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2B FRIDAY, MARCH 7, 2014


The Lighthouse Shelter under new management by Kelsey Alumbaugh Staff Writer Leo Grothaus took over as the director of The Lighthouse Shelter on April 15, and since then it has been a whirlwind of change within the organization. Barbie Criswell took over as the board president, and said the board has completely rearranged. “Since we’ve all kind of reorganized, we’ve tightened up on things,” Criswell said. “We’ve tightened up on personnel issues. We’ve become more active as a board and knowledgeable as a board about the goings-on of what’s happening.” As for the management of the shelter and thrift store, Cory Petersen is the new shelter manager, Kate Sutherland is the case manager, Melody Smith is the counselor, Barbara Perkins is the new thrift store manager and Brandon Vogel is the new assistant thrift store manager. “It is different,” Grothaus said. “We are one of the few shelters, if not the only shelter, to be headed up by male figures. I try to be compassionate and listen. We’ve gotten a lot of good reception from the (Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence). … It is different having two males who are calling the shots and working with the clients.” Grothaus said if any of the clients aren’t comfortable with two males, he could call on a female board member to assist. “They’ve reorganized,” Grothaus said of the board. ”I’ve stepped in as director and I’ve promoted Cory Petersen to shelter manager. Cory was an advocate and was working at the shelter, and I promoted him up to manager after getting my feet on the ground and getting a feel for what was going on over there.” Grothaus said Sutherland is the case manager and she handles all the cases and works with the clients to help get them on a plan or program. Grothaus also said both Perkins and Vogel work hard and have done well at the thrift store. “Melody Smith is our counselor,” Grothaus said. “She does all of our counseling over at the shelter and she also works with our outreach clients.” Grothaus said the management and staff are not the only things to change in the last 10 months. “We have expanded a food program that we inherited,” he said. “At one point, the shed was over by the porch and that’s where all the food was stored. It wasn’t climate-controlled and that was an issue for me. I wanted to change that. It was chock-full of food, canned goods and that kind of thing.” Grothaus said the three-car garage behind the shelter office has been converted into a

Jesse Brown/Democrat-News

Front row, left to right, Barbara Perkins, thrift store manager; Chelsea Bruner, victims advocate; and Mandy Baker-Schull, support advocate. Back row, Cory Petersen, shelter manager; Leo Grothaus, executive director; Melody Smith, counselor; and Brandon Vogel, assistant thrift store manager. pantry. “We converted that into a pantry and we’ve utilized that to solve a lot of issues,” he said. “We have got all our food stored in there. We’ve moved our freezers from the pantry over at the shelter over … and that freed up the pantry area at the shelter for the residents.” Grothaus said the food comes from Central Missouri Food Bank, but they also receive donations from Walmart and Kentucky Fried Chicken. “We also get food donations from Walmart. That can be anywhere from one to two times a week,” he said. “Sometimes three times if another party can’t come pick their food up.” Grothaus said the donations usually consist of bread, produce and meat that have met the sell-by date, but not the expiration date. “It’s amazing. It’s anywhere from 1,500 to 3,000 pounds that we will pick up out there in a days time,” he said. “We’re talking a van chock-full of food and it needs to get out into that community that day. We’re talking perishable type food and so we work to get that done.” Grothaus said the food is prioritized for their clients, both in and out of the shelter. “We make sure the shelter is stocked and supplied with food,” he said. “Then, we take that food and offer it to (clients who don’t live in the shelter) twice a month.” Grothaus said it is such a logistical nightmare that they use a phone tree to reach all of the clients to find out what they need and then put them a food box together. “They will get a food box that day that they can take home and it’s a supplement to whatever they get at the pantry or with food stamps so that they don’t go hungry and their kids don’t go hungry,” he said. He noted they also partner with Butterfield Youth Center and Powerhouse Ministries to make sure all of the donated food gets utilized. “Then we also get food from a third source,” he explained. “Kentucky Fried

Chicken is the only restaurant in town that we get this from and we go over there two to three times a week (to get the left-over chicken and biscuits) and then we freeze it … so it can be used.” Grothaus said he was overwhelmed when he started as director and saw the amount of food to be dealt with, and the amount of time it takes to get the food into the community. “We’re not here to compete with the pantry, we’re here to be a supplement to the pantry,” he said.

