Leslie Conklin of KPM CPAs PC earned the not-for-profit certificate from the American Institute of CPAs. With five years of accounting experience, she supervises the firm’s audit team. Conklin has a bachelor’s in accounting from Missouri State University and a bachelor’s in communication from Drury University.
Banking and Finance
Guaranty Bank promoted Sara Gugel to assistant vice president and Bank Secrecy Act and security officer from the role of electronic services officer. She has 17 years of banking experience and started as a teller at Guaranty Bank. Gugel holds a bachelor’s in business management from Evangel University.
Springfield area contractors Sean Thouvenot of Branco Enterprises Inc. and Doug Fronick of APAC-Central Inc. were elected as board officers for the Missouri chapter of the Association of General Contractors of America. Thouvenot is the chair-elect and Fronick is heavy/highway/infrastructure vice chair. The state organization represents over 500 commercial, industrial, heavy and highway contractors, industry partners and related firms.
Olsson Inc. promoted Springfield office leader Ron Mersch to regional leader over Missouri, Kansas, Iowa and Arkansas. He succeeds Sterling Cramer, who was appointed senior director of operations. Mersch held the post since 2012 and previously worked in city administration and economic development for the cities of Bolivar and Willow Springs.
Toth and Associates Inc. promoted professional engineers Shawn Barry and Matt Miller to vice presidents and shareholders. They’re credited with developing the civil engineering department into a core discipline for the firm. Barry and Miller have 15 years and 14 years of experience, respectively, in civil engineering projects and have worked together at Toth and Associates for seven years.
Evangel University promoted Erin Hedlun to director of public relations, succeeding the retiring Paul Logsdon. She joined the school in 2018 as a content specialist and now serves as spokesperson for Evangel and its seminary. Hedlun previously worked as public information officer for the Springfield-Greene County Office of Emergency Management, and she has a Master Public Information Officer certificate from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Homeland Security Department. Logsdon completed 33 years of service to the university in December.
Springfield-Greene County Office of Emergency Management hired Christine Morton as public information officer. She previously worked in news media, including stints at KY3 and Springfield Business Journal, and is responsible for the OEM’s marketing strategies, digital communications and community relations.
Gov. Mike Parson appointed Bobbi Lear, of Bolivar, as the Polk County clerk and Pam Robertson, of Mount Vernon, as the Lawrence County recorder of deeds. Lear has held managerial positions for Walmart and Woods Supermarket, and has worked as an underwriter for Polk County Mutual Insurance Co. and as a district manager for Western Shamrock Corp. Robertson was the interim recorder in the county and previously held the role from 1999 until her retirement in 2018.
Missouri Gov. Mike Parson selected Judge Jack Goodman, of Monett, to succeed retiring Judge Daniel Scott in the Missouri Court of Appeals’ Southern District. Goodman previously was Lawrence County Circuit Court presiding judge. He was one of three finalists for Scott’s position turned over to Parson.
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Jessica Burkland, a Missouri State University business instructor in the Department of Management, says now is a great time for innovators to start a small business for several reasons. Burkland, who owns Activate Consulting & Training and volunteers as a small business mentor for SCORE of Southwest Missouri, shares three things entrepreneurs should know.
Local Musician Barak Hill talks about how he started writing music and earning money from his skills. He says his first motivation to start making money was to get music to pay for itself.
Heather Kite, owner of startup business Rooted Deep Farms, talks about tough times during the winter of 2020-2021. She says determination was a necessary component that kept her going.
Jeramey and Julia Henson, co-owners of HM Dentworks Academy, discuss the importance of family in work-life balance. They say you can’t make up for the major life events. HM Dentworks Academy is also co-owned by Chris McWhirter.
Rachel Barks, owner of Artistry Pottery, talks about her struggle with PXE, or Pseudoxanthoma elasticum, a disease that affects the eyes. She says that despite her struggle, she is ultimately thankful.
Jessica Burkland, a Missouri State University business instructor in the Department of Management, talks about small business start-up trends in a post-pandemic year. Burkland, who owns Activate Consulting & Training and volunteers as a small business mentor for SCORE of Southwest Missouri, says startups that offer new services and products to help people work from home or that enhance mental health could find greater success.
Jim and Debbie Meinsen, co-owners of TCI Graphics, say the past year has been one of the toughest they have faced. Now in the company's 50th year, the couple says they learned a few things in 2020.
Charlie Rosenbury, president of Self-Interactive, calls on his experience in programming to illustrate lessons he has learned running a business and life in general. Springfield Business Journal's 90 Ideas is presented by Great Southern Bank.
Darline Mabins talks with SBJ’s Christine Temple about growing up after a tragic accident took the lives of her mother and older brother. Mabins is now the regional branch sales manager for Arvest Bank. No Ceiling is an SBJ podcast, going in depth with local women, sharing their journey to the top of their professions.
Caleb Scott, owner, coach and player for Queen City Insane Asylum semi-professional football team, talks about the ways that the team works to support each other on and off the field. Scott says you can’t force people to become leaders, they have to come naturally.