Banking and Finance
Ozark Bank hired Tim Austin as senior vice president and commercial lender at its Nixa branch. With a background in agricultural lending and 30 years of banking experience, he most recently worked at Legacy Bank & Trust Co. in Sparta. Austin is responsible for the cultivation of new business relationships, loan portfolio management and community involvement.
Commerce Bank was recognized by Forbes Magazine as one of the World’s Best Banks for 2019 and ranked second among Missouri-based banks. Out of 415 banks in 23 countries on the list, Commerce Bank ranked 41st in the nation. Forbes surveyed more than 40,000 customers and evaluated banks on trust, customer service, digital services, terms and conditions, and financial advice.
Greg DeLong, senior vice president and financial adviser at Morgan Stanley’s Springfield Wealth Management office, was named to Forbes Magazine’s 2019 list of America’s Best-in-State Wealth Advisors, ranking No. 36 in Missouri.
Branco Enterprises Inc. earned a second-place finish for safety excellence in the General Contractor Division during the Midwest Construction Safety Conference & Expo in Blue Springs. Branco was selected by a panel of five independent judges during the 12th annual program.
The Missouri Association of School Administrators selected Springfield Public Schools Superintendent John Jungmann for the 2019 Robert L. Pierce Award. A committee of peers selected him from nominees in each of the eight MASA districts. Jungmann, who joined SPS in 2014, was noted as students in learning through project-based environments and developing the Envisioning Excellence process to involve community members.
Nixa Public Schools selected David Kelly as head principal for Nixa High School, Josh Bennett as assistant principal for High Pointe Elementary and Emily Myers as assistant principal at John Thomas School of Discovery and Inman Intermediate. Kelly succeeds Mark McGehee, who was promoted to executive director of human resources. Bennett follows Mandy Beckler, who was hired as principal of Logan-Rogersville’s primary school. Myers succeeds Garrett Lowder, who was hired as director of academic services for the Marshfield school district.
TripAdvisor recognized the Keeter Center at College of the Ozarks as a Top 25 Small Hotel in the U.S. in its 2019 Travelers’ Choice Awards. Winners in eight categories were determined by millions of reviews and opinions from travelers around the globe.
The Keeter Center’s Dobyns Dining Room was named Best Branson-Area Restaurant by 417 Magazine. It also took second place for Best Place for Brunch and Best Restaurant Service in the Best of 417 2019: Food & Drink.
TripAdvisor named Branson to its top U.S. destinations for 2019, the eighth time the city has been on the list. Branson ranked 19th, ahead of Seattle, San Antonio and Austin, Texas. New York City ranked first, followed by Maui and Oahu in Hawaii.
The Holiday Inn Express & Suites Medical District received the InterContinental Hotels Group 2018 Torchbearer Award. It’s one of 216 American hotels chosen out of 5,300 IHG properties systemwide, based on guest experiences and customer satisfaction ratings.
HR Advantage LLC hired Elizabeth Hurst as business development manager to cultivate relationships with employers to assess their human resource needs. She served the past five years as development manager for the Springfield Symphony Orchestra.
The Western Missouri and Kansas Laborers-Employers Cooperation and Education Trust named Laura Wagner as director. She serves as a liaison between the Laborer’s International Union of North America and signatory companies in collective bargaining agreements. Wagner has 20 years of experience in marketing, public relations and business development.
The Bark Yard dog park and bar concept launched; Charity Fent Cake Design LLC moved; and a pair of business owners collaborated on opening The Hidden Hut LLC.
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.
Steve Williams, owner of Crosstown Barbecue, discusses the role relationships have played throughout the 51 years that Crosstown Barbecue has been in business. He says that while he puts effort into providing the best food he can, ultimately “people like to do business with people they like.”
Randy Bacon, professional photographer and humanitarian, relates his experience building relationships with clients since he became a photographer. He says building relationships with his clients and perfecting his craft are the most important things he does to spread his business.
Sandy Higgins, owner of the Crackerjack Shack, shares the reason behind the business’ name. She says part of the inspiration goes back to a painting her daughter had in her room when she was younger.
Heather Kite, owner of Rooted Deep Farms, relates how she started up her business in the summer of last year. She says it was a long journey, but she is satisfied with the choice she made.