Dr. Anne Hansen is a professor in the history department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She became a Pluralism Project affiliate in 2000 while teaching in the departments of history and anthropology at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. She worked with students and the Interfaith Center of Milwaukee through 2006 to collaboratively document the changing religious demography and diversity in Milwaukee.
At the time of this research, Dr. Hansen wrote of Milwaukee:
Milwaukee, which has historically served as an immigrant center for German Lutherans, Irish and Polish Catholics, and Serbian Othodox Chrisitans, has drastically altered its religious landscape as new immigrants including Hmong animists, South Asian and Middle Eastern Muslims, Indian Sikhs, Russian Jews, and Laotian Buddhists establish themselves in the city. Categorized as one of the two most segregated cities in the United States, Milwaukee has also experienced a major growth in African-American store-front churches, tabernacles and Islamic centers in the past several decades. Ojibwe and Cuban communities in Milwaukee are practicing their traditional Native-American and Afro-Caribbean religions, while many groups including Hmong, as well as Chinese and Hispanic immigrants, have established ethnic christian congregations, often in the very churches once occupied by Euro-American Christian groups. The city supports several American Buddhists communities and meditation centers, and Neo-Pagans are a growing presence as well.