Approximately 200 regional leaders throughout north Missouri gathered in Chillicothe Friday for the 2018 Community Foundation of Northwest Missouri Annual Event.
The keynote speaker was Deb Markley, Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Center for Rural Entrepreneurship and LOCUS Investing of Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Dr. Markley addressed the group focusing on the topic “Finding Your Best Next Step Toward Regional Prosperity.” Markley recapped Community Conversations held in Cameron on Thursday where small focus groups shared challenges and opportunities in Northwest Missouri. Among her comments were personal stories of five communities from across the country where examples of working together had made a difference in economic development leading to regional prosperity. In turn, she challenged the Northwest Missouri leaders to be proud of their regional strengths and by working together, all things are possible.
During the meeting, Board Chair Jim Blackford of Maryville presented Distinguished Alumni Awards to Lowell Kruse and the late Wendel Myers. Both men were founding members of The Community Foundation of Northwest Missouri. The awards were accepted by Zane Myers, son of Wendel Myers and Tim Kruse, son of Lowell Kruse.
Foundation CEO Mary Richmond Hinde updated the crowd on the growth and progress of The Community Foundation. She announced that since the inception of The Community Foundation of Northwest Missouri in 2009, over 215 funds are now administered by The Community Foundation with assets in excess of $22.5 million dollars including over 100 scholarships.
She encouraged those in attendance to remember the vision of The Community Foundation of Northwest Missouri is to be a national leader in regional collaboration creating the culture which results in increased philanthropy and prosperity. She challenged attendees to remember – “We Are Better Together!”