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 Judith Martinez-Garcia

Brad Bodenhausen, her cosponsor, introduced Judith on Aug. 24.  Her sponsor is Rachael Walsh.

Judith is an assistant professor of Spanish in the Department of Languages, Cultures, and Religions at Missouri State University.  She also directs the Bear Bridge mentoring program for new faculty members.  She's been a faculty member since 2005.

Judith came to Springfield in 2003 as a graduate student at SMSU (now MSU).  While studying, she also taught foreign languages for one year in Sparta High School and two years at Central High School in Springfield.  She’s also taught in Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico, and worked for the 
American School Foundation of Monterrey, her hometown.

Judith has many honors and awards for her work at MSU, including a Faculty Research Award and an Outstanding Teaching Award.  Her research topics have included forced migration, violence along the Mexican borders, and Latinx literature.  Her professional affiliations include American Council of Teaching Foreign Languages, Latin American Studies Association, American Comparative Literature Association, Diversity Education Leadership Academy, and Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.

Judith earned a PhD in 2017 in Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies, Hispanic emphasis, at University of Arkansas; a Master’s degree in 2005 in French and Spanish as a Second Language at MSU; and a Bachelor’s degree in 2002 in Law and Social Sciences at Autonomous University of Nuevo León in northern Mexico.

Judith’s community service includes the Hand-in-Hand Multicultural Center and Junior League of Springfield.  She’s a graduate of Leadership Springfield’s Class 42 and a member of the Leadership Springfield board.

Judith and her husband, Jesús Garcia, live in southeastern Springfield and have two sons.  One is a freshman at Grinnell College in Iowa and the other is a Central High School student.

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 Kimberlee Nevins

Ken Stephens, her father, introduced Kimberlee on Aug. 3.  Her co-sponsor is Brent Dunn.

Kimberlee works with her father at Employee Benefit Design in south Springfield, where she’s an executive account manager.  She advises clients on benefit packages and manages the company’s Sales and Service departments.  She’s been in a managerial position for five years and worked in this field for 10 years.

Kimberlee has lived in Springfield for 33 years.  She earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at Missouri State University.  She was a member of Springfield Rotaract Club for a year in 2018 and 2019.  She’s a member of the Springfield Area Human Resources Association, United Benefit Advisors, and the National Association of Underwriters.  Her volunteer service includes Community Blood Center of the Ozarks and Care to Learn.

Kimberlee lives in southeast Springfield with her husband, James, and 4 children.

Dr. Kyle John

Luke Westerman introduced Kyle on July 6.  His co-sponsor is Jason Brown.

Kyle is medical director for The Arc of the Ozark’s new Autism and Neurodevelopmental Center, a job that he started in April.   He previously worked 16 years for the Mercy Health System in Springfield as vice president for Behavioral Health.  He’s been a physician for 25 years.

Kyle grew up in Independence, Mo., in a Rotary family.  Kyle’s father is a past president of the Independence Rotary Club and he attended many Rotary events, even before becoming a member of the Truman High School Interact Club.

Kyle earned his bachelor’s degree and his medical degree at the University of Missouri in Columbia before completing his residencies in psychiatry and child psychiatry at the Mayo Clinic.  He is married to Melissa Bondy, who for 12 years has been Bass Pro’s Corporate Wellness director and Fitness Series director (marathon weekend, Top of the Rock, Dogwood Canyon.)  Kyle says he is often recognized as “Melissa Bondy’s husband.”

Kyle and Melissa have two sons who both graduated from MU.  Brennan earned a Journalism degree and works at Schilling Sellmeyer. Garrett earned a business degree and works for Luke at the Computer Recycling Center.

Kyle and his family attend and volunteer at Holy Trinity Catholic Church and volunteer at Abilities First.  They enjoy downhill skiing, scuba diving, and just about anything exercise related.

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Carl Peterson

Bob Hammerschmidt introduced Carl on June 15.  His cosponsor is Brent Baldwin.

Carl is the district director for the Pathfinder District of the Ozark Trails Council, Boy Scouts of America.  That district covers Springfield and many of its nearby cities, and is the largest district in the council.  Carl has worked for the council for seven years.  His duties include fundraising, new member recruitment, field service to the Scouting units and their charter partners (sponsors), and coordinating the service of volunteers. 

