By Nathan Kerner
Wanda J. Montgomery graduated from East Division High School (now Riverside University School) in 1972. She went to the University of Wisconsin in Madison looking for an education. What she found was a husband. Wanda met Floyd Montgomery and nine months later they were married. Deciding to start their family as soon as possible, Wanda and Floyd moved back to Milwaukee as Floyd to a job with Family Support Services. Wanda became a mother, but her desire to help others pushed her to finish her education.
Wanda enrolled in UW-Milwaukee, while still finding time to raise her children and work for the university. In 1988, she graduated with her Bachelor’s in Community Education. Wanda would find work at Gray’s child development Center, which was founded by Wanda’s mother in 1973. Wanda would work there for the next ten years. Wanda felt it necessary to continue her education, so once again she worked, and watched over her children while attending school. Wanda obtained her Masters of Educational Policy and Leadership from Marquette University.
From there Wanda became the Executive director of a Housing Agency, and was hired in 2003 by Maximus, a W-2 agency. Wanda’s mission was to help stabilize low-income families. She worked in a partnership with Children’s Hospital for a great deal of time. This led to Wanda finding a job opening with Children’s, where she currently works. Wanda is now the Director of Community Partnerships. Her work requires her to have several ties with the community, of which she has many from her many years of work experience.
Children’s Hospital’s goal is to make Milwaukee’s children the healthiest children in the country. One way that Wanda is working to achieve that is sending Community Health Navigators into three Milwaukee communities, Metcalfe Park, Amani-Franklin, and Lindsay Heights. The Health Navigators communicate with the communities, and help to determine the greatest detriments to children’s health, and assist the community in rectifying these detriments.
Wanda and her husband Floyd have three children. Daughter Marcelle Haddix, who is a professor at Syracuse University; son Adrian, who works in waste management in Milwaukee; and Daughter Candace, who works for UGL, a management company in Boston. The Montgomerys also have three grandchildren. Wanda has also written a book, published in three volumes, Blueprints to Excellence.