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Springfield, MO

Newsmakers: June 5-11, 2017

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Architecture
Butler, Rosenbury & Partners Inc. added Brandon Roellig as an intern architect. He graduated from Drury University with a master’s of architecture and served as a student intern at the company during his fifth year of school.

Art
The Springfield Art Museum gave Monroe City artist Brenda Benson the Kenneth M. Shuck Memorial Award for her entry, “Purely Spectral,” in the 56th annual Watercolor USA exhibition. Judged by Watercolor USA Honor Society President Laurin McCracken, Benson received a $3,000 prize.

Banking & Finance
Guaranty Bank added Jeremy Ray to the bank’s commercial lending team as senior vice president and commercial relationship manager. He has 26 years of banking experience, most recently as a commercial lender for Central Bank.

Forbes recognized Arvest Bank as one of America’s Best Largest Employers for 2017. The bank ranked No. 208 out of 500 businesses nationwide based on employee satisfaction surveys.

Education
The Missouri School Boards’ Association gave the Nixa Public Schools’ Board of Education a 2017 Outstanding Board of Education Award for Teaching, Learning and Assessment. Nixa was one of 16 awarded the top honor out of 520 statewide.

Government
The Greene County Democratic Central Committee elected Chris Keaton as treasurer to succeed Wes Zongker, who recently moved into the chairman role. Keaton will complete a term ending in August 2018.

Springfield Assistant Fire Chief of Operations David Pennington was promoted to fire chief, succeeding David Hall. Pennington began his fire service as a volunteer firefighter in Logan-Rogersville in 1994 and joined the Springfield Fire Department in 1998. He served as Springfield’s interim fire chief during a nationwide search.

The Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau promoted Sean Dixon to marketing director, Steve Ross to assistant marketing director and Shelly Grauberger to finance and administration manager. Dixon began working at the CVB in 2010 as interactive media manager, and Ross joined in 2012 as a graphic designer. Grauberger, the previous marketing coordinator, succeeds the retiring Karen Smith.

The Springfield CVB also hired Tonia Castaneda as marketing assistant. She previously worked as volunteer coordinator and membership assistant for Ozarks Public Broadcasting.

Law
Retired Lathrop & Gage LLP partner Gary Cunningham was named Distinguished Attorney at the 2017 Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association’s Law Day luncheon. Others honored were Amanda Brown, staff attorney for Legal Services of Southwest Missouri, for the Equal Access to Justice Award and Kathleen O’Dell, community relations director for the Springfield-Greene County Library District, for the Liberty Bell Award.

Municipal
The American Public Power Association granted the Nixa Electric Utility a platinum level Reliable Public Power Provider designation for reliable and safe service. The three-year designation was presented during the association’s annual Engineering & Operations Technical Conference in San Antonio.

The Ozark Region Workforce Development Board received the 2017 Local Excellence Award in Partnership at The Missouri Association of Workforce Development conference. The award is designed to promote activities under the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. Also, Sally Payne, assistant director for Springfield’s Department of Workforce Development, was recognized with the 2017 Keystone Award for providing the highest level of meritorious service behind the scenes.

Nonprofit
The Dollar General Literacy Foundation awarded over $170,000 in literacy grants to Missouri nonprofits, libraries and schools. Locally, Family Life Community Services, North Point Church and the Henderson, Sertoma and Stalnaker units of the Boys & Girls Clubs received a combined $22,710.

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