Carl is an Eagle Scout.  He earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Missouri State University.  His past community service includes being a member of Kiwanis clubs in Joplin and Springfield. 

Carl has been in the Ozarks for 16 years.  He lives in Ozark with his wife, Erica.
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Logan Aguirre

Jim Conley introduced Logan on June 1.  Her co-sponsor is Lisa Odom.

Logan is publisher/owner of Whitaker Publishing of Springfield, which produces 417 Magazine, 417 Home, 417 Bride and Biz 417.  She joined the company in 2006 after working in New York City and St. Louis in marketing and public relations.  After working in sales, marketing and event planning, she became associate publisher and then president before purchasing the business from her parents, Joan and Gary Whitaker, in September 2020.

Logan is a past chair of the board of the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, serves on the national board for the City Regional Magazine Association, and is active on the Friends of SPS Steering Committee.  Other past board experience includes Junior League of Springfield, Springfield Business Development Corporation, Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau Board, Foundation for Springfield Public Schools Advisory Board, Care to Learn Advisory Board, Lost & Found Grief Center Junior Board and CoxHealth Young Professionals Advisory Council.  She is a graduate of Leadership Springfield Class 31.  Folio: Magazine named her a Top Women in Media in the Corporate Visionaries category in 2017 and she is a 2008 Springfield Business Journal 40 Under 40 honoree.

Logan earned a Bachelor of Journalism degree at the Mizzou School of Journalism.  She often serves as a speaker and emcee.  Her speech topics include leadership lessons and networking tips.  She’s a big believer in the Great Game of Business.

Logan and her husband of 17 years, Dave, live in east Springfield.  They have a daughter, Lucy, 13, and a son, Cruz, 10, who attend St. Agnes.  In her free time, she enjoys hot yoga classes and boating with her family on Table Rock Lake.
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 Hector Cruz

Hector was introduced on May 18.  His sponsors are Brent Baldwin and Bob Hammerschmidt.

Hector is senior director of development at Evangel University, where he’s worked for 14 years.  He oversees alumni relations and fundraising.

Hector has lived in the Springfield area for 18 years.  He earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership at Evangel.

Hector’s community service includes the Encompass Academy board, the Ozarks Teen Challenge board, the Network Leadership Council, and volunteer work with his church.  He’s a member of Association for Financial Professionals, Certified Fund Raising Executive International, and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

Hector and his wife, Eden, live in Ozark and have three children, ages 10, 8 and 6.
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 Travis Comfort

Lynette Weatherford introduced him on May 18.  His co-sponsor is Lori Murawski.

Travis is vice president of Rick’s Automotive, where he’s worked his way up since 2009.  He oversees all operations, including personnel, payroll, finances and training.  He previously served as porter, parts manager, service advisor and general manager.

Travis grew up in Independence, Mo., and moved to Springfield 20 years ago to complete his education.  He earned a business degree at Missouri State University. 

Travis’ community service includes Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks, CoxHealth Foundation, Mercy Foundation, OTC Foundation, CASA, Isabell’s House, Ronald McDonald House of the Ozarks, Convoy of Hope, and United Way of the Ozarks, which named him Campaign Manager of the Year in 2022.  He’s a member of Springfield Executive Breakfast Club, the Springfield chapter of Midwest Auto Care Alliance, and the Chamber of Commerce.  He says one of his proudest moments was when Rick’s donated $100,000 for the new
Robert W. Plaster Center for Advanced Manufacturing at Ozarks Technical Community College.

Travis and his wife, Kala, married in 2008.  They live in Nixa and have two sons, ages 14 and 11, who keep them busy with sports, including baseball, basketball, football, and wrestling, which are the same ones in which he participated as a youth.

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Jennifer Cotner-Jones

Bob Hammerschmidt introduced Jennifer on May 4.  Her co-sponsor is Irwin Cohen.

Jennifer has been executive director since April 2019 of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra.  She manages the staff and works to increase the orchestra’s income streams.  Previously, she had more than 20 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations, including development, event planning, volunteer recruitment, marketing, and donor relations.  Her past employers include Aaron Sachs & Associates, Ozarks Regional YMCA, American Cancer Society, and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Jennifer has lived in the Ozarks all her life.  She earned a bachelors degree in business at Hollins University in Hollins, Va.  Her volunteer service includes Developmental Center of the Ozarks, and Discovery Garden Montessori School, which she helped found and served as a board president.

