirus bill into law
TechCrunch: GE Healthcare and Microsoft are bringing a COVID-19 patient monitoring tool to health systems Coronavirus could erode global fight against other diseases
UW-Madison: (Webinar recap April 14) Crossroads of ideas: COVID-19 Edition, Part 1


View The Show full archives by clicking here.

CoVID-19 news graphic - other resources

  • WI Health Connect: Think you may have COVID-19? Free, confidential over-the-phone screening now available.
  • Live dashboard with QUICK NUMBERS and FACTS on the IMPACT of COVID-19
  • View UW-Madison’s COVID-19 top updates, plans and response.
  • IdeaAdvance: Get your idea off the ground: Learn more about this $75,000 seed fund.
  • Newance is offering free “Office Hours” for business leaders: Reach out to Amanda Daering.
  • Fiveable offers free AP assistance, the exams through CollegeBoard are scheduled for at-home and online in May.
  • Access Microsoft’s efforts to help teams work remotely and navigate online.
  • Michael Best has formed a COVID-19 Task Force to address business and legal implications.
  • Reinhart’s Coronavirus Resource Center includes the impact of HR 6201 on employees.
  • BDO monitors the latest COVID-19 business impacts and regulatory updates.
  • Wisconsin Veteran’s Chamber of Commerce: Member guide, understanding COVID-19 and how to plan.
  • Learn more about Epic tools that can help you and your organization treat and prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • WIPLFi: Information to help businesses and individuals weather the coronavirus.
  • Quarles & Brady has created a resource of COVID-19 articles that impact clients and businesses.
  • Click here to sign up for the WisPolitics/WisBusiness daily healthcare report.
  • gener8tor is working in conjunction with AmFam Institute to host emergency one-week virtual programs for small businesses affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Husch Blackwell explores issues at the intersection of law and public health emergencies.
  • TASC is making its expertise and emergency benefits accounts available for free to Dane County employees in 2020.
  • Neider & Boucher provides their clients with the necessary focus to help define and reach their goals during COVID-19.
  • UW-Madison’s CROWE researchers track and analyze the economic impact of COVID-19 in Wisconsin and beyond.
  • WMC launched a Coronavirus (COVID-19) Business Resource Center and Employer Toolkit.
  • Godfrey & Kahn’s COVID-19 Resource Center provides timely insights on the unique legal challenges and business implications created by the pandemic.
  • Baker Tilly’s Coronavirus Resource Center: how an unplanned event such as the COVID-19 outbreak can affect your organization, employees, customers and suppliers.
  • (new) The Burish Group: UBS Business Owner Resiliency Center

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