Avi Lank

Essayist, Freelance Writer

Avi Lank was an award-winning reporter and columnist at the Milwaukee Sentinel and Journal Sentinel for more than 35 years and is the co-author of The Man Who Painted the Universe, the story of a planetarium in the north woods of Wisconsin, published in 2015 by the Wisconsin Historical Society Press. He is an occasional panelist on the Interchange program on Milwaukee Public Television and his freelance work has appeared in Milwaukee magazine, among other places. He holds degrees in economics from Antioch College and journalism from Northwestern University and lives in Whitefish Bay.

Essay: Go, Cubs, Go!

Oct 27, 2016
Jamie Squire / Getty Images

In case you’d missed it – and it would be hard – the Chicago Cubs are trying to do something they haven’t done in 108 years – win a World Series. They haven’t even been to the Fall Classic for decades.  Lake Effect Avi Lank remembers someone who would truly appreciate this post-season:

Dmitry Nikolaev / Fotolia

Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank sees some unusual parallels between his own career and what Milwaukee is currently working through as a community:

Christopher Gregory / Getty Images

Presumptive Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump is due to meet with Republican leaders in Washington today.  At issue is whether they can bridge the policy and personality divides between the candidate and the party rank and file.

But Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank believes Democrats have just as daunting a task ahead of them:

Chris Connelly, flickr

All the concern about immigration and border security has Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank thinking about a time when, at least along the US/Canadian border, things were a little different.

Between Montreal, Quebec, and Syracuse, N.Y., there is a large river, high mountains and an international border. In the 1940s, when my Canadian father was courting my American mother, the border was the least of those barriers.

Essay: What Is it Worth?

Jan 13, 2016
NWFblogs / Flickr

Have you filled up your car at the gas station recently?  Really, if you’ve filled up any time in the last few months, the trip feels like a walk down memory lane, at least when you pay the bill.  But Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank says gas prices need to be viewed in a larger context:

Lynn Friedman, flickr

For almost a hundred years, the descendants of a German immigrant owned the meat company he founded in Chicago in 1904. But the Oscar Mayer company was eventually sold – several times – and is now owned by Kraft Heinz. Its headquarters are currently in Madison. But as Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank notes, that, too, will soon change.

Essay: Big League

Jun 16, 2015
Eric Wong / Flickr

Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank says the proposed new arena is emblematic of how things have changed in Wisconsin politics:

Backbone Campaign / Flickr

As negotiations over the TPP are continuing, it’s generating some unusual political alliances.  Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank surprised himself a little when he considered the trade deal’s merits:

Joseph / Flickr

April first is a day when many news outlets will sneak in at least one false story in the spirit of April Fool’s fun.  There’s one story in the news today, though, that Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank wishes weren’t true:

Dave Reid / Flickr

Before Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank was a journalist, he earned an economics degree. As such, he has taken a hard look at Governor Walker's proposal to make cuts to the UW system.

WikiCommons image

Sunday is the solstice, an important marker in the progression of the year.

Essay: Dollar Bill

Dec 2, 2014
Richard Cahan / Flickr

The next time you open your wallet to pay for something with cash, it’s likely you will have a couple of 'ones' in there. They are the lowest denomination that US paper money comes in, and Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank hopes we keep it that way.

Essay: John Doe

Sep 10, 2014
Gateway Technical College, Flickr

Lawyers arguing on both sides of the John Doe investigation were in Chicago Tuesday as prosecutors sought to restart the investigation, which was brought to a halt in May.  


The immigration crisis involving thousands of undocumented immigrant children has fallen off the front page. But as Lake Effect essayist Avi Lank notes, that doesn’t mean it’s gone away.

When U.S. Senator Ron Johnson announced he was suing the federal government over the Affordable Care Act, a lot was made over the difference of opinion within Republican circles over the suit.