Melissa Goins, vice president J. Jeffers & Co., and president, Maures Development; JoAnne Sabir, co-owner The Juice Kitchen and co-owner, Freedom Endeavors; and Juli Kaufmann, president, Fix Development
They are entrepreneurs and real estate developers, but Melissa Goins, JoAnne Sabir, and Juli Kaufmann are, more generally, change agents in Milwaukee, investing in and revitalizing neighborhoods that have long been ignored and neglected. Goins and a co-developer recently completed the Garfield School and Griot apartments projects, which they hope will be a catalytic development in the city's Bronzeville neighborhood. Sabir and Kaufmann have partnered on a project called Sherman Rising. They are redeveloping the former BMO Harris Bank building at 35th and Fond du Lac, which burned during the Sherman Park unrest in 2016. Once completed, the building will become home to a dozen businesses. Each woman says her work is not only about the bottom line, but about the social impact of what she creates. Or, as Goins puts it, "leveraging bricks and mortar to bring pride and hope to people."