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April 6, 2020

Dear readers,

As part of the Tech Council’s continuing series, “Crossing the coronavirus chasm,” we’ll hear from key Wisconsin officials from the U.S. Small Business Administration during a 10 a.m. Thursday, April 9th webinar.

Individual and corporate members of the Wisconsin Technology Council may register now to learn how the SBA is working with small businesses through its relief programs. There are limited “seats” in the Zoom meeting. Members of the Tech Council and its programs, the Tech Council Innovation Network and the Tech Council Investor Networks, may email to reserve a spot. Meeting log-in credentials and other guidelines for the hour-long session will be sent by prior to the event.

The Tech Council is pleased to produce this seminar for its members in Wisconsin and beyond. To join the Tech Council, click here or contact Angela Schlobohm at We’ll follow with more details on this informative webinar as we draw closer!


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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

  • 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.
  • 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
  • (new) Wisconsin COVID-19 Startup Talent project to help those displaced from jobs and employers now hiring
CoVID-19 news graphic - BIZ resources

Guest column: COVID-19: Weathering the storm using technology, creativity, and agility

There’s no denying we are living in unprecedented times. The last month is both a testament and an eye-opener to how quickly life and the status quo can be disrupted. The United States left the 2010s and entered the 2020s amidst a decade-long period of exponential economic growth that appeared to be never ending; the national unemployment rate was at a 50-year low; and the country was gearing up for a decisive presidential election.

Enter SARS-COV-2 and COVID-19. A global pandemic emerges. Flash forward to April 2020. The world is now living in what feels like a dystopian future that only fiction authors such as George Orwell and Stephen King could have imagined.

Nick Myers is the founder and CEO of RedFox AI and wrote this piece for the Tech Council Current.
Click here to read his full column in our newsroom.

Myers, Nick


Move to online schools offers students chance to enter ‘Wisconsin YES!’ business plan contest
The closing of schools across Wisconsin due to the COVID-19 epidemic means teachers and students will pursue instruction opportunities online in the coming weeks. One useful tool readily available for middle- and high-school students is the Wisconsin Youth Entrepreneurs in Science, or Wisconsin YES!, contest. Public, private and home-schooled students across Wisconsin are eligible to turn their science- and tech-related ideas into business plans and compete for cash and prizes. This free, statewide youth business plan contest is modeled after the successful Governor’s Business Plan Contest. It is open for online entries from Wisconsin middle- and high-school students through 5 p.m. April 13, 2020.
The contest begins with a 250-word summary submitted through

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 CoVID-19 news graphic

BusinessWire: American Family Insurance to return $200 million in premium to auto customers
WISN: Foxconn could start making ventilators in Wisconsin
Wisconsin State Journal: Wisconsin counties brace for unknown hit to sales tax
Channel3000: Wisconsin granted a major disaster declaration in response to pandemic
WisBusiness: [Manufacturers] Pivoting during a pandemic
Wisconsin State Journal: Madison Development Corporation raises sixth Venture Debt Fund of more than $6 million
BizWomen: Spanx founder giving $5 million to women-run businesses
The New York Times: U.S. is nowhere close to reopening the economy, experts say
Wisconsin State Journal: Who should get ventilators? Group led by UW bioethicist helping state decide
NBC15: Wis. Historical Society launches COVID-19 journaling project
USA Today: 'This is going to be our Pearl Harbor': Surgeon general warns U.S. faces worst week of coronavirus outbreak
Wall Street Journal: State shutdowns have taken at least a quarter of U.S. economy offline
Gov. Tony Evers has announced a new statewide initiative called “Resilient Wisconsin
NPR: CDC now recommends Americans consider wearing cloth face coverings in public
CapTimes: Thousands of patients see procedures postponed as hospitals prep for COVID-19 surge
Wisconsin State Journal: Rep. John Nygren: State should use a scalpel instead of a sledgehammer
Milwaukee Business Journal: MCW’S Dr. Raymond: Wisconsin must 'work harder' to slow doubling rate of COVID-19
The New York Times: Does my county have an epidemic? Estimates show hidden transmission
BizTimes Milwaukee: Silicon Pastures among network to invest $500,000 in battery startup
Wisconsin State Journal: Promega Corp. product approved for use with CDC’s COVID-19 test
WisBusiness: Ag leaders calling for purchase program for excess dairy products

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

View The Show full archives by clicking here.

CoVID-19 news graphic - other resources

  • (new) 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.

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