Most Influential People in Milwaukee

Michael Gifford, President and Chief Executive Officer of the AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin, was named one of the most influential people in Milwaukee according to a new list published by Milwaukee Magazine.

The magazine, which ranks Milwaukee leaders across 10 areas of influence, lists Gifford as an influential leader in the Health and Wellness area. In addition to Gifford, the list includes ARCW partners and collaborators:

  • John Bartkowski, President and CEO of Sixteenth Street Community Health Centers;

  • Cathy Jacobson, Froedtert Health CEO and President;

  • Dr. Geoffrey Swain, Professor, UW School of Medicine and Public Health and Medical Director of the Milwaukee Health Department;

  • Joy Tapper, Executive Director, Milwaukee Health Care Partnership; and

  • Dr. Steve Hargarten, Chair of Emergency Medicine, Froedtert Hospital.

“We knew when we selected Mike four years ago that he was an up and coming health care leader,” said Jennifer Walther, Chair of the ARCW Board of Directors. “This honor for his vision, tenacity and leadership is well-deserved, as Mike has built and is expanding a unique HIV health care system that is leading our nation. It also demonstrates ARCW's commitment to quality and leadership in the fight against AIDS.”

After serving for five years as the Director of Government Relations and for fourteen years as the Chief Operating Officer, Gifford was selected to become the third President and CEO of ARCW. His leadership during nearly his quarter century tenure has enabled ARCW to emerge as the largest provider of HIV prevention, health care and social services in Wisconsin and one of the largest in the United States. The integrated health care and social service model ARCW has developed for HIV patients under Gifford’s leadership is also now a nationally-recognized model for how to develop a medical home to treat complex chronic diseases among medically and socio-economically vulnerable populations.

Building on the previous success he helped create at ARCW, Gifford is already looking forward to creating solutions for the next set of challenges the AIDS epidemic is presenting to patients and communities.

“It is an honor and humbling to be considered among Milwaukee’s health care leaders,” Gifford said. “But the fight against AIDS doesn’t afford the opportunity to look back. Our relentless pursuit of a world without AIDS is more than just words in our vision statement. ARCW is going to lead the creation of an AIDS-free generation.”

“This process will start by driving down the number of new infections and ensuring that the number of patients we serve grows by 50% over the next five years. And while continuing to grow, we won’t lose sight of the importance of the outcomes our patients deserve – chiefly among them, increasing the number of patients who are effectively managing their HIV disease from 85% to 95%,” Gifford stated.

Click here to read this media article.