Jennifer and her husband, Mark, live in Rogersville and have one daughter.  She enjoys watching science fiction movies, helping her daughter in scholastic hobbies and interests, and playing in her church's bell choir. 
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Chad Munsey

Adam Toth introduced Chad on May 4.  His co-sponsor is Deryk Morelock.

Chad is a broker at Nixon Lindstrom Insurance, where he helps design employee benefit programs and coverages for businesses.  He’s worked there for 18 years.  Before that he was a Jefferson City firefighter and worked for the International Association of Fire Fighters as a legislative assistant at the Missouri Capitol.

Chad was born in Springfield and moved back in 2001.  He attended Southwest Missouri State University (now MSU), Ozarks Technical Community College, and a Fire Science school. 

Chad was a Springfield Rotaract Club member from 2005 – ’08.   His community service includes the Christ Church Foundation; Friends of the Zoo, where he’s a past board president; and as an activator at Good Samaritan Boys Ranch near Brighton.  He’s a trustee of the Springfield Police/Fire Pension Fund and a trustee of the Missouri LAGERS pension fund.

Chad and his wife, Ginger, live in south Springfield and have one son, Edward.
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Claire Sakaoka

Michael Wehrenberg introduced Claire on May 4.  Her co-sponsor is Nick Altrup.

Claire is the owner and chief strategist of engage5W, a branding, marketing, and content creation company that she launched in 2012.  She has 23 years of experience in public relations, marketing, and digital media management.  Some of her previous jobs were at Wiederhold & Associates, Allen Global Companies, Ozarks Technical Community College, the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, and Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla.

Claire has lived in Springfield since 2004.  She earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations at Central Missouri State University (now University of Central Missouri) in Warrensburg in 2001.  Her community service includes being on the board, including serving as secretary, of The Humanitarian Way.  She is also a past president of the Southwest Missouri Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.  She was a finalist for the Woman Start-Up of the Year award at the Drury University Women's Entrepreneurship Symposium in February 2013

Claire and her husband, Tommy, live in east Springfield and have two children.
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Matt Madura

Lori Johnson Murawski introduced Matt on April 27.  His sponsors are Kirk Elmquist and Todd Carter.

Matt is the owner of Madura Agency, an affiliate of American Family Insurance, on South Fremont Avenue.  He’s been in Springfield for 20 years and worked in the insurance field for 21 years before opening his own agency.

Matt grew up in Kimberling City, attended Reeds Spring High School, and Missouri Southern State University in Joplin, where he earned a bachelor's degree in Mass Communications in 2000.  He has volunteered with Reel Recovery, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks, and Business Exchange of Springfield.

Matt and his wife, Brianne, live in Fremont Hills and have three daughters -- Madison, 17; Emma, 15; and Chloe, 15 -- and two dogs -- Bacon and Charlie.  He enjoys woodworking, travel, philanthropy, fishing, hunting, boating and learning new skills. 
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Mike Pinkston

Benjy Lampert introduced Michael on April 27.  His co-sponsor is Jim Towery.

Mike is a senior financial advisor and senior vice president for Merrill Lynch, where he's worked for 25 years.  His office is on Bradford Parkway in south Springfield. 

Mike grew up in Texas County.  He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science at University of Missouri.

Mike enjoys travel, golfing, snow skiing, hunting, water sports, and lake time with family and friends.  He organizes Hardwoods, an annual outdoor cooking BarBQ contest and music festival.  He and his wife, Whitney, have three children: Jake, Hannah and Harper.

Mike has been on the board of Ozarks Food Harvest for 15 years and is on the board of its foundation.  He also has volunteered with and helped raise funds for the Humane Society of Southwest Missouri and other nonprofit groups. 
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Carrie Henry

Rick McElvaine introduced Carrie on April 27.  Her co-sponsor is Lori Barnes Miller.

Carrie is the owner of Henry’s Towing, which has about 50 employees and serves more than 45,000 customers a year.  It’s the largest independently owned AAA-affiliated single service area towing company in the country.  She also launched another business, Purpose Found Investments, in 2022.

