Springfield, MO

2017 40 Under 40 Honoree: Matt Crouse, 37

Posted online
Matt Crouse puts Leslie Knope to shame. He’s worked in Nixa Parks & Recreation since he was 15, but always had his eye on being director. He realized that goal three years ago and has increased participation rates by over 56 percent since taking the reins. Like fictional deputy director Knope on the show “Parks and Recreation”, Crouse may never sleep. He also teaches continuing education classes at the Parks and Recreation State Conference, is a member of Nixa Rotary Club, Nixa Chamber of Commerce and Nixa Optimist Club. He coordinates parks and recreation efforts with local master gardeners, Nixa Public Schools and businesses. He’s also a graduate of the National Parks and Recreation Revenue School.

What was your first job? My first real job was with Nixa Parks & Recreation at age 15.  I worked as a canoe/kayak instructor. I also taught backpacking, orienteering and refereed soccer and basketball games.

What about your job would shock clients? The lack of park land available for a community of our size is definitely one of the issues that surprises people. Nixa has grown so fast that we are still playing catch-up in this area.

What did you learn the hard way? To pace myself. I am a person that likes to give my all, all the time. This can be a good thing, but it can also mean moving too fast and missing things.

What historical figure do you identify with most? Theodore Roosevelt – he is credited with starting our National Parks System and protecting our beautiful open spaces.


No comments on this story |
Please log in to add your comment
Editors' Pick

Crossroads in Republic ripe for industrial park

Two buildings in a budding Republic industrial park just might be the welcome mat officials need.

Most Read
SBJ Live logo
Training Bootcamp: Training Needs Assessment

All workplace problems have root causes. When will training be the solution? Sherry Coker, OTC Center for Workforce Development business development director, provides you the framework of a training needs assessment, which will uncover the root causes of a workplace problem and help you determine if training is the solution. A download is available at with a complete outline for an effective training needs assessment. This is sponsored content. Duration: 2:29

Don’t Micro-Manage Are you guilty of micromanaging your employees? “If we’re going to require them to be that educated when they come to work for us, should we not let them do their job? They should know so much …
Seek Wisdom from Many “My whole life goal is to change the world, one connection at a time,” says Keisha Mabry. Mabry, who is an author, speaker, and social entrepreneur, says she had a “quarter-life crisis” and …
DNA Uncovers Best Version of You A simple swab of the inside of your cheek can lead to optimizing your nutrition and fitness program, personal medication profile, in addition to your ancestry. According to Austin O’Reilly, owner …
Booked - Go Back to the Basics “You’ve gotta go back to the basics,” says Larry Peterson, Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity of Springfield Missouri. Peterson says he gains leadership advice from General Ulysses S. …