Brenner Receives Leadership Award

The recipient of the 2016 Donald G. Jones Leadership Alumni Award can be compared to the favorite children’s story about The Little Engine That Could. Once you get to know Holly Brenner, Vice President of Strategic Development & Marketing for Agnesian HealthCare, it’s easy to see that she loves to take on new opportunities and help to forge new roads – all for the benefit of the community she serves.

An early mentor of Brenner gave her some great advice about getting involved: Jump in and jump in with both feet! Brenner has done just that by genuinely giving of her time and talents. Whether behind the scenes making things happen or leading an initiative from start to finish, Brenner is known for her incredible passion and innovative approach.

A Fond du Lac native, Brenner first joined Agnesian HealthCare in 2011. Her work as a leader within Agnesian HealthCare has offered her ample opportunity to be involved and engaged in our community. “Having grown up in Fond du Lac and having lived here for the majority of my life, I thought I had a pretty solid handle on ‘how things work around here.’ And then I enrolled in Leadership Fond du Lac. Leadership Fond du Lac exposed me to so many things going on in and around the community that I had been unaware of. I think my biggest takeaway was just how much great work happens here every day and how much of it is done without people really knowing about it. If we’re open to seeing and acknowledging it, Fond du Lac offers a lot to be proud of,” stated Brenner.

Brenner’s hard work has shown over the past several years as Brenner has been recognized for these outstanding awards: YMCA Volunteer of the Year in 2010, Cheers for Volunteers Outstanding Agency Volunteer Award in 2011, YMCA Leadership Award in 2014, Top Hospital Marketer in 2014, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2014, Young Professionals of Fond du Lac Future 5 Recipient in 2014 and Young Professional of the Year in 2014.

In addition to professional accomplishment, Brenner’s volunteer resume is extensive. Upon completion of her MBA, Brenner made a deliberate decision to dedicate even more of herself to volunteerism. She currently serves as treasurer and board member of the Association of Commerce; board member and past chair of the Fond du Lac Family YMCA; board member of the Fond du Lac Convention and Visitor Bureau; chairperson of the Fond du Lac Community visioning and strategic planning initiative, Envision Fond du Lac; member and past office holder of Service League of Fond du Lac, program committee member of Noon Rotary and marketing committee member of Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts.

Brenner gives back to the Fond du Lac community because she is committed to the future of Fond du Lac. Brenner said, “My husband and I are raising our family here and we have a vested interest in making sure our great community thrives now and well into the future. As such, I am committed to continuing my active involvement with organizations and non-profit agencies that are working collaboratively to build an even healthier, more engaged and thriving community.”

Brenner would like to leave these words of advice behind for the Leadership Fond du Lac Class of 2016: “Believe in something and go for it. Fly to Jupiter or lasso the moon. Don’t be afraid to think big and to put yourself out there. Get involved with things that energize you. And, do yourself a favor, and don’t lead with ‘what’s in it for me?’ More times than not, you will get far more out of a volunteer opportunity than you put in. But that’s only if you are truly invested and are willing to commit.”


Holly Brenner, 2016 recipient of the Donald G. Jones Leadership Alumni Award was recognized for her outstanding service to the Fond du Lac community. Pictured from left: Tom Herre, Interim President and CEO of the Fond du Lac Area Association of Commerce; Holly Brenner, Vice President of Strategic Development & Marketing for Agnesian HealthCare; Lesley Manowske, Director of Leadership Fond du Lac