What’s up with the ladybugs?
What’s up with the ladybugs?… a common question we get here at Burke Properties.
If you are unfamiliar, the corporate office for Burke Properties, Westbrook Management and a slew of other entities, is located at 622 N Water Street, which is formally known as the Milwaukee Building. CEO, John J Burke Jr., added the ladybugs to the facade in summer of 1999. Not a week goes by without a contractor, FedEx Driver, business contact or resident of one of our properties asking, Why do you have ladybugs on the outside of your building?
Well, before we could tell our story, or should I say, keep it secret, WUWM NPR reached out to us to find out the answer. Bubbler Talk is their forum for questions about the unusual in Milwaukee. Someone wrote in, intrigued by the ladybugs, and wanted to know the story behind them. We were contacted, and Wendy Burke (President and Daughter of Owner, John J Burke Jr.) shared her father’s story about the insects that scale the exterior.
You can hear Wendy give a first-hand account of the (story behind the bugs) Ladybug Legend here.
After Wendy shared her story with Rachel Owens of NPR, Rachel asked to visit our office. We took her on a tour and showed her around. Below, are some photographs of our corporate office.
Statutes by Rory Burke
Melba Zanoni, Keeper of the front desk has been with the company for over 17 years
Wendy Burke, President of Burke Properties
Wendy Burke and Riva Treasure holding a shirt based off the Milwaukee building