Marissa Weaver doesn’t just volunteer, she takes charge.
A collaborative thinker, Weaver is best when immersing herself in the task, helping that organization grow and pushing the envelope on what is expected. Those talents are best showcased through her work with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks and Leadership Springfield.
“I didn’t just get involved in one small aspect of the organization, I stepped into leadership roles,” she says. “I brought knowledge and became a part of the organization.”
Her statement hits the nail on the head. After five years serving as a Big Sister, helping facilitate training for staff and recruit volunteers, Weaver left her 13-year career with Missouri State University to take on the role of executive vice president for the mentoring organization.
Her time in the university setting, most recently as associate director of student engagement at MSU, and through her own studies – Weaver holds a bachelor’s in mass communications from Southeast Missouri State University, a master’s in counseling and student development from Eastern Illinois University and a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Missouri-Columbia – prepared her for the role.
However, it is her endeavors with Leadership Springfield Weaver credits most and counts the enhancements made to the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce’s leadership arm as her proudest civic accomplishments. Weaver served as the group’s signature chair for two years.
“When I inherited the position, things were going OK. Participants weren’t necessarily complaining, but I could see so many opportunities to enhance the program,” she says. “During this time, we shifted from having the same facilitators for our retreats for almost 20 years, to a new curriculum and new facilitators.”
She also championed the connection to the social capital research being conducted locally to better understand the group’s impact. It was an extensive time commitment for Weaver, but one that cemented her role as a local leader.
“I would serve on any team Marissa was leading,” says Alina Lehnert, a fellow Leadership Springfield board member. “Why? She is trustworthy, ethical, doesn’t want to keep things status quo and has the ability to see community needs, rally the capital and mobilize resources to get things done.”
Weaver’s skills also materialize through her many other community efforts. In addition to serving her sixth year as a Leadership Springfield board member, she also is a six-year member of the Hospitality Resource Panel, a branch of the Urban District’s Alliance, is a member of The Network and recently served as president of the Lighthouse Child & Family Development Center Parent and Teacher Organization. She is a Springfield Citizen’s Police Academy graduate and served on the 2015 Impacting Poverty Commission.
A health care worker became a first-time business owner; a home baker decided to pursue a longtime dream of starting her own business; and Springfield-based Premier Choice Tax and Accounting Solutions LLC expanded its reach in Greene County.
Aaron Elliott never imagined he would get into medical device or create a self-defense fitness-based business. Now the co-owner of F8 Fitness and Self-Defense at the age of 46, he says Dr. Seuss nailed it on the head with “Oh, The Places You’ll Go.” He says as long as you have the passion for it, you can do anything.
Senior Vice President and Commercial Loan Manager of Arvest Bank Steve Kelly says now is the time to start looking at your financial situation—such as where you can cut back or prepare yourself for economic recovery.
John Lopez, managing member at Old Route 66 Dispensary, talks through the Dispensary’s decisions to manufacture and transport its own goods. Lopez says the ultimate goal is to cut the cost of their product by around 30-50%. John Lopez is a Springfield Business Journal 2020 12 People You Need to Know.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a variety of impacts on the labor force, with some businesses doing well and others taking a hit. Elizabeth Hurts, business development manager at HR Advantage, says as much as we look forward to moving on, the effects of the pandemic aren’t over.
Mackenzie Scherer, small business technology consultant and owner of Mackenzie Scherer, LLC, discusses how scheduling software can help you keep ahead of your to-do list. Technology like chatbots and email templates...
Molly McCleary, owner and farmer of Maypop Flower Farm, says she’s seen edible flowers used many ways in different areas of the country. McCleary was initially contacted by several bakers, but says …
Carley Joy, sales and marketing director of SafeSpace Company says she and her father, CEO Rick Williams, have an honest and open communication style. Williams says the key is never to take things …
Brad Noble, co-founder of Art of Everyone, says art is the one thing that remains open to expression. He says art goes beyond the activity and helps build connections between people. Springfield …
Carol Taylor, former president of Evangel University, tells features editor Christine Temple about the new challenges she faced leading students, staff and faculty through a year of learning in a …
Michelle Romero, owner of PKD Venue, says because of her busy schedule, using social media has helped her marketing efforts. Incorporating your journey, including struggles as well as victories, can …