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SPS deputy superintendent receives business honor

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Carol Embree, Springfield Public Schools' retiring deputy superintendent, was selected for a statewide business award.

The Missouri Association of School Business Officials named Embree the 2021 Business Official of the Year, according to a news release.

"Through the MoASBO organization, I have connected with leaders throughout the state, have grown through professional learning and have formed friendships for a lifetime," she said in the release. “I am honored to receive this recognition."

The award recognizes school business officials for their work in growing the operations of their districts. At SPS, Embree oversees a $250 million operating budget, as well as construction management, purchasing and distributing, nutrition services and other departments.

The finalists for the MoASBO award were Kirsten Lipari-Braman, CEO of Gordon Parks Elementary in Kansas City; Joel Holland, superintendent of Windsor C-1 School District in northern Jefferson County; Paul Kelly, assistant superintendent for business and technology at Park Hill School District in the Kansas City area; Paul Northington, chief financial officer of Rockwood School District in St. Louis County; and Cindy Reilmann, director of finance for the Francis Howell School District in St. Charles, according to the association's website.

The association has nearly 700 school district members. Its website indicates no other Springfield official has won the annual business award.

Embree is scheduled to retire from SPS on June 30. She has a 29-year public education career and has worked at SPS since 2014.

Incoming SPS Superintendent Grenita Lathan hired John Mulford as Embree's successor. Mulford starts July 1, coming to SPS from Meramec Valley R-III School District.

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