Kelsey Alumbaugh/Democrat-News

see Shelter, page 3B

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Picosita’s strives to serve quality food to its customers by Jesse Brown Staff Writer Sandra Granados, with her sister, Flor, opened Picosita’s Grill and Pizzeria last spring on April 30, 2013. The hybrid restaurant serves hispanic food and New York-style pizza. “We are a combination between Salvadorian and Mexican grill, and we serve pizza, the best pizzas in Missouri,” Granados said, with a laugh. “Everything is handmade, everything is fresh, all the sauces are made fresh.” Granados said she stresses these points of pride to let the public know the restaurant wants to serve the finest quality of food. She said she has been working in the pizza industry for 16 years, while her sister has been in the industry for 22 years. “We’re looking (for) the best quality of the bread, the taste (and) the pizza,” Granados said. “... People have been loving it here.” Granados said business is good, with a really good period last summer. She said she was surprised by the summer business because she thought the college demographic would be her best customers, but it turned out to be the opposite, even getting customers from neighboring communities like Slater. “In the summer, people like to drink more, they

like to go out more,” Granados said. “... You don’t want to get out in the winter.” On top of the New York-style pizza they serve, with the Picosita Pizza being their most famous, the restaurant also serves a variety of three salsas. “We have the salsa that we serve with the chips, and we have the hot and the mild salsa,” Granados said. Another point of pride Granados talks about is the quality of the meat they serve, which comes from the Springfield Grocer Company. “We can do it cheaper and go for the cheaper stuff, but it won’t taste the same,” Granados said. “... We use choice meats.” A new direction Picosita’s is implementing is serving breakfast on Saturday and Sunday from 7 to 11 a.m., which started on Saturday, Feb. 22. “Everybody asked me ‘Are you going to have biscuits and gravy?’” Granados said, when asked about the menu, which is offered. Some of the other items offered on the breakfast menu are huevos rancheros, a breakfast burrito and the Picosita omelet, which consists of eggs, onions, green peppers, tomatoes, jalapenos, cheese and choice of turkey, ham,

Jesse Brown/Democrat-News

Above: Bartender Kyle Lewis (center) pours Miller Lite from the tap to customers Rachel and Tim Stone at the bar area of Picosita’s Grill and Pizzeria Friday, Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day. Below: Sisters Sandra (left) and Flor Granados (right) strive to serve the best quality of food to Picosita’s Grill and Pizzeria’s customers. The sisters opened the restaurant on April 30, 2013. bacon or sausage. Granados said if breakfast hours remain busy, she will look into opening for breakfast throughout the entire week. Granados said their goals is to expand and hopefully open a Picosita’s restaurant in a bigger city. But, at this point, Granados said she and her sister are only trying to serve the best quality of food to its customers. “Everything is fresh and natural,” Granados said. Contact Jesse Brown at

Shelter continued from page 2B

Donations are a huge factor in how The Lighthouse Shelter functions, including donations to The Lighthouse Thrift Store. “They run on donations,” he said. “We get a lot of donations. They have done a tremendous job with that program over there. I’ve got really good workers.” Grothaus said the essence of the thrift store is to help carry out the mission.

“First and foremost, anything that comes in there as a donation is utilized by women or men at the shelter and their children who need those items,” he explained. “Sometimes they come in with just the shirt on their back. Then, as they work their program and begin to get out on their own, then we also have those furniture items and those household items they need to set up house.” Grothaus said Bed,

Bath & Beyond also donates items. The first priority is to meet clients’ needs and the second priority is to be sold to help them meet those clients’ needs. Grothaus said Bed, Bath & Beyond often donates to shelters. “Our thrift store runs with a lot of volunteers and a lot of good workers,” he said. “It’s really running well. It does well.” The change continues over at the shelter residence, and not just

with the leaders of the facility. “We’ve made some changes over there. We built a new sidewalk. We have painted and changed the living area,” Grothaus said. “We’re planning to remodel one of the upstairs bedrooms. We’re fixing up and have just painted our downstairs bedroom, which is for if we ever have a disabled person come in that can’t negotiate the stairs they can use that. It is currently for staff retreat so that staff can get back and away from

