Every week in 2015, OnMilwaukee.com and local design company Too Much Metal join forces to introduce the latest member of the Milwaukee All-Stars – a team of unfamiliar winners living in the city who consistently and diligently make it shine. Each week, a new member will join the team – based on your recommendations – and at the end of the year all will come together in a Rally of the Raddest Milwaukeeans. We're not sure what that means quite yet, so for now, meet …
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: Where do you currently work?
Jon Firle: I’m an Assistant Manager for Axiom Properties. I was destined to be in apartment management ever since I saw "Mr. Furley" in the TV show "Three’s Company" since we basically have the same name.
I have worked in almost every industry possible before this, from sales to management and even as a postal carrier. It’s a job where I feel comfortable and I can use my love for getting to meet new people and things on a daily basis.
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: What time of year / season is your favorite in Milwaukee and why?
Firle: I have to say spring is my favorite time. It signifies starting new to me and you can see it in others, too. Everyone just seems a little happier when that first warm, sunny, spring day appears.
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: What’s your favorite or least favorite smell in Milwaukee?
Firle: Oy! Jones Island on a hot summer day. It's a necessary facility but that doesn't mean we have to like it.
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: What neighborhood do you live in?
Firle: Bay View, SSP. ("South Side Pride.")
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: What's your hope for Milwaukee?
Firle: My hope is that Milwaukee becomes as great as it once was. I grew up in Bay View and remember when thousands of blue collar jobs disappeared due to shut downs and companies relocating. It was devastating and caused a chain reaction of smaller businesses to close as well.
However, we've come a long way since then and I believe our Midwest hard-working values helped us out of those dark days. Milwaukee has a lot to offer between the neighborhood associations, the area BIDS and local businesses. I believe in getting out and supporting them as often as you can. Get involved, volunteer, try to make a difference and spread the love. We all need support now and then and being helpful when you're able is what ties us all together.
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: When / how did you fall in love with Milwaukee?
Firle: I was born and raised here and always had Milwaukee pride but it wasn't until I got a little older that I began respecting what we actually have here. The people are what make a city great and I believe we have some pretty cool peeps here.
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: Why do you do what you do?
Firle: I love socializing, doing community work and trying to make a difference. Growing up my family struggled and there were a few neighbors who really helped us out and made a difference in our lives. I would like to hope I can spread some positive vibes to help others out too. Smiling can be infectious and is what drives me to keep on keeping on.
I also started Taco Fest. I would contract a taco truck to cater my birthday party and I figured that everyone can donate for a great cause, if I pay for the tacos. I did that four years in a row and then I was elected on the Bay View Neighborhood Association board and volunteered for two years.
2016 will be the return of Taco Fest since I'm free to dedicate my time to it and no longer have any board duties.
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: What is one guilty pleasure?
Firle: Corner bars. I love to hang out, have some beers and add no value to a conversation or maybe pepper it with some bad ideas.
OnMilwaukee / Too Much Metal: Name a Milwaukeean you would like to high five.
Firle: The Milverine of course!
Do you know a Milwaukee All-Star? OnMilwaukee.com and Too Much Metal are looking for true-hearted folks living in the city of Milwaukee who love what they do – and do it with zest and style. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com with recommendations.