Urban Milwaukee pushes through fire at its office

By: - June 9, 2020 10:03 pm
Urban Milwaukee's office after the fire (photo courtesy of Urban Milwaukee)

Urban Milwaukee’s office after the fire (photo courtesy of Urban Milwaukee)

Urban Milwaukee continues to recover after a fire damaged it’s entire office space on N. Milwaukee St. in the Cream City. According to a report written by Urban Milwaukee president and co-founder Jeramey Jannene. More than 30 firefighters battled for hours to extinguish the flames. The renowned news outlet’s sister business, which sells Milwaukee-themed merchandise, was also damaged.

Nevertheless, it will take more than that to break the spirit of the 12-year-old city news source. “We must keep things in perspective,” Jannene wrote. “While there will be costs, both financial and of our limited time, the spotlight must remain on the defining issues in our community. We will continue to cover the pandemic and protests like we have before, hitting the streets to listen to what people have to say and analyzing the data to evaluate how Wisconsin’s fight against COVID-19 is going.”

No foul play was detected by firefighters, and the blaze appears to have been an accident. Jannene thanked the firefighters of the Milwaukee Fire Department for their efforts. “We don’t know of any injuries and for that we are grateful,” he wrote. “We are relieved to know the fire appears accidental.”

“While a fire has devastated us, it won’t stop us,” writes Jannene. Urban Milwaukee is sustained largely by paid memberships. As it rebuilds, it is  urging continued support from its readership, a base built up over the course of more than a decade.

The outlet has taken to covering the daily protests in Milwaukee, which have been sustained for 11 consecutive days with more on the way.

Jannene concludes his report on the fire by saying, “now if you’ll excuse us, it’s time to get back to work.” As the headline of his piece declares, the news outlet will rise again, like a phoenix reborn from its own ashes.

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Isiah Holmes
Isiah Holmes

Isiah Holmes is a journalist and videographer, and a lifelong resident of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Holmes' video work dates back to his high school days at Wauwatosa East High, when he made a documentary about the local police department. Since then, his writing has been featured in Urban Milwaukee, Isthmus, Milwaukee Stories, Milwaukee Neighborhood News Services, Pontiac Tribune, the Progressive Magazine, Al Jazeera, and other outlets. He was also featured in the 2018 documentary The Chase Key, and was the recipient of the Sierra Club Great Waters Group 2021 Environmental Hero of the Year award. The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council also awarded Holmes its 2021-2022 Media Openness Award for using the open records laws for investigative journalism. Holmes was also a finalist in the 2021 Milwaukee Press Club Excellence in Journalism Awards alongside the rest of the Wisconsin Examiner's staff. The Silver, or second place, award for Best Online Coverage of News was awarded to Holmes and his colleague Henry Redman for an investigative series into how police responded to the civil unrest and protests in Kenosha during 2020. Holmes was also awarded the Press Club's Silver (second-place) award for Public Service Journalism for articles focusing on police surveillance in Wisconsin.