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Richard Ollis is the 2024 Springfieldian Award recipient.
SBJ file
Richard Ollis is the 2024 Springfieldian Award recipient.

Ollis honored as 2024 Springfieldian

Posted online

Businessperson and civic leader Richard Ollis tonight was recognized with the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce's annual Springfieldian Award.

Ollis was presented with the honor at the chamber's annual meeting at the Oasis Hotel & Convention Center, according to a news release. The Springfieldian Award is the chamber’s top honor and is given annually to an individual with strong community service, excellence in their field and dedication to improving quality of life for Springfield residents.

“Our Springfieldian is not a status quo person; he is a change agent,” said Jim Anderson, former Springfield chamber president, in the release. “He’s innovative, he’s creative. He leads by example and does the right thing.”

Ollis is CEO of multigenerational insurance firm Ollis/Akers/Arney, and he recently completed his tenure as a two-term member of Springfield City Council. He's a founding board member of the Restore SGF homeownership initiative, and he's served as past board chair for the Springfield chamber and on boards such as the Springfield-Branson National Airport, Commerce Bank and the Safety Council of the Ozarks.

Ollis spoke of his time on council in an April 2023 Springfield Business Journal article. He said he considers an overarching win of his time on council that body’s focus on quality of place. That theme informed the $26 million Grant Avenue Parkway project to create a multimodal north-south route from Bass Pro Shops to downtown, as well as the daylighting of Jordan Valley Creek and the planning that is underway at Lake Springfield.

“I’m proud of our efforts, both publicly and privately, to create a quality of place that people want to live, work and raise their family in,” he said.

The annual Springfieldian recipient is chosen by a selection committee at the chamber after nominations are submitted. Last year's recipient was attorney and community volunteer Joe Carmichael, and former honorees include Great Southern Bancorp Inc. (Nasdaq: GSBC) President and CEO Joe Turner, developer Warren Davis, Springfield Underground leader Louis Griesemer and Hamra Enterprises founder Sam Hamra.

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