clients if they need to.” Donations are a large part of how the organization functions, but they aren’t the only source of income for the shelter. “Twenty-five percent of our budget is donations, which includes what we do at the thrift store and fundraising,” Grothaus said. “We will be gearing up to do more fundraising. We hope to do a poker night and a 5k this year, plus we’re looking at our Helping Handbags program and we’ll hopefully do that again this

fall.” Grothaus said other than donations, they have several grants they operate on. The two largest grants are from the Department of Public Safety, which is a reimbursement grant, and the Department of Public Services, which can bring in anywhere from $10,000 to $12,000 a month depending on the services they have provided. Along with donations of food and items, the donation of time is inte-

see Shelter, page 4B

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Technology: Bank from anywhere at anytime Gone are the days when we had to jump in our cars and rush to the bank to make a deposit before 5 p.m. on Friday afternoon. Or, if we were lucky enough that our bank had Saturday hours, and we could we make it there by noon to withdraw funds or make a deposit, we might say that we were satisfied with our banking experience. However, that was then and this is now! Advancements in technology have changed everything, including how we interact with our banks. So, why is technology making such great strides in banking? It all comes down to one word – “convenience.� According to a study conducted by the CFI Group and published in the ABA Banking Journal in Dec. 2013, a survey conducted among 500 consumers reveals the physical branch location is still extremely important to consumers, but 82 percent of bank customers interacted with their bank through the bank’s website, while 77 percent visited their local branches. The survey results go on to note that mobile apps are slowly

gaining popularity, with 35 percent of customers making use of a banking mobile app in the past 30 days. Interestingly enough, the No. 1 use of mobile apps is to check account balances, indicated by 84 percent of respondents, as opposed to executing a banking transaction. Wood & Huston Bank, headquartered in Marshall, is celebrating its 140th anniversary in 2014, behind the 175th anniversary of the founding of Marshall, and even though the bank may have a long history, it is highly focused on keeping up with the technology curve by providing its customers with more convenient means to interact with the bank. Wood & Huston is the only local community bank offering mobile banking and mobile check deposit services to its customers. “Since initiating our mobile banking and mobile check deposit services, we are seeing a steady stream of customers taking advantage of the convenience of both of these mobile banking services,� HJ Huston, vice president

Kelsey Alumbaugh/Democrat-News

The Wood & Huston Bank’s main branch, located at 27 E. North St., on the Marshall Square. and manager of retail banking, said. “Many customers coming in to the bank, or speaking with our Customer Service representatives over the phone have a lot of positive comments regarding their mobile banking experiences, and rave about just how convenient it is. At some point in the not too distant future, we ex-

pect that as many as 40 percent of our customers will be conducting their banking business via mobile.� To further its local presence, Wood & Huston recently opened a loan office in Higginsville, and even though the services of this office focus primarily on loans, the Higginsville office

provides the bank with a local presence in this community. Don Knehans, who heads up the Higginsville office for Wood & Huston, is a 25year veteran of the banking industry and a pillar of the Higginsville community serving on the Higginsville Board of Alderman since 1992 and as mayor pro-tem since 1994. Knehans is presently a board member of the Higginsville Chamber of Commerce and has served as President of the Chamber on several occasions in the past. In addition, to add to the banking convenience in Higginsville, Wood & Huston Bank will soon be installing two new ATMs at the

Casey’s General Store locations in Higginsville. With its long history of serving the people of Marshall and surrounding Saline County, Wood & Huston Bank is well aware of the importance of providing its personal and business banking customers with convenient options to address their customers’ banking needs. Keeping abreast of new technologies and leveraging smart technology to better serve its customers is at the heart of what it is that makes doing business with Wood & Huston Bank just one more opportunity to experience the best in customer service. (Submitted by Wood & Huston Bank)


Kelsey Alumbaugh/Democrat-News

Don Knehans takes a break at the Marshall Wood & Huston Bank. Knehans will be heading up the new location in Higginsville.

Shelter continued from page 3B

gral to the shelter’s success. “We’ve gotten a number of volunteers that have come back,� Grothaus explained. “Barb Wilson, was a volunteer, we now have her back. Troy Wilson–Troy is the guy that has done all our maintenance work and did the

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living room area. Debbie Allison had been a volunteer and is now back with us.� Grothaus and Criswell noted there were many others. Criswell said they need volunteers and it doesn’t matter if they can only volunteer two hours a week, but that anytime they have to give would be appreciated.

