One of the highlights of the CFO’s year took place today with the annual Affiliate Conference, which this year moved to a larger venue at First and Calvary Presbyterian Church in Springfield.
The conference is intended to bring together board members from the CFO’s 46 regional affiliate foundations, which cover the entire southern portion of the state. This year, volunteer leaders from Joplin to Perryville joined together under the theme of “building more generous communities.” A keynote panel focused on economic development, and how philanthropy can play role in driving jobs and stability in our small towns. Those in attendance also were treated to lunch, music by an Evangel University jazz ensemble, and presentations from CFO staff and peer groups about best practices for affiliate foundations.
The highlight of the day was the closing awards ceremonies, where several individual board members, as well as four Affiliate of the Year foundations, were honored. This year’s Affiliates of the Year were the Carthage Community Foundation, the Marshfield Area Community Foundation (both repeat winners), the Truman Lake Community Foundation, and the Dent County Community Foundation.
Individual honors included Board Members of Excellence. Those honorees (pictured) included: Stan Schmidt, Carthage; Marvin Silliman; Lake of the Ozarks; Jim Holland, Hermann; Landon Fletcher, Cassville; Wayne Parry, Meramec region. Front row: Kathy Lasley, Cuba; Kathie Rieder, Stockton; Elise Crain, Finley River; Brenda Ledgerwood, Alton; Stephanie Howard, Joplin; Kay Forest, El Dorado Springs, and Charlie Heywood, Seymour.
Finally, the CFO also awarded the first ever Fred Lemons Award for board member achievement. Named for the late, founding president of the Lockwood Community Foundation, the first award went to Ron Giedd, a founding member of the Greater Seymour Area Foundation. Giedd is pictured at right with Fred’s widow, LaRue Lemons, and the rest of his family.