Board Position: Chair
Former Milwaukee County Executive
Chris Abele is a civic leader, business owner, and philanthropist. He currently serves as president of CSA Partners, a venture fund he founded in 2013, focused on high growth startup companies, and also owns CSA Commercial, a real estate company. He founded Ward 4, a co-working and convening space in Milwaukee’s fourth ward. From 2011 to 2020 he served as Milwaukee County Executive where he focused on lowering the county’s debt and deficit, improving efficiency, increasing accountability, building public private partnerships, and instituting a performance management culture. Chris was also founding member of the Initiative on County Innovation at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Prior to his time as County Executive, he was CEO of the Argosy Foundation, where he continues to serve as a trustee.
His 25 years of volunteer work has included founding Milwaukee Film, founding the Milwaukee Shakespeare Company, and co-founding No Studios with John Ridley. Chris has served on dozens of non-profit boards, including chairing the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, the National Association of Health Education Centers, Women for Women International, and the Royal Shakespeare America board. He currently serves as chair the national One Victory board and chair-elect of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.
Chris was a Hunt Kean Leadership Fellow in 2017. He studied at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin.
Chris is married and has three daughters.