Volunteers have to go through 48 hours of training because The Lighthouse Shelter is both a domestic assault and a sexual assault shelter. They use the Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence guidelines for training.

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Coreslab Structures remains busy in the commercial market by Jesse Brown Staff Writer The Coreslab Structures plant in Marshall has seen a decrease in bridge work over the last year, but Dan Brandt, human resources manager, said the company marches on in other avenues. “We’re a manufacturer of precast, prestressed concrete products and they’re both architectural and structural components,” Brandt said. “We make parking structures, schools, office buildings, correctional facilities and bridge work.” Once all the components are made here in Marshall, Brandt said they then sell the pieces to a general contractor. “Then they either do the erection of the product (themselves) or they hire an erector,” Brandt said. “Sometimes we have an erector that works under our contract and it’s part of our contract.” Brandt said these examples are what Coreslab has been doing for the most part over the last year. While Brandt has reported the bridge market has been slow, the commercial market has made up for it. They have built multiple parking structures in Kansas City for IKEA, Hospital Hill, Overland Park Medical Center and Prairiefire and have built garages in St. Louis and Columbia. Brandt said the company has also worked on the football stadium expansion for the Missouri Tigers. “It was a relatively kind of a middle-of-theroad job as far as size and contract value,” Brandt said. “We produced all of it and they’ve erected most of it. We still have some pieces here that are going to go down, but if anybody has been to Columbia, they can see the tower crane right there and they’re building another upper level up on one side of that building.” Brandt said they supplied all the risers which the seats go on. Brandt said Coreslab is also currently active in building schools, one being Northeast Elementary in St. Joseph and Lansing High School in Lansing, Kan. They are also building a gymnasium for Webb City High School. Coreslab is currently working on seven projects to build FEMA shelters or safe rooms to battle severe and destructive weather. One of the projects is in Belton, four in Joplin, one in Oak Grove and one in Cabool. “We’re in the process of producing them and we’ll be shipping those here real soon, but we’ve seen a real increase in the request from that,” Brandt said. “Mainly because the federal government is funding part of those programs for FEMA shelters, so you see a lot of schools or buildings like a gymnasium or an additional room that’s also a safe room.” In a newsletter Brandt published for 2013, he stated the Marshall plant has 202 full-time employees with over 1,528

Contributed photo

Coreslab Structures supplies architectural and structural precast components for this building on 135th Street and Lamar Avenue in Overland Park, Kan. total years of seniority. “We’re fortunate to have that,” Brandt said. “A lot of the guys that get in here decide to stay or stay a long time and that’s what’s made us one of the strongest competitors in this region... Our employees and our experience.” Brandt said Coreslab will also be expanding its grounds to accommodate the need for more space and storage. “We own 60 acres to the west of this plant and we’re working on developing that property and expanding over there for storage,” Brandt said. “... We have plans to kind of gradually move into that area.” A big project for Coreslab in the coming year is the Barnes-Jewish

Hospital in St. Louis. Coreslab will produce about 2,000 pieces for the East Campus Parking Garage. “That’s a big job. That’s probably one of the biggest jobs we’ve had in a couple of years,” Brandt said. Contact Jesse Brown at

Contributed photo

Right: Coreslab Structures supplies material for a FEMA shelter in Oak Grove. Dan Brandt, human resources manager, said the company has seen an increase in FEMA shelters because the federal government is helping to fund the programs.

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Joan’s Drive-In keeps its legacy of good food and company alive by Jesse Brown Staff Writer Joan’s Drive-In has been a regular fixture to downtown Marshall for over half a century. The restaurant has changed owners throughout the years, but the current owners, Toby and Katie Tyler, aim to keep the restaurant’s legacy of good food and good

company alive. “This is one of the first places I ate when I moved back here from Los Angeles in 1978 and I loved the food, I loved the people, the stories and it just feels like when you come in, they give you a big hug,” Katie said. “We wanted to keep it going. That’s our dream.” The Tylers bought

the restaurant from Connie Allison last October, and the only changes they are making is trying to bring in more customers. They have remodeled a room where two to three tables will be available for any one who doesn’t want to sit at the diner. Toby said they’ve been planning this idea all along, but the winter

