The culmination of Springfield Business Journal's 2022 Economic Impact Awards event was a Lifetime Achievement in Business honor for Hal Donaldson, founder and CEO of Springfield-based international humanitarian relief organization Convoy of Hope.
Donaldson was recognized for his work at Convoy, which he helped start in 1994. The Economic Impact Awards, which honored other individuals and businesses also influencing the region, were held last night at Oasis Hotel & Convention Center.
“I believe that our growth has come from the fact that we’re here in the Ozarks," Donaldson said upon taking the stage.
Prior to that, a video message from Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris congratulated Donaldson on the award. Morris was SBJ's Lifetime Achievement in Business honoree in 2015.
Since the launch of Convoy, Donaldson and team have grown the faith-based nonprofit to serve over 200 million people, collectively, in disaster services and feeding programs worldwide and to generate nearly $439 million in annual revenue, according to its 2021 annual report.
Donaldson last year led the corporate team of over 250 employees to build a world distribution center in Republic, to be followed next year by a global headquarters and training center, representing 450,000 square feet and over $50 million in development on the new campus, according to past reporting. Also last year, Convoy ranked No. 48 on America’s Top 100 Charities by Forbes and was credited with 96% fundraising efficiency.
Fifteen companies were recognized for their economic impact based on years in operation.
In the 1-7 years in business category, A hip joint took home top honors. Buf Architecture Studio LLC and Next Level Solutions were finalists.
Burgess Aircraft Management LLC, dba OzAir Charter Service, was the winner in the 8-15 years in business category, with finalists Hurts Donut Co. and Phoenix Home Care & Hospice.
In the 16-29 years in business category, Environmental Works Inc. won, with finalists Pearson-Kelly Technology and Toth and Associates Inc. also honored.
Central Bank in Springfield was the winner in the 30-74 years in business category. Finalists were Citizens Memorial Hospital and The Kitchen Inc.
For more than 75 years in business, CoxHealth took top honors. The finalists were Mercy Springfield Communities and The Bank of Missouri.
The 22nd annual Economic Impact Awards presented additional individual and company honors: Arvest Bank as Business Advocate of the Year; Larson Heating, Air & Plumbing as Philanthropic Business of the Year; Meleah Spencer, CEO of The Kitchen Inc., as Community Involvement Champion; Meg Wagler, a visual artist, as Entrepreneur of the Year; and Pregnancy Care Center as Charitable Nonprofit of the Year.
Profiles of all the honorees will be included in SBJ's Aug. 1 print edition.
Art Zone LLC, Launch Virtual Learning Center and The Permit Shop relocated.