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Protecting Wisconsin's checkbook. Fighting for rural communities.  Promoting our local values.

Personal Profile

Howard Marklein was raised on a dairy farm in Wilson Creek in rural Spring Green.  He is the oldest of five children. Howard attended St. Luke's and St. John's Grade Schools. Howard graduated from River Valley High School in Spring Green in 1972. He was a National Honor Society member, graduated in the top ten percent of his class, and was a three-sport athlete.

Howard graduated from UW-Whitewater in 1976 with a BBA in accounting.  He worked various jobs through college to pay for his education and keep his student loans to a minimum.  Howard worked for Virchow Krause during his junior and senior years in college.

After graduation from college, Howard worked for First Wisconsin National Bank of Milwaukee (now US Bank). In 1978, he was recruited by Virchow Krause and began his public accounting career in the Dodgeville office.  He purchased his first house in Dodgeville at age 23. After passing the CPA exam and completing the experience requirement, Howard obtained his CPA certificate in 1979. In 1987, Howard received the Outstanding Recent Alumni Award from UW-Whitewater.

Howard accepted a promotion and transfer to the Whitewater and Fort Atkinson offices of Virchow Krause in 1980. He was promoted to partner in the firm in 1984. In recent years, his practice has been focused on the forensic accounting area and white collar crime investigations, and Howard  enjoys lecturing frequently at colleges on forensic accounting. He is also credentialed as a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE).

Howard is married to Peggy, a registered nurse. Howard is the father of Nicole and William, and three stepchildren. Howard has five grandchildren.

State Service

Howard was first elected to the State Assembly in 2010. While in the State Assembly, he served as the Chairman of the Assembly Committee on Ways & Means and the Vice-Chair of the Joint Audit Committee. During his time as a state representative, he authored multiple bills to reduce regulatory burden on businesses and promote honest budgeting. Along with his colleagues in the State Assembly, he authored a constitutional amendment to require the state budget be prepared on the basis of generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP).

Howard was elected to the State Senate in 2014 and re-elected in 2018.


In the State Senate, he currently serves as Co-Chair of the Joint Committee on Finance, Vice Chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Tourism and as a member of the Joint Committee on Employment Relations, Joint Legislative Audit Committee and the Joint Legislative Council.

He has been appointed to the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority Board of Directors.

Leadership Ability

In addition to Howard's leadership position at Virchow Krause (now Baker Tilly), he has significant experience in leading a number of civic and community organizations.  Howard was President of the UW-Whitewater National Alumni Association, and was elected President of the UW-Whitewater Foundation Board of Directors.  He served as President of both the Whitewater Area Chamber of Commerce, and the Fort Atkinson Chamber of Commerce.

Howard was President of the Fort Atkinson Rotary Club.  He was the inaugural chair of the Whitewater Relay for Life. For eighteen years Howard served as Chair of the Finance Committee of St. Patricks Catholic Church in Whitewater. He also was President of the Church's Endowment Fund Board of Directors.

Howard's Values are your rural values.

Many of the values that Howard relies on today were learned on the family farm in Spring Green where he learned the value of hard work.  Howard understands that an individual can compensate for a lack of certain skills by exerting extra effort.


Howard also learned on the farm that neighbors help neighbors in need. He knows that neighbors, friends and family help each other not because of a government program, but because it is the right thing to do.


Howard believes that informed citizens make wise decisions. Some of the best resource allocation decisions are being made at kitchen tables by families every day. He trusts the people who are living in our communities, running businesses, volunteering and leading among us. He wants to know how you think state government can better serve our communities because you are in them, every day, living with the decisions made in Madison.


Howard treasures the quality of the education he received, and is grateful for the opportunities that his education presented to him. 

Howard believes the family is the most important unit in our society today.  He believes that our society's success, or failure, can be attributed, in large part, by the strength of our families and public policy should support the family.

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