weather has slowed those plans. “Too many customers standing around, (they) come in, somebody wants to sit down (and) seating not available,” Toby said. “Customers have approached us about bringing children or things like that. Can’t sit them three in a row, four in a row, so we decided to throw a couple tables in.” “We’re trying to accommodate all people of all ages from children to the elderly,” Katie said. “Some kids have a hard time reaching the counter so we thought it was a good idea, my husband and I, to add more tables and chairs and that way at their choice or whoever wants to can sit in the other room.” Among some other improvements, the restaurant now has a new refrigerator, new stainless steel sinks and the Tylers are considering keeping the store open longer than their regular hours of 4 a.m. to 2 p.m. For the last five months, Brandy Mobley and Terri Sheperd have manned the kitchen and served the customers. Now, the restaurant has also brought on Jessica Drake to keep the restaurant open longer throughout the day. “At people’s request, we want to expand our hours and that’s why we’re training the new cook,” Katie said. “We’re going to try and do that and see how it works out... The morning shift girls work so hard all day, I can’t work them

that harder (and) longer hours.” Katie said a time isn’t set yet whether it’s 7 p.m. or 8 p.m., but she insists if they still have food, the restaurant will stay open. “We don’t have to close just because it’s closing time,” Katie

said. “If we still have food and people are coming in, we’ll gladly feed them.” Katie said she also makes it a point of pride that they try to buy their meats and products locally to keep

see JoAn’s, page 7B

Jesse Brown/Democrat-News

Above: The renovated area will accommodate more visitors such as handicapped persons and children. Owners Toby and Katie Tyler have been wanting to renovate the room, but the winter weather slowed down the project.

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Top: General Manager Brandy Mobley (right) and cook/server Terri Shepherd (left) serves the customers from 4 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Center: Owner and Manager Katie Tyler (right) and cook/server Jessica Drake (left) works the register helping a customer pay their tab at Joan’s Drive-In Thursday, Feb. 27. Bottom: The diner seats 12 people at Joan’s Drive-In from 4 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Owners Toby and Katie Tyler are looking into keeping the restaurant open longer throughout the day.

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Robyn Leimkuehler takes over family’s insurance business

Jesse Brown/Democrat-News

Above: Robyn Leimkuehler works diligently behind her desk in her office at Leimkuehler Insurance Services, LLC, Tuesday, March 4. Robyn became owner of the business on Jan. 1, this year.

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Above: The owners and employees of both Leimkuehler Insurance Services and Charlie’s Appliance Sales and Service pose in front of the businesses’ new sign back in October 2010. Front row, from left to right: Robyn Leimkuehler, Judy Leimkuehler, Don Leimkuehler and Charlie Leimkuehler. Back Row, from left to right: Brandy Scott, Chuck Lewis and Jeff Chevalier.

by Jesse Brown Staff Writer Robyn Leimkuehler has taken the reins of a family business and is forging on with the values instilled by those before her. Owner/Manager Robyn, along with her husband, Charlie, bought Leimkuehler Insurance Services, LLC, previously owned by her in-laws, Judy and Don Leimkuehler, on Jan. 1. The transition to owning the business has been a slow burn for Robyn, but time and guidance has helped her step up to the plate. “I decided to get my insurance license when they were on vacation and one of their employees walked out at lunch,” Robyn said. “Didn’t tell us that they weren’t coming back. Nothing. They walked out for lunch and just never came back.” At the time, Robyn primarily served functions a receptionist performs and there was one remaining insurance agent when this incident occurred. “I decided at that

point, that I was going to get my insurance license,” Robyn said. “Because then at least, if they were gone on vacation, I would be here to help and do the insurance.” Robyn received her insurance license in 2001, but didn’t become a full-time employee of what was then called Century Insurance and Auction Services until February 2004. She said since 2004, Don has been grooming her to take over the business until his passing last July. “He led me from 2004 until 2013, so he just kind of instilled in me the values of what he knew best and how to treat customers,” Robyn said. “He was a good teacher.” One of these values instilled in Robyn is treating customers like people, not just another number. “Treating them with kindness and respect,” Robyn said. “Making sure that when someone walks out this door, that they know what coverage they have and they know that they’re

going to be well taken care of.” Robyn said she doesn’t think she’ll make many changes because the lessons that Don provided made sense. She said she was actually relying on Don being here for further guidance, but that Judy’s involvement still helps. Don and Judy started Century Insurance and Auction Services in the late 1980s and with Leimkuehler Insurance Services, LLC., now passing to Robyn, it has remained in the family for nearly a quarter of a century. Robyn said she would like to keep the business in the family. “I would like to. I’m running out of family,” Robyn said, with a laugh. Robyn said her son, Nick, is being groomed to take over Charlie’s Appliances one day and her daughter, Megan, is focusing on a nursing career. If not her family, she said she would at least like to see the business go to someone who is like family. “Our slogan for the last several years has

been ‘It’s our family taking care of your family,’” Robyn said. “I think that says it. We want you to feel like you’re family and that’s how we try to treat everybody.” Contact Jesse Brown at

