As a small-business owner and a cancer survivor, Brooke Perkins Cinalli is no stranger to hard work.
She didn’t let two bouts with Hodkgin’s Lymphoma derail her professional goals. Except for chemotherapy treatment days, she didn’t miss a single day of work while going through a second round of cancer treatment, and she continued all projects on schedule – even completing a two-day certification test for National Council for Interior Design Qualification, taking herself to treatment between test sections.
“My drive to stay relevant in a field that is ever-changing pushed me to not only beat my sickness, but to excel in the workplace that I love,” Cinalli says.
After graduating cum laude from Missouri State University in 2002 with a bachelor’s in interior design, Cinalli began her career working with firms in Springfield and Kansas City before opening Nixa-based B. Cinalli Designs in 2008.
Among the projects she has worked on are Silver Dollar City’s Culinary and Craft School and the park’s 2010 project, the $6.8 million Tom & Huck’s RiverBlast. She also completed design work for recent renovations to Showboat Branson Belle and two Springfield-Greene County Library District branches – on Park Central Square and in Republic.
“My hope is that I’ve made people’s experiences with our public libraries more positive and enjoyable. The library district recently told me that after the opening of the new Republic branch, there was a dramatic increase in the number of patrons. They also told me that they never expected so many people to frequent the Park Central branch,” Cinalli said.
Cinalli, who received the 2004 New Design Professional of the Year Award from Hospitality Magazine in Las Vegas, knows her clients count on her, and she doesn’t take that responsibility lightly.
“Whether my client is a couple building the home they’ve saved for and dreamed of for years, or the county asking me to make the most of their tax dollars and design a public library, I feel the weight of their trust,” she says.
The mother of two young children, Cinalli also finds time to volunteer her skills for various projects, including the “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” house built in the Ozarks in 2009, the Pregnancy Care Center’s new facility and the design for a children’s library in Jordan Valley Community Health Center. Through it all, she aims to set an example for others.
“Walking the tightrope of the modern woman, balancing responsibility (in) my arms, in my hands, teeth and on top of my head – sometimes on the tip of my nose, too – I hold my business, my home, my husband and children as my top priorities,” she says.Click here for full coverage of the 2011 40 Under 40.