Antigo Parent Highlights Importance of Child Care for Businesses and Community Growth in Langlade County

The Dream Up! Langlade County Taskforce, in partnership with the Langlade County Economic Development Corporation (LCEDC) hosted a community roundtable event earlier this spring where local businesses and community leaders discussed the impact of child care on the local economy. One of the most compelling presentations came from Logan, a new parent, and local College Instructor.

Logan’s speech focused on the importance of quality child care, not just for families, but for local businesses and the greater communities in Langlade County.

Growth Through Quality Care:

Logan emphasized that access to child care is crucial for community growth. He also shared his personal experience, stating: “Before becoming a parent, child care wasn’t a top priority. My thoughts were that people having children should have a plan for care…as I reflect, I realize that was a shortsighted and ignorant point of view.”

He then continued by highlighting the challenges he and his wife faced in finding child care: When we found out we were expecting, we started reaching out to providers seven months before Sofia was born…that’s before the first ultrasound. And despite our efforts to be proactive, there were no openings until three months after she was born, and that was only because the Antigo Child Care was expanding their infant room from 4 to 8. We were very blessed to say the least.”

Logan and his wife’s experience, as two full-time workers who moved to Antigo without family support, underscores the essential role child care plays in fostering economic growth and allowing parents to pursue careers.

Beyond Paychecks: Attracting and Retaining Talent

Logan, who interacts with many young parents in his role as an instructor, pointed out a key factor in attracting and retaining talent: work-life balance.

He noted that today’s workforce, unlike previous generations, prioritizes more than just high wages. Businesses that offer benefits and a company culture that supports family needs are more likely to attract and retain top talent.

Logan stated: “The students of today, and workforce of tomorrow, are not as motivated by money as the generations before. You can offer higher wages, but that doesn’t mean you will land and retain these employees long-term…. It is not uncommon for my students and past graduates to say they would take a lower wage if there were better benefits and company culture supporting their family goals.”

The LCEDC recognizes child care assistance as a rising trend in employee benefits and actively collaborates with local employers to develop these programs to make care more affordable for parents.

Investing in Child Care Benefits the Community

Logan also stressed that affordable child care is a necessity, not just for young families, but for the entire community. He urged that strong families are essential for a thriving community, stating, “Without child care the challenge of parenting is even greater.” He then continued to say: “Fostering the growth of families and children is one of the most noble professions yet underappreciated by almost everyone until you need those services.”

He then linked affordable child care to a community’s ability to attract young families: “Areas struggling to retain its younger population…need affordable child care as a necessity, if you want young families to be invested in this town.”

The Dream Up! Taskforce aims to remove child care accessibility as a barrier for potential employees by providing funding, mentorships, and other resources to aspiring child care providers who want to enter this field.

A Call to Action for Collective Support

Logan concluded his speech by urging stakeholders in the community to come together and support the businesses and workers providing child care in Langlade County. He believes bolstering the future of our community depends on ensuring access to quality child care. Growth is not easy, and there will always be growing pains and struggles… together let’s grow, sacrifice, and step up to do what needs to be done”.

Logan’s story is a real-life example of why the Dream Up! Langlade County Taskforce was formed. This taskforce, made up of local women from area businesses, along with the non-profit LCEDC, are committed to fostering a strong economic environment in Langlade County by making quality child care more affordable and accessible. Access to quality child care is not just a family concern, but a critical factor for business growth and overall community well-being.

Help our community thrive, connect with Langlade County Economic Development Corporation’s Executive Director, Angie Close, to learn how you and your business can be part of the solution.

Call: 715-623-2085
Email: AClose@co.langlade.wi.us
Office: 312 Forrest Ave. Antigo, WI 54409


The Dream Up! task force is working to change the child care concept in Langlade County by:

  • Connecting philanthropic community partners and businesses with existing child care programs.
  • Providing aspiring child care providers with local mentors, recourses, and funding for early childhood education classes and training.
  • Advocating for sustainable child care funding beyond parent fees.
  • Educating our community on the current child care crisis while looking ahead to the future.