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JoAn’s continued from page 6B

them in business. “We order meat fresh everyday from Patricia’s,” Katie said. “We call in the order and pick it up that same day. Our meat is never frozen.” The popularity of Joan’s Drive-In breakfast items has also prompted the Tylers to offer breakfast all day, including their new three-egg omelet option, which is made however the customer wants it. Katie said if anyone else has any ideas for improvement, they’ll listen because they want to know how they can accommodate them. “This restaurant has been here for over 70 years and we’re thor-

oughly enjoying it,” Katie said. “Our goal is to keep it going. Keep it Joan’s, same phone

number, same everything. Same great food.” Contact Jesse Brown at


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8B FRIDAY, MARCH 7, 2014


MSDC continues to create business opportunities by Stan Moore MSDC Director The current unemployment rate for Saline County is less than 4.50 percent – down from 8.20 percent one year ago according to Bill Riggins, executive director of the Marshall-Saline Economic Development Corp (MSDC). That’s a good thing, right? The answer is “Yes” and “No” depending on whether you are an employer or an employee. According to Riggins, during 2012 and early into 2013, Saline County saw several new businesses start up, along with several existing businesses expanding their operations which created the new jobs and resulted in the current unemployment rate. Many of those same companies are now challenged to maintain a full work force and are recruiting workers from over 50 miles away. An action plan to address this issue and support continued growth of businesses in Saline County is an ongoing discussion at the monthly MSDC committee meetings. The MSDC committees were established in early 2013 as part of the implementation phase of the Strategic Economic Development Plan for Saline County, which was completed in late 2012. Currently, the MSDC committees for Business and Education, Marketing and Immigration and Globalization meet on the fourth Wednesday of each month at the MSDC office. The MSDC committees address issues related to Saline County that were identified in the Saline County Plan. One such action plan related to employment issues is the Certified Work Ready Community project. Missouri was one of the first four states in the country to offer the program and MSDC filed an application in January of 2013 to participate. Saline County was among the first 13 counties in the state to get approval for the project. Goals for Saline County were assigned by the Missouri Workforce Development Board and each county was given a two-year timeframe for achieving the assigned goals. The project offers a benefit to local employers as well as the job-seeker and over 36 Saline County businesses support the program. Currently, Saline County has reached nearly 70 percent of the requirements of becoming a Certified Work Ready Community. Other initiatives coming from the Business & Education Committee meetings included the collaboration with the Saline County business community and Missouri Valley College to make internships available for students. The partnership with MSDC and Missouri Valley College in launching the Marshall-Saline Entrepreneurial Association was also established and continues to meet on a monthly basis. An “Incubator Project” resulted in office space being made available at 114 N.

Lafayette Ave. in Marshall for use by entrepreneurs and others as temporary workspace for “start-up” businesses. The Immigration and Globalization Committee has resulted in GED, Citizenship and English as a Second Language (ESL) classes being offered on a regular basis and at times that accommodate the work schedule for local participants. Another issue being addressed by MSDC that was revealed through the committees was the discovery that possibly 30 percent or more of the local workforce that works in Marshall, does not live in Marshall. The MSDC committees have proven to be an effective format for addressing issues that are consistent with the MSDC Mission Statement which states, “MarshallSaline Development Corporation shall strengthen Saline County by supporting the expansion of existing businesses and industry, and recruiting new business and industry into Saline County.” MSDC works closely with the Missouri Department of Economic Development and in particular with the Missouri Partnership organization which was created to promote Missouri with the intention of bringing new business and industry into the state. MSDC receives requests for information from the Missouri Partnership throughout the year on businesses that are considering locating or expanding into Missouri. During 2013, MSDC received 34 requests for information from the Missouri Partnership and submitted a response for 12 of the projects that seemed to be a good fit for Saline County. In addition to the Missouri Partnership, MSDC worked directly with 19 other companies during 2013 on possible expansion or new ventures in Saline County.

