Marti Mikkelson

News Reporter

Marti, a Waukesha native, joined the WUWM news team in February of 1999. She is also host of WUWM's weekly political podcast, Capitol Notes.

Previously, she was an anchor and reporter at WTMJ in Milwaukee, WIBA in Madison, and WLIP in Kenosha.

Marti’s work has been recognized by RTNDA, the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, Associated Press, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated, and the Milwaukee Press Club.

Marti earned a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse. Marti currently lives on her favorite side of town – Milwaukee’s east side.

» Contact WUWM News

Maayan Silver

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers has directed state agencies to slash $250 million from their budgets in the coming months to make up for revenue losses incurred by the coronavirus pandemic.  The cuts would serve as a blueprint for when Evers and the Legislature craft a new state budget early next year. The cuts are in addition to the $70 million the governor ordered a few months ago, which took effect July 1. 

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Vice President Mike Pence was in the battleground state of Wisconsin last week, campaigning for another four years of him and President Donald Trump. Pence made a couple of stops, including one in Ripon, the birthplace of the Republican Party. Trump narrowly won Wisconsin in 2016 and is trailing former Vice President and presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden in the polls.

OceanProd / stock.adobe.com

Updated Tuesday at 1:29 p.m. CT

The Milwaukee Common Council voted unanimously Monday to institute a citywide mandatory mask requirement.

Under the ordinance, anybody age 3 and older would have to wear a face-covering in buildings open to the public, as well as any outdoor public space when it’s not possible to stay 6 feet away from people who aren’t in the same household. There are exceptions for medical conditions or religious reasons.

The Milwaukee Health Department, not the police, would be in charge of enforcing the ordinance.

Chuck Quirmbach

The Wisconsin Republican Party held its annual state convention over the weekend in Green Bay.  About 300 people attended the two-day in-person event in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.  Masks were available, but few people wore them, and participants sat close to each other.  The GOP took the opposite approach of state Democrats, who held an all-virtual convention last month.

Maayan Silver

A federal appeals court panel has upheld some voting restrictions in Wisconsin just four months before the November presidential election. They include limits on in-person early voting hours to two weeks before an election -- and a return to requiring people to live in a district for 28 days, not 10, before they can vote.

In this week’s Capitol Notes conversation, JR Ross of WisPolitics.com discusses the winners and losers of the ruling with WUWM’s Marti Mikkelson. He also describes what the November presidential election might look like if the ruling stands.  

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence made separate stops in Wisconsin last week, while surrogates for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden held a virtual event here. Both sides took swipes at each other during their appearances.

In this week’s Capitol Notes conversation, WUWM’s Marti Mikkelson asked Jeff Mayers of wispolitics.com if all the attention signals Wisconsin’s importance in the November election.

Maayan Silver

Former Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson is back in the public eye. The Board of Regents announced late last week that Thompson will be the interim UW System president while the search continues for a permanent replacement for Ray Cross, who is retiring. Thompson will assume the job on July 1, after the lone finalist for the position took himself out of the running.

In this week’s Capitol Notes conversation, WUWM's Marti Mikkelson asks JR Ross of wispolitics.com what he thinks an interim Thompson presidency will look like.  He says it won't be easy.

Chuck Quirmbach / WUWM

Wisconsin's unemployment rate dropped from 13.6% in April to 12% in May, a “nice surprise” that reflects just the very beginning of the state's reopening after the Wisconsin Supreme Court struck down the governor's stay-at-home order.

Katie Wheeler / flickr

The Democratic Party of Wisconsin held its annual state convention on Friday night, virtually instead of in-person because of the coronavirus. Elected officials gave speeches, and then it was time for the headliner – presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

He talked about the death of George Floyd while in police custody, and said the country needs to confront systemic racism. In a swipe at Republican President Donald Trump, Biden said he’ll restore “real leadership” to the White House.

Marti Mikkelson

Milwaukee has often been referred to as the “city of festivals” and a “city of immigrants.” Those two nicknames come to life every summer, when thousands of people flock to the lakefront to take in ethnic festivals. 

Each one is held on a separate weekend at the Henry Maier Festival Park, also known as the Summerfest grounds.

>>First Time in 53-Year History, Summerfest Canceled

Chuck Quirmbach

Protests continue across much of Wisconsin, after George Floyd died at the hands of Minneapolis police. Democratic Gov. Tony Evers has asked the Republican-controlled Legislature to immediately pass a bill designed to reform use of force policies in Wisconsin

In this week’s Capitol Notes conversation, WUWM's Marti Mikkelson asked JR Ross of wispolitics.com what the chances are of a bill being passed.

Marti Mikkelson / WUWM

Thousands of protesters marched in Milwaukee Sunday as the city saw its tenth consecutive day of demonstrations in the wake of the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police. Members of the Milwaukee Bucks also joined the protests. More than 7,000 people gathered at the Fiserv Forum in downtown Milwaukee early Sunday afternoon.

Bucks guard Sterling Brown called for nine seconds of silence — symbolic of the nearly nine minutes in which a Minneapolis police officer knelt on George Floyd’s neck, causing his death. 

Marti Mikkelson

Hundreds of people turned out Wednesday for a protest at the Islamic Society on Milwaukee’s south side. Demonstrators spoke out against police brutality and the death of George Floyd, a black man who died May 25 at the hands of a white Minneapolis police officer. 

>>Read WUWM & NPR Full Protest Coverage

Marti Mikkelson

Hundreds of people grabbed brooms and rakes Monday to help clean up Martin Luther King Drive, which is in the heart of a minority-owned business district north of downtown Milwaukee. The district saw significant damage this past weekend when peaceful protests turned violent over three consecutive nights.

Katie Wheeler/flickr

Department of Workforce Development Secretary Caleb Frostman testified before a state Senate committee last week about why many Wisconsinites still haven’t received unemployment benefits. Of about 2.5 million claims filed, nearly 750,000 are unpaid.

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