2024 T1W Conference Co-Chairs

Dr. Maysee Herr

Maysee Herr

Dr. Maysee Herr is Chief Executive Officer of HWCC (Hmong Wisconsin Chamber of Commerce). HWCC is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) that provides technical and financial assistance to entrepreneurs and business startups in historically underinvested and underbanked communities. Prior to coming to HWCC, Dr. Herr was an associate professor of education at University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, teaching undergraduate courses in educational psychology and diversity in a pluralistic society along with several graduate courses including social justice in education, for nearly 10 years. Her experience and passion for working with business owners stems from growing up with entrepreneurial parents who owned several types of businesses in Central Wisconsin. She saw first hand the challenges that they often encountered as first generation Hmong Americans with gaining access to capital and other business resources. This background knowledge fuels the work that she does everyday for underserved business communities.

Dr. Herr’s love of community extends far and wide. She co-founded Hmong Phoojywg (Friend) Enrichment Program in Central Wisconsin in 2012 as a way to provide youth the opportunity to learn how to speak Hmong and to understand Hmong culture and history. She has been a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Consultant for numerous organizations in the nonprofit and for-profit world for many years. While living in Wausau, she was very active in the community, serving as board members of the Community Foundation of North Central Wisconsin as well as Marathon County Child Development Agency, among others. Dr. Herr was one of the founding members of Toward One Wausau. She is currently a board member for Wisconsin Humanities and Employ Milwaukee. Dr. Herr was recognized as a BizTimes Media Notable Minority Executive and one of 48 Most Influential Asian Americans in Wisconsin by Madison365. She was most recently awarded TITAN 100 CEOs in Wisconsin in 2023 as well as WEDC Governor’s Conference Marketplace CEO of the Year in 2022.

Dr. Ducksworth Lawton is the 2021 UW System Regents Individual EDI Award recipient. She also is a Volume One Best in the Valley Community Activist. As the former president, and now vice president of Uniting Bridges, she works with volunteers to run the City of Eau Claire’s Martin Luther King and Juneteenth Programs. She is on the executive board of the Wisconsin ACLU, and on the Steering Committee for 2021 Towards One Wisconsin. A Police and Fire Commissioner for the City of Eau Claire, she is heavily involved in race and cultural bridging work in the state. She consults on military and racial issues, as well as race and civil liberties. As the UWEC representative to the Northern Great Plains History Conference, she was the conference director for the 2021 Northern Great Plains Conference in the city of Eau Claire. She is also on the advisory board of H-war and is a board member of Opportunity Wisconsin

Dr. Ducksworth Lawton is currently a professor of history at University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Dr. Ducksworth-Lawton is a specialist in Twentieth-Century African American Military, National Security, and Civil Rights History. She works in the intersection of race, national security, civil rights, and protest. Her book, Honorable Men: Armed Self Defense and the Deacons for Defense and Justice, is expected out in November of 2022 with University of Virginia Press. Honorable Men describes how African Americans veterans in the Deacons for Defense and Justice combined their military service knowledge with an African American vision of republicanism and citizenship to create a militia in Louisiana that successfully fought the Klan in the 1965-8 activists and protects white and African American Congress of Racial Equality activists. Dr. Ducksworth Lawton is the co-author of Minority and Gender Differences in Officer Career Progression. She is working on a new book on the impact of culture and geography on the activists’ choices between non-violence and armed self-defense in several states in 1964-1967. She earned her PhD in 1994 from Ohio State University in 20th Century military and African American History.

Dr. Selika Ducksworth-Lawton

Selika Ducksworth-Lawton

Pardeep Kaleka

Pardeep Kaleka

Pardeep Kaleka is the executive director of the Interfaith Conference of Greater Milwaukee, a de-radicalization expert, and a trauma-focused clinical therapist. As a first-generation immigrant from India, Mr. Kaleka has spent more than 20 years in the public arenas of law enforcement, education, and social services. He has worked on issues of violence prevention and coalition-building across ethnic, racial and religious cultures, and has helped trauma survivors and perpetrators with recovery. As a consultant he has developed policies and practices to help mental health workers, social service practitioners, law enforcement agents, and educators build healthier, safer, more inclusive communities.

In 2012, following the hate killings at the Oak Creek Sikh Temple, he founded Serve2Unite, an organization nationally recognized for bridging school and community groups. Today, he helps families steer their loved ones away from domestic and foreign violent extremism as a clinician with Parents4Peace and works towards building faith and cultural inclusivity.

John Tribble joined Church Mutual in January 2016 as a territory manager. He also has held the role of director of diversity and inclusion, and was promoted to assistant vice president and chief diversity officer in September 2017.

In June 2018, Tribble was promoted to chief administrative officer of CM Regent, a Church Mutual affiliate. In October 2020, he transferred to Church Mutual as vice president – customer relationship and business development. In January 2022, he became vice president – agency operations and business development. He was promoted to his current position in March 2023.

Tribble earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business from Liberty University in 1992, and his MBA from the University of Baltimore in 1993. Tribble also has earned the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter and the Casualty Claim Law Associate designations.

Tribble is on the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America’s Diversity Task Force, the National Advisory Board of T. LAB Accelerated Learning Center and has served as a member of the Urban League of Greater Hartford

John Tribble

John Tribble