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WEA Trust Grant Lets all Waukesha Citizens Become Artists

City of Waukesha Wins $3,000 Award for City-wide Art Initiative

WAUKESHA, Wisconsin - As part of the 3rd Annual Local Spark Award, WEA Trust awarded the City of Waukesha a $3,000 grant for The Waukesha Community Canvas project, which lets the entire community become artists.

Waukesha already embraces the arts, music and theater throughout the city, but is looking to bring art to different neighbors—making it possible for everyone in the community to have a voice and input.

“Our ultimate goal is to have thousands of citizen artists paint their favorite thing about Waukesha on a 2” x 2” canvas,” said Sally Kahlfeldt, Special Project Coordinator at the City of Waukesha Community Deelopment Department in her Local Spark submission. The city will partner with the Waukesha Community Arts Project and a small team of local artists who will masterfully assemble the mini-art canvases into one large masterpiece.

“I just want to thank WEA Trust for providing us with the grant. I’m excited to see a lot of great things come out of it,” said Shawn Reilly, Mayor of Waukesha.

“We are excited and honored to be able to provide this grant for Wisconsin Municipalties,” said Jon Klett, the Trust’s Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Product Development. “I always look forward to reading all of the inspiring new proposals each year,” said Klett.

In partnership with League of Wisconsin Municipalities, WEA Trust created the Local Spark Award to recognize and reward innovation in Wisconsin’s cities and villages. This summer, WEA Trust received dozens of project proposals from around Wisconsin, which were reviewed by a panel of four judges:


Jerry Deschane – Executive Director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities

Dan Hill – Local Government Specialist at the UW-Extension

Terry Estness – Executive Director, Wauwatosa Chamber of Commerce

Steve Cummings – Mayor, City of Oshkosh and former Local Spark Award Winner


The City of Waukesha was one of three Local Spark Award winners chosen by the selection committee. Other winners include the City of Wausau for their River Rhythms Initiative and Escuela Verde, a project based school in Milwaukee, for a social and eco-justice related mural.



The WEA Trust provides group health insurance and administrative services to public employers throughout Wisconsin. The not-for-profit WEA Trust was created in 1970 to serve Wisconsin school district employees. Today, the WEA Trust offers its top-rated service and quality benefits to all state, county, and municipal groups.