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McKenzie Robinson | SBJ

2021 Men of the Year: Jeff Brossard-Sims

Court Appointed Special Advocates of Southwest Missouri

Posted online

Jeff Brossard-Sims has done many things over the course of his professional life.

While the roles vary widely, the thread that runs through them is people.

For many years, he worked in patient access at hospitals, including Mercy Springfield Communities, where he was a department director. While working in that capacity, Brossard-Sims rose to the role of president within the National Association of Healthcare Access Management.

After leaving Mercy, Brossard-Sims became a consultant, traveling as much as 95% of the year. While he scored many successes – including turning one Kansas hospital’s department around entirely – he and his husband eventually came to the conclusion the traveling was too much. Brossard-Sims wanted the opportunity to better serve the Springfield community.

He then obtained his real estate license. In the five years since changing careers, Brossard-Sims found abundant volunteering opportunities and yet another career path.

He explains: “Shortly after I began volunteering with CASA, I learned of an open staff position within the organization. I distinctly remember commenting on what an amazing opportunity that would be for someone. I never really thought about it being for me.”

After some nudging from a friend, Brossard-Sims in 2020 got the job as an advocate supervisor for Court Appointed Special Advocates of Southwest Missouri.

Since joining CASA, Brossard-Sims says he’s particularly proud of a project he leads that is designed to better embrace diversity.

“Statistically, we know that children from the LGBTQ community are overrepresented in foster care. Additionally, the numbers of foster parents and biological parents that identify as LGBTQ is increasing,” he says.

To ensure an inclusive environment, CASA is participating in the 2021 Human Rights Campaign’s All Children, All Families Program. The effort promotes inclusive LGBTQ policies and affirming practices among child welfare agencies. Agencies are assessed on seven benchmarks: nondiscrimination, staff training, rolling out the welcome mat, parenting best practices, youth best practices, sustainability and capacity building, and innovation and leadership.

After assessment, agencies are ranked on a three-tier system: building, solid or innovative. CASA has attained the solid tier, and Brossard-Sims hopes to soon become innovative.

After hours, Brossard-Sims spends time volunteering, even still with CASA. He currently is working with a 14-year-old boy and his 6-year-old sister who have faced extraordinary challenges. The boy especially struggled, so Brossard-Sims connected with the boy’s foster parents, the school district and his family support team to get the teen the help he needed.

“He really began to blossom after this,” Brossard-Sims says. “I am very proud to say that he finished out his seventh grade with all A’s on his report card. Now when we talk, he likes to discuss what he wants to be when he grows up and he talks about going to college.”

Brossard-Sims also volunteers for the Gathering Tree, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks and Springfield Black Tie.

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