The annual 40 Under 40 awards were the first awards presented by Springfield Business Journal, launched in 1999 to recognize up-and-comers younger than 40 for their professional and civic accomplishments.
While the purpose of these awards hasn’t changed, there is something new about this year’s celebration – a partnership with Ozarks Food Harvest to raise money during the May 17 event to fight hunger.
This change brings 40 Under 40 in line with other events that double as community fundraisers – Most Influential Women supports Women in Need and Men of the Year helps the Good Samaritan Boys Ranch.
As you will note from the stories in this booklet, this is a group that likes to get things done, professionally and in the community. Our hope is that the honorees – and the people who turn out to celebrate their accomplishments – will throw their support behind Ozarks Food Harvest, a regional food bank that feeds families in need. As the result of many generous businesses in the Ozarks, there will be a benefit raffle during the 40 Under 40 event, with three prize packages. One is a Dozen Dates package, with certificates to area eating establishments. There’s also an overnight date package in Springfield and a Branson Getaway package, and raffle tickets will be $5 apiece at the event. That price might not sound like much, but given that Ozarks Food Harvest can use a $5 donation to buy 45 pounds of food, it’s clearly enough to make a difference. There also will be special recognition for those who choose to buy eight tickets and contribute $40 to the cause. Those donors will have access to the informally dubbed “bling bar” and be mentioned by name in a “thank you” ad after the event.
Come join us as we celebrate this year’s class of 40 Under 40, and while you’re at it, help Ozarks Food Harvest make sure those who need food will have it. You’ll have a chance to network with this group of 40 individuals who have notched some impressive accolades. In the meantime, you can learn more about them from the profiles in this booklet. We ask the 40 Under 40 nominees to tell us about what they’ve done, and this information is used by an independent panel of judges to choose the honorees. Once they’ve been selected, the editorial team gets to work, using those applications to put together the profiles. This year, our in-house efforts were assisted by Tresa McBee, a trusted contributing writer. Photography in this booklet is by staff photographer Aaron Scott. Join us in congratulating these 40 special individuals for all that they’ve achieved.Click here for full coverage of the 2012 40 Under 40.