Springfield, MO

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2018 40 Under 40: Catherine Bass Black, 34

Director of community affairs and talent acquisition, Bass Pro Shops

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Catherine Bass Black walks the talk as she provides leadership and creates impact in civic and community efforts through her work with Bass Pro Shops. Black helped develop an initiative for Bass Pro associates to volunteer, worked to design a philanthropy web-based application system for nonprofit donation requests and played a key role in the launch of the Bass Pro Cares Fund to help associates in need nationwide. Black says the fund, which provided support for more than 1,500 associates in 2017 – many of whom were impacted by hurricanes Harvey or Irma – is her proudest and most rewarding accomplishment. In addition to her role at Bass Pro, Black also advises the recruitment and hiring for the new Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium.

What are you doing to make the Ozarks better? I volunteer on the boards with several organizations, including Ozark Greenways and Junior League.

What is your best productivity hack? I schedule everything. If it’s not in my Outlook calendar, did it even happen?

What do you miss most about the 1990s? Waiting for film to be developed. It was exciting to get back developed pictures.

What did you learn the hard way? Being super busy and working late hours are not a badge of honor. Quality time spent is far more important than quantity of time spent. 

Have you ever met a celebrity? My husband and I spent a week with Michael Buble and his wife on our honeymoon.


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