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Newsmakers: Oct. 30-Nov. 5, 2023

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Accounting
Certified public accountant Ben Zachary of Compere Robinette CPAs was selected by the American Institute of CPAs to participate in its Leadership Academy. A shareholder and tax manager at the firm, he’s one of 36 CPAs chosen for the four-day program to expand the leadership skills of promising young professionals while they network with a peer group.

KPM CPAs & Advisors hired Wayland E. Mueller as a manager and Christopher H. Chochon, Meghin M. Cook, Blake A. Greble and Mary E. Wicker as staff accountants. Mueller, a CPA and certified internal auditor, previously worked for KPM and has 20 years of audit and accounting experience. He holds a bachelor’s in finance from Missouri State University and an MBA from University of Arizona. Chochon and Greble were interns; they each hold bachelor’s degrees in accounting and finance – Chochon from Drury University and Greble from MSU. Cook, on the accounting outsourcing team, has 12 years of accounting experience and holds a bachelor’s in business administration and accounting from Columbia College. Wicker works in audit services and holds an MBA and Master of Accountancy from MSU.

Architecture
Throughline Architecture LLC hired Dain Wood as an architectural intern. He’s studying for his master’s in architecture at Drury.

Banking & Finance
First Midwest Bank hired Jerrod Harmon as a vice president and commercial lender. With a bachelor’s in finance from Drury, he has experience in financial services as a lender and analyst.

Great Southern Bank promoted Ryan Cox to regional manager of retail banking in the Springfield metro area. He’s worked 15 years for the bank, most recently as a banking center manager and assistant regional manager. Cox holds a bachelor’s in marketing management from MSU.

Arvest Bank appointed Erin Danastasio, executive director of the Hatch Foundation, to its board of directors in Springfield. Danastasio, who started the charitable foundation with her family to support community projects, holds a bachelor’s in textile and apparel management, with a minor in business, from University of Missouri and serves on boards for The Darr Family Foundation, Springfield Innovation Inc., Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, Springfield Catholic Schools Development and Cycle Connect 417.

Education
Ozarks Technical Community College earned Honor Roll status in the 2023 listing by Great Colleges to Work For. The annual program ranks colleges nationwide based on performance classifications, including job satisfaction and support, compensation and benefits, professional development and confidence in senior leadership. Scoring high in 7 of 10 categories, OTC is the only institution in Missouri on the Honor Roll and one of 42 schools nationally.

College of the Ozarks received three No. 1 rankings in U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges 2023-24: Most Innovative School in the Midwest, Best Value School in the Midwest and Best Undergraduate Teaching. The school also was No. 2 for Top Performer on Social Mobility in the Midwest, No. 3 Best Regional College in the Midwest, Best Undergraduate Engineering in the Midwest and Best First Year Experience. The latter two categories are new rankings for the school, which has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report since 1989. Calculations are based on student-faculty ratio, academic majors offered, application requirements, tuition and financial aid policies, student body demographics and campus life.

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