Carrie was born and raised in Cabool with her parents and two older brothers.  She worked at her father's family business, as well as in banking and insurance.  While attending Drury University in Springfield, where she earned a bachelor's degree in Communications, she met Matt Henry and they married in 1991.  They lived two years in Iowa City until Matt earned a degree in neuropsychology at University of Iowa in 1993.  Carrie worked in banking there.

After  they returned to Springfield, Carrie worked for Boatmen's Bank before becoming a stay-at-home mom.  
She and Matt started working at Henry’s Towing, founded by his parents, about 20 years ago, and became owners in 2012.  She became the sole owner and manager after he died of pancreatic cancer in 2019.

Carrie has three children -- Elizabeth, Jared, and Josh, all in their 20s.  She returned to Drury to earn an MBA in 2022.

Carrie volunteers with projects of Schweitzer Church as well as other nonprofit organizations, including the Chamber of Commerce of Greater Springfield and the National Women’s Business Council.  She enjoys woodworking, traveling, good game nights, all kinds of crafts, trying new foods, wines, and spending time with family and friends.

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Ray Lampert

Benjy Lampert, Raymond’s dad, introduced him to the club on April 20.  His co-sponsor is Stephen Benton.

Ray has been an attorney for 18 years and in a solo practice for 14 years.  He specializes in employment law, business law, and estate planning. 

Ray has lived in Springfield for 39 years except when he was away at college.  He was a Boy Scout in Troop 7 at Schweitzer (formerly United Methodist) Church and is an Eagle Scout.  He graduated from Glendale High School and then earned a bachelor of arts degree at Drury University and a law degree at University of Missouri in Columbia. 

Ray was in the Springfield Rotaract Club from 2006 - 2009.  He’s also served on the Springfield Citizens Tax Oversight Committee, the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association, and the Democratic Alliance.  Ray and his wife, Isabel, live in east Springfield and hosted two foreign exchange students in the 2022 - '23 school year:  Emma (Italy) and Duda (Brazil).
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Will Cox

Jim Towery introduced Will on April 13.  His co-sponsor is Ken Williams.

Will is the chief executive officer and co-founder in 2018 of Solera Energy LLC in north Springfield.  The company employs 48 people and says it has installed solar panels on more homes in Missouri than all other companies combined.  It also has customers in northwest Arkansas and Kansas, and serves industrial and commercial businesses as well as residential clients.  It offers backup generators and electric storage facilities as well as solar installations.

Will’s first job at age 7 was going door to door for his father’s successful city council campaign in Lawton, Okla.  After moving to Springfield in 1994 at age 10, Will’s parents opened a restaurant called Scramblers that still operates.  Will credits his work ethic to his upbringing in the restaurant.  As an all-conference quarterback and outside linebacker at Kickapoo High School, Will found his truest passion and coached football for two years after briefly attending the University of Missouri.

Will worked successfully in sales at Wyndham Worldwide starting in 2007.  After becoming director of sales in the Pocono mountains of Pennsylvania, he increased sales 187 percent over his three-year tenure.  He then took over the converted Hotel 71 in Chicago and became the youngest project director in the company before becoming director of sales in Branson to be closer to family.   
Will resigned from Wyndham with no plan in 2016.  While in Mexico with his family, Will received a call from someone who wanted him to start a solar company. The contents of this call weren’t discussed with anyone. The next day he received a call from his wife’s grandmother to let him know she had a vision during her prayer time in which he was standing in a field and the sun was shining brighter and brighter and money started to pop up around him until it got so bright that she couldn’t look anymore.  Six months later, Will and Mark Gardner founded Solera.
Will and his wife of 11 years, Jenni, live in east Springfield and have two sons, Liam and Chandler, ages 9 and 10, with whom he has played catch every day since they were 4 years old.  His community service includes helping at-risk teens and young men with addictions through Higher Ground and Care Center Ministries.  He’s also volunteered with Honor Flight of Southwest Missouri and the Missouri Solar Energy Industries Association.  He enjoys working out, playing a guitar, watching the St. Louis Cardinals and Kansas City Chiefs, and coaching his sons’ flag and tackle football teams for the past four years.