Matt Wagner

Matt Wagner, Ph.D.

Vice President of Revitalization Programs

Matt has more than 20 years of non-profit management experience in downtown development, entrepreneurship and tech-based economic development. At the NMSC, Matt is leading the launch of the renewed and re-imagined Four Point Approach, as well as helping the Center reach new communities with this refreshed framework. Overseeing the Field Services team, Matt also leads the Center's efforts to expand technical service offerings, and offer preservation-based economic revitalization services directly to communities.

Before joining the Center in September 2015, Matt served as President of SC Johnson’s Redevelopment Corporation in Racine, Wis. Previous to SCJ, Matt led the Center for Advanced Technology and Innovation at Gateway Technical College and University of Wisconsin-Parkside, where he also served as UW-Parkside’s Director for the Small Business Development Center and Director of the Solutions for Economic Growth Center. Prior to this, Matt served as Executive Director of the Downtown Racine Corporation. Notably, Matt worked as “Road Warrior” for the National Main Street Center between 1995 and 1998. From 1991 to 1995, he led the Sheboygan Falls Main Street as Director, during which time Sheboygan Falls was chosen as an inaugural Great American Main Street Award winner. Matt received his Ph.D. in Urban Affairs with a specialization in Urban Economic Development from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is a Fulbright Scholar Specialist, recently completing work in the area of entrepreneurship and economic development at the University of Hyderabad, India. In addition, Matt has presented internationally in areas of economic development and community revitalization, including recent work for the U.S. Embassy in Lithuania, the National Trust in Australia and Canada, as well as the Japan Institute of Invention and Innovation.