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2010 40 Under 40: Kevin Grinder

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Anyone curious about how to make a living with an art degree need only to look as far as Kevin Grinder, who’s been doing just that for 10 years.

Early in his career, he taught courses in animation and electronic media for Missouri State University’s electronic arts degree program. He’s also spent time working for Las Vegas-based Mikohn Gaming Inc., where his duties included using market research for interactive design of games suich as Clue, Battleship and Trivial Pursuit.

Four years ago, he launched dotDigital Studios LLC, a full-service creative agency that assists small-business clients with print, radio and television advertising materials, Web site design and development.

“I help them bring in more clients, get their messages out, get elected and sell more merchandise,” he says. “The continuous referrals and kind words my clients pass along help me know that I am helping them succeed.”

Grinder had two main goals in mind when starting his company.

“The first was to bring world-class design to small businesses at rates that would allow them to compete with large businesses,” he says. “The second was to run my business debt-free. I have been able to achieve and maintain those goals for nearly four years now.”

In 2009, dotDigital was recognized by the Association of Fundraising Professionals as Outstanding Small Business of the Year for it’s impact on community nonprofits, and Grinder says that honor is his proudest accomplishment.

Other notable accomplishments include Addy awards from the American Advertising Federation of the Ozarks for print work for March of Dimes and the Web site for Dickerson Park Zoo.

“Kevin embodies the spirit of entrepreneurship and community-mindedness by employing local talent and giving his time and talents to nonprofit organizations like Friends of the Zoo and March of Dimes,” says Melinda Arnold, public relations and marketing director for Dickerson Park Zoo.

Grinder says it’s also important to him that he shares his knowledge, successes and mistakes with those who could benefit and learn from them. He has taught animation and art to gifted high-school students through Missouri Fine Arts Academy, and he’s also volunteered at Discovery Center, where he taught the principals of animation to students in the fourth, fifth and sixth grades.

“My philosophy is that encouraging and facilitating the success of others will benefit not only the individual, but the community as a whole,” he says. “For me, that’s a worthwhile endeavor.”[[In-content Ad]]


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