Board of Directors

Rose Oswald Poels – Board Chair & Treasurer

Rose Oswald Poels is the President/CEO for the Wisconsin Bankers Association, the state’s largest financial industry trade association. She has worked for the WBA and the banking industry for over twenty years. As part of her work, she is a registered lobbyist advocating on behalf of Wisconsin banks with the Wisconsin congressional delegation as well as state elected officials. Regulatory advocacy is also a significant part of her work with state and federal banking regulators. She routinely speaks to the media, local civic groups and other organizations about the banking industry and has personally educated thousands of bankers over her career on a variety of banking compliance topics. Oswald Poels received her B.A. with honors from Michigan State University and her JD from the University of Wisconsin Madison Law School. She is a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin and the American Society of Association Executives. In addition to managing WBA, she is also Chairman of the board for WBA’s two subsidiaries, WBA EBC and FIPCO®, and currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Graduate School of Banking and its Prochnow Educational Foundation as well as the Board of Directors of Green Valley Enterprises, Inc.

Paul Adamski – Vice Chair & Secretary

Paul C. Adamski is the President and Chief Executive Officer for Pineries Bank in Stevens Point Wisconsin. Adamski held positions in Wisconsin’s financial services industry throughout his career, including Sentry Insurance, American Savings & Loan and the State Bank of Rosholt. Adamski additionally served as the Deputy Commissioner of Savings and Loans for the State of Wisconsin working to reassure Wisconsin consumers that state-chartered Savings and Loans were strong and healthy. Additional service includes President of the Portage Business Council, President of the Community Bankers of Wisconsin, Chicago Federal Reserve Bank Advisory Committee and on the State of Wisconsin College Savings Program Board (EdVest). In 2004, Adamski was presented with the Community Banker of the Year Award by the Community Bankers of Wisconsin.

Oliver Buechse – Director, Executive Consultant/Strategist

From February 2010 through January 2015 Oliver Buechse served as Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer at Associated Banc-Corp, where he was responsible for working collaboratively with senior managers throughout the organization on the company’s efforts in Strategy, Marketing, Communications and Community Involvement to best position Associated for future success. He has also served on the Executive Committee for Associated Banc-Corp. Prior to joining Associated, Buechse served as head of strategy at San Francisco-based Union Bank and was in charge of North American Vision and Portfolio Strategy for Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ, Union Bank’s parent company. He started his career at McKinsey & Company, working in the U.S, Germany, and Austria. Buechse holds a Ph.D. in Economic Psychology from the University of Klagenfurt/Austria. Buechse serves on the board of the New North in support of Economic Development efforts in North East Wisconsin.

Cathy Couey – Director

Cathy Couey is Chief Retail Officer of Security Financial Bank in Eau Claire, Wis. Couey began her career in radio but switched to banking after helping her hometown bank with an IT issue and being offered a job immediately after. Within a few years, she was leading the department. She eventually spearheaded a complete system overhaul, ushering in new systems such as online banking, cash management, remote deposits, bill pay, and more. Couey is an active member of the Wisconsin Bankers Foundation’s Financial Literacy Advisory Board and the Governor’s Council on Financial Literacy.

Christopher Piotrowski – Director

Christopher C. Piotrowski serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of Associated Banc-Corp. He leads strategic initiatives in marketing and brand management and is accountable for Associated’s public relations, corporate communications, customer experience, and corporate social responsibility efforts. Piotrowski also serves on the Executive Committee for Associated Banc-Corp. Piotrowski is widely regarded as a marketing executive with proven experience in balancing the art and science of marketing while designing, implementing, and measuring the effectiveness of multi-channel marketing campaigns. His more than 17 years of experience includes domestic and international markets serving both consumer and commercial clients. Prior to joining Associated, he held marketing positions at world-class organizations such as SC Johnson, MillerCoors, and Anheuser-Busch. Piotrowski holds a Master of Science degree in Economics from Marquette University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Ripon College. He is actively engaged in supporting the United Way, having served as co-Chair for the Company’s Southeast Wisconsin 2014 campaign. He has led efforts in support of the United Way through Associated community events in Green Bay and Milwaukee and cause marketing efforts across the Company’s three-state footprint.

Mike Semmann – Executive Director

Michael Semmann is the Senior Vice President and Chief Operations Officer for the Wisconsin Bankers Association (WBA) responsible for the strategy, oversight and implementation of the advocacy, marketing, public relations, and member services objectives for the Association.  Semmann also assists with the strategic planning functions of WBA Board of Directors and serves as a liaison to bank CEOs throughout Wisconsin.  He acts as an industry expert at Capitol hearings and keeps WBA members, opinion leaders and the media informed on key banking issues.  Semmann serves as the Executive Director for the WI Bankers Foundation dedicated to promoting financial literacy and research on behalf of Wisconsin’s banking industry. Prior to joining WBA, Semmann worked with the Wisconsin Builders Association and has over twenty years of experience as an association industry professional.  Semmann has a degree in Economics from the University of Wisconsin Madison. He is a member of the Wisconsin Society of Association Executives and the Association of Wisconsin Lobbyists.