Jesse Brown/Democrat-News

Executive Director Bill Riggins and Director Stan Moore head up the Marshall-Saline Development Corportion, which strives to enhance Saline County, Missouri by strengthening existing industry/business, bringing new commercial and industrial development into the county and cultivating entrepreneurial endeavors from within the community. Working with the Missouri Partnership and directly with companies interested in Saline County creates an ongoing challenge. Riggins said, “This is where a great deal of what MSDC does on a regular basis goes unnoticed because of the requirements for confidentiality.” State and local economic development programs, as well as the companies themselves, forbid the public disclosure of exploratory projects. According to Riggins, although the public may never be aware of these activities, without an ongoing local economic development system in place, Saline County may never be considered for these projects. So, we have to respond to every inquiry regarding a new business or a business expansion and treat each one as an opportunity to strengthen Saline County. The current board of directors for MSDC include: Jene Crook, president; Larry Holland, vice president; Scott Hartwig, secretary/treasurer. Other directors include Greg Swift, Kyle Gibbs, Bud Summers, Chris

Wilson and Wes Craig. MSDC is available to support, mentor, and facilitate the start-up or expansion of new business and industry and can be contacted at the office located at 1455 W. Arrow St., calling 660886-6889 or the website

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Tanner Fennewald laying some roots in Marshall by Jesse Brown Staff Writer After studying and graduating at Missouri Valley College, where he happened to meet his wife on his first day of classes, Tanner Fennewald is taking steps to lay his roots in Marshall. Originally from Vandalia, Fennewald came to MVC in 2005 and graduated in 2010 majoring in marketing with his minor in sociology. After that, he received his masters in management through Lindenwood University, but still using MVC as the base. “Me and my wife have stayed here ever since,” Fennewald said. “We love it here.” Having previously been employed by Farm Bureau Insurance, Fennewald joined Northwestern Insurance in November 2013. “I was doing the same thing, just not in the financial world. It was more of the property and auto (insurance),” Fennewald said. “We sold life and health and did that kind of thing, but with my education and all my degrees, I really wanted to be able to just (focus) on financial planning.” Fennewald said with Northwestern Mutual Insurance, he likes to take a broad approach to helping people with their financial plans. “The biggest thing that we do is extensive planning, so we try to create financial security for

everybody,” Fennewald said. “That means different things for different people, so what we like to do is address what would happen if you would die too soon, what would happen if you would become sick and injured, make sure that you have sufficient assets for retirement and then look at any other type of financial planning that you would like to do to help you reach any goals that you may have.” Northwestern’s home office is based in Milwaukee, Wis., but Fennewald spends his time between his office in Kansas City and his office in Marshall. “I’m probably in my Kansas City office once or twice a week,” Fennewald said. “It just fluctuates because it kind of depends on who I start working with or who my clientele (is).” On Tuesday, Jan. 28, Fennewald joined Marshall Chamber of Commerce with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at his Marshall office, located at 1060 S. Odell Ave, Suite 102. “It’s just nice to be part of a community of business owners that you can talk business and not feel out of place, but you can also see so many successful people and be around success that it just makes you want to get to work the next day and continue moving on and continue growing your own personal business,” Fennewald said. Fennewald said this

Jesse Brown/Democrat-News

Tanner Fennewald (center) cuts the ribbon for his ribbon-cutting ceremony entrance into Marshall Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday, Jan. 28. business is not a transactional one, that they want to be involved with their customers for the long haul. “I am in the business of building long-term business relationships. Though, someone may believe they need one particular area covered, it is my job as their financial representative to discuss the broad picture,” Fennewald said. “We start from the beginning and move our way to their goals and plans.” On top of being a new chamber member, Fennewald will also become the next president for the Rotary Club. Having been married for a little over a year now, Fennewald said they plan to have children and they plan to bring them up in Marshall.

“For us, we’re not here just to move a career and then later on four or five years down the road, get

out of Marshall,” Fennewald said. “We want to be here. The more we can be involved in the com-

munity, the better we can grow with it.” Contact Jesse Brown at

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10B FRIDAY, MARCH 7, 2014


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