On March 1, 2001 a group of citizens concerned about invasive plants met in Eau Claire, Wisconsin to help create the Invasive Plant Council in Wisconsin. They approved the creation of such an entity. The following day, nearly 600 people attended the first Invasive Plants Conference in Wisconsin. The Council quickly evolved into the Invasive Plants Association of Wisconsin (IPAW). The first officers were President, Dan Undersander; Vice President, Rolf Utegaard; Treasurer, Tom Brock; and Secretary, Nancy Braker.
By April 2001 IPAW had been incorporated as an official entity in Wisconsin. Tax Exempt status was approved before the end of 2001. The first “Plants Out of Place” newsletter appeared in December 2001 with Jim Reinartz as editor. The IPAW website was also created in the inaugural year.