Cities often recognize the best and brightest. They promote the most influential, the most successful, the most powerful and the most glamorous. Yawn.

Madison is home to a strikingly rich population of innovators, creators, doers and dreamers. They are thinkers and makers driven by curiosity and inspired by beauty. They are entrepreneurs, educators, growers, healers and so much more. And they are artists and performers, writers and players. And together they make up the M List.

This is not a list of the Top or the Best. It’s not the People of the Year. But it is a group of people doing really interesting things in varying ways, and they help make Madison the special place it is. This is the sixth year we’ve published the M List — people you should know, chosen by the editors of Madison Magazine. As always, we enlist some of our friends to offer suggestions. This year that included Brenda Baker, Madison Children’s Museum director of exhibits and an artist in her own right; Mark Fraire, Dane County director of Cultural Affairs and Dane Arts director; Brennan Nardi, Madison Community Foundation communications director and former Madison Magazine editor; Katie Vaughn, UW–Madison senior university relations specialist and former Madison Magazine arts and managing editor; and Karin Wolf, Madison Arts program administrator.


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