When the Metropolitan Club was founded back in 1991, it had the best view in the entire city. Not much has changed in that regard 25 years later. 

“Imagine a picture postcard view of the panorama that is the city skyline with the Roebling Bridge in the forefront,” says Daniel Bockrath, president of the Metropolitan Club. “It’s literally breathtaking. I make a point once a day to come down and soak it in because it never gets old. It has the most unique view of the city, the river, the bridges… In any room you go, the view is breathtaking.” 

While the great view may not have changed much, the vision of the private business club has in the last few years—especially when Bockrath became president this summer. His goal is to appeal to the next generation of young business leaders, starting with something small and simple: relaxing the strict dress code. 

“[The club] had a dress code that didn’t allow denim. I looked at that and said we need to change with the times,” says Bockrath. “By relaxing the dress code, that makes the club more appealing to that demographic. We accept denim that’s accepted in the workplace.” 

He also says that he is trying to evolve the club when it comes to technology. For example, the bandwidth has been expanded for members who want to use the club as an alternative workspace where they can do conferencing and business meetings. Bockrath also wants the club to include people from all walks of life. 

“The club has always been focused on community inclusion and diversity. I want to expand on that,” says Bockrath. “Right now, our membership is a little out of balance. I envision this next generation of membership coming from the LGBT and multiethnic communities, merging women entrepreneurs and young millennials working downtown.”

He says his longer-term goal is to generate meaningful income for the two charities they serve: Be Concerned, one of the largest free food pantries in Northern Kentucky, and Life Learning Center, which serves to educate “at-risk” citizens. 

“The annual proceeds from the memberships benefit those two organizations. That’s really rare for the kind of club we are to have that close connection with local charities,” says Bockrath. 

There is an annual event at the club called the Metropolitan Awards, granted to local citizens who have gone above and beyond toward improving the lives of other local citizens. 

“We acknowledge them with an annual dinner,” says Bockrath. “The club’s raised over a million dollars since the event started. The club is very tightly connected to philanthropy. When members are enjoying the club and using it to the full capacity, they’re impacting their community.”

Another important component of the club is the vision of founder Bill Butler: bridging the bridges and bringing business leaders from Ohio and Kentucky together. 

“Uniting those stakeholders from other different spheres is at the center of what this club is all about,” says Butler. “It’s a catalytic center that leads to progress in the community. It’s more than a place to meet and greet and eat.”