Springfield, MO

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SBJ photo by McKenzie Robinson

2021 40 Under 40: Cindy Beecher

Director of Administration, United Way of the Ozarks

Posted online

As the pandemic shifted her career, Cindy Beecher, 31, seized an opportunity to be a helper. At the United Way, she joined forces with fellow nonprofits to distribute $186,000 to meet community needs in spring and summer 2020. She also collected 100,000 face masks and shields for area nonprofit staff.

A return to her previous role at the United Way came after she was laid off in March 2020 from her remote job due to the upheaval of the travel industry.

But Beecher doesn’t sit back. She says what sets her apart is her “willingness to be that ‘someone’ to do ‘something.’”

That led to her proudest accomplishment, which was securing a grant to fund the United Academy. It brought 300 nonprofit professionals, board members and Springfield police officers together this year for two days of diversity development.

Beecher volunteers for Court Appointed Special Advocates and sits on the PFLAG Springfield board and Leadership Springfield alumni committee.

What about your job would shock people? Greg Burris’ calendar. It’s not for the faint of heart.

What did you learn the hard way? I am resilient. In 2020, I lost my job, my grandfather and my uncle to COVID-19. I also battled clinical depression until I found the right mix of therapy and medication.

Theme song? “Superbloom,” by MisterWives.

Most treasured possession? My passport. I have traveled to 22 countries on four continents and can’t wait to explore again.


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