About the RDA

The RDA is comprised of seven members of the Watertown community involved in enhancing the economic vitality of the city through their professional and/or civic affiliations. RDA members are appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Watertown Common Council.  

Robert Marchant, chair

Robert (Rob) Marchant is the President and Partner of the Wisconsin office of Michael Best Strategies, LLC. In addition to managing the day-to-day operations of the firm, he assists in developing short- and long-term plans for client growth.

 

Rob’s work is informed by a wealth of legal and administrative experience. A seasoned lawyer, he is familiar with and knowledgeable about the Wisconsin lawmaking process. His bipartisan experience – which includes drafting the rules of procedures for both legislative chambers, serving as parliamentarian of the Wisconsin Senate, and serving in the executive branch – gives him with a valuable perspective on the complex operations and political dynamics of state government.

 

Prior to joining Michael Best Strategies, Rob served as deputy secretary of the Wisconsin department of employee trust funds. In this role, he oversaw all aspects of day-to-day operations, including the department’s major program areas, the Wisconsin retirement system, and the group health insurance program for state employees. Rob also served as chief clerk and director of operations for the Wisconsin state senate for eight years. Prior to being Chief Clerk – serving under five majority leaders in both parties – Rob was a legislative drafting attorney, specializing in business and corporate law, campaign finance law, and construction law.

 

Rob received a Doctor of Law (J.D.) from University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

 

His passion is working with C-Suite leaders to create opportunities and solve business challenges through proactively engaging with their communities and their government.

 

In his spare time, he is the Chief Statistician for the Green Bay Packers.

Nathan Salas, vice-chair

Nathan Salas grew up in Watertown WI and is a 1998 graduate of WHS.  While in High School, Nathan participated in the National Honor Society and Student Council; plus, he was a member of the football, basketball, and track teams.  After graduation, Nathan entered Basic Training at the United States Air Force Academy prior to entering his freshman year at the Academy, and graduated from basic training in August of 1998.

 

While at the Academy, Nathan successfully completed skydiving training, glyder training, and survival school training.  He graduated from the United States Air Force Academy in May 2002 with a Bachelor of Science degree in General Engineering with a major in Political Science.  Upon graduation, Nathan entered federal agent training at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center and completed the federal investigator course with fellow agents from the Secret Service, ATF, DEA, US Marshals, and State Department.

 

Nathan went on to serve in the Air Force at Aviano Air Base in Italy until 2005, and then he left the military and joined the business world.  Since leaving the Air Force, he has held various management and leadership positions in the financial industry, and is currently President of Partnership Bank. Since 2005, Nathan earned a MBA in Finance and Management from UW-Whitewater and graduated from the Graduate School of Banking at UW-Madison.

 

Nathan resides in Watertown, WI with his wife Nikki and his three children: Sofia, Ava, and Brody.  Nathan enjoys spending time with his family, kettlebelling, movies of all genres and watching the Green Bay Packers, UW Badgers and Air Force Falcon football. Nathan is actively involved in various community groups and events in the Watertown community, such as: YES! Watertown, Watertown City Branding Commission, Watertown Education Foundation, Leadership Watertown, Main St. Board and the GHDP for Jefferson and Dodge Counties.  Nathan is passionate about the community and is dedicated to making Watertown a remarkable community.

Kristen Fish, executive director

Ms. Fish has 20 years of direct experience leading the business development efforts of a municipality, and working in both media and manufacturing sectors. In 2009 she and two colleagues started Redevelopment Resource, an economic development consulting firm which operates throughout the Midwest. She has managed all aspects of business development and adaptive reuse programs including business recruitment, retention, entrepreneurial programming, loan fund management, deal structuring, blight elimination and policy/program development. She managed development in a 400+ acre industrial park, and also managed multiple Tax Increment Financing Districts from creation to fulfillment.

 

Her passion for downtown revitalization is what drives her work in Watertown.  As Executive Director for the RDA, Ms. Fish is energized by the redevelopment opportunity that awaits the RDA's attention and is excited to be a part of it.​

Brad Kuenzi

There are many qualities and skills that go into being an excellent real estate professional - integrity, in-depth community and market knowledge, marketing savvy, effective negotiation skills and a high-quality professional network, all of which are hallmarks of how I work.

That said, in my experience as a Watertown real estate professional, I've also found that providing the very best service is essentially about putting my clients first. This means keeping myself accessible, being a good listener as well as a good communicator, and responding quickly to your needs. This "Client First" philosophy has always been my approach, and it requires me to continually improve my skills and ways of doing business.

As a lifetime Watertown Resident, I am passionate about the City of Watertown, and I want to do everything within my power to see it succeed. 

Chris Ruetten

My wife and I have lived in Watertown for about 15 years. We have 5 children from 1 to 15 years old. I work in Waukesha at Ruekert and Mielke as a Professional Land Surveyor.

 

I was elected to my first term to the common council in the spring of 2019. Hobbies include hunting, fishing, hiking, attending my children's events.

Bob Wetzel

Bob Wetzel has lived in Watertown for 19 years. He is married to Sheril for 40 years and is father to four children and grandfather to 12. Before coming to Watertown, Bob served as a pastor for 21 years.

 

He is employed at Adtech Industries in Watertown as a shipping/receiving clerk. Wetzel coached little league baseball for five years and was elected to serve three consecutive terms on the Watertown City Council beginning in 2006.

Matt Zastrow

Matt Zastrow grew up on a dairy farm just outside of Watertown. He graduated from UW-Whitewater with a degree in Production/Operations Management. In 2001, he began a career in community banking. Currently, Matt is the Senior Lending Officer at PremierBank where he oversees the bank’s lending team. 

Matt is honored to serve on the RDA board and is looking forward to many of the positive changes that are on the horizon. Watertown is a great community to live and raise a family but I want to see the city continue to improve so that our kids and grandkids want to work and raise a family here 20 and 40 years from now.   

   

Matt and his wife have 2 children, Britin and Braeden. He enjoys spending time with his family and coaching his kid. He has been a member of Trinity Church his entire life and has served on the Church Council and on the School Board. Matt is also active in the Watertown Rotary. 

David Zimmermann

David Zimmermann was born and raised in Watertown.  After 15 years of college and teaching in Minnesota, Dave and his wife, Nancy, returned to Watertown to teach in the Watertown Unified School District.  Dave was the choir director at Watertown High School for 16 years before “retiring” to become a pastor at River Valley Alliance Church in Watertown.

 

Dave has always had a special connection with his hometown and jumped at the opportunity to join the RDA to help in the efforts to revitalize the city.

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© 2019 Watertown, WI Redevelopment Authority

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