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Newsmakers: May 9-15, 2022

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Accounting
BKD LLP promoted Erica Barnett, Carlee Lynn and Kaytlan Uhlman to senior advisers in its private client division. Barnett holds a bachelor’s in accounting from Missouri State University; Lynn has a bachelor’s in financial planning and risk management/insurance from MSU; and Uhlman has a bachelor’s in financial planning from MSU.

Automotive
Winston Sleeth, owner and operator of three Byrider car dealerships in Springfield, Joplin and Columbia, was inducted into the company’s Hall of Fame. Sleeth, of Springfield, began his career with Byrider in 1999 as a part-time associate in the corporate office and moved into field account management and finance, before taking on general manager and territory manager roles. His Springfield franchise store has received the top dealership award four years straight.

Banking & Finance
Old Missouri Bank hired Madison Foster as a marketing coordinator and promoted Katelyn Langford to graphic team lead in the marketing department. Foster has five years of banking experience, including stints with Commerce Bank and Guaranty Bank. She holds a bachelor’s in business from MSU. Langford worked seven years in marketing and graphics for Meek’s Lumber and Bass Pro Shops before joining OMB. She holds a bachelor’s in graphic design from MSU.

Arvest Bank was named among the World’s Best Banks by Forbes magazine for the fourth year in a row. Based on customer feedback from independent surveys, Arvest ranks 20th in the U.S.

Municipal
The city of Branson added Marshall Howden, Charles Rodriguez and Ralph LeBlanc to the Board of Aldermen. Howden succeeds Bill Skains in Ward 1, Rodriguez takes Jeff Seay’s seat in Ward 2, and LeBlanc follows Jamie Whiteis in Ward 3.

Nonprofit
Esther Munch joined Court Appointed Special Advocates of Southwest Missouri as development director. She’s previously worked in nonprofit development roles for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Harmony House.

Mary Bozarth and Laura McCaskill were elected to the Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland’s Board of Directors. Bozarth works as Springfield’s assistant city attorney and holds bachelor’s degrees in history and political science, as well as a Juris Doctor, from University of Miami. McCaskill is owner and president of Springfield-based companies Medavera, a medical education firm, and The Medical Package, a medical marketing agency. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in communications from MSU.

Ozark Greenways Inc. hired Chelsea Russell-Ice as the soft surface trails coordinator, representing an expansion into unpaved surfaces in the trail system. She’s spent the past eight years as a secondary education English teacher and also has experience in theater and nonprofit grant writing.

Real Estate
Ericka Peppers was named chief operating officer of Bryan Properties. She joined the company in 2019 and previously worked as general manager for Aspen Heights in Springfield. Peppers holds a bachelor’s in media from Evangel University.

Utilities
Associated Electric Cooperative Inc. promoted Barb Economon to vice president of finance from managing director of finance and treasury. She’s worked 22 years for AECI, starting as an accountant, and holds her certified public accounting license.

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