As the swirl of crimson and gold leaves blow across the lawn into an accumulation of 2022 almost past; I feel a sense of GRATITUDE for all of the milestones and traditions November brings. Hopefully you’re snacking on full sized chocolate treats or delicious multi-colored candy corn from Halloween while you peruse through the Greater Missouri newsletter and website.

Election Day is November 8th and there is no civic engagement as important as VOTING! Voter Notification Cards are full of pertinent information, locations, access to sample ballots and QR Codes specific to you, please examine it carefully before Election Day.  Show up at the polls prepared, well informed and ready to make your decision.  After this election, may we continue to stay knowledgeable and proactive in our local, state and national civic engagements. 

Last month your Greater Missouri Board of Directors held our fall meeting virtually in anticipation of a two-day in-person retreat to be held in St. Louis in January. Our Board approved a phenomenal group of women who will represent the Class of 2023 and who will be notified of their selection this month following the graduation for the Class of 2022. We look forward to welcoming these women as they become part of our powerful state-wide network of leaders.

The Board also voted to approve your 2023 Executive Committee the members of which I am so grateful for their willingness to serve. I look forward with great anticipation as we meet in person in the new year to renew, recommit and strategize how we continue to make Greater Missouri the “premier statewide leadership experience for exceptional women leaders across the State of Missouri”.

We are indebted to our Board of Directors and the leadership provided. Special accolades are extended to a few. Connie Taylor ‘20 from Ameren is our newest board member having filled in for Stephanie Banker ‘12 who moved out of state to accept another position. I know I will enjoy meeting Connie in person as she has been an engaged new member already. Board terms end in December for Marcelle Pires ’10 and Loreli Wilson ’15.  Marcelle has served GMLF on our Board of Directors, is a past Treasurer of the Board and has been a mentor and advisor to many including me. Loreli has done a timely, necessary, and exceptional job of providing the Board with fresh perspectives that have given us expanded insights into inclusionary practices during her years as a member of our Board Management and Sustainability Committee. Special thanks to Marcelle and Loreli who will continue to be champions for GMLF at Bayer and Veteran’s United Home Loans.

We want to thank Sarah Dubbert for her extended service as the Treasurer in 2022.  She stepped up to the plate when Stephanie Banker moved; providing us another year of her time and expertise in that role and we are grateful for her generosity! She will remain on our board and provide continued oversight to the Finance Committee while she excels at her new position as President of Commerce Bank-Columbia. She will be a valued advisor for our new Treasurer Dana Strueby who is a partner at Shook, Hardy & Bacon, LLP.

Greater Missouri Leadership Foundation Executive Committee for 2023 is as follows: Roz Cochran – President, Cheryl Stuckmeyer – 1st Vice President, Darline Mabins – 2nd Vice President, Stephanie Johnson – Secretary, Dana Strueby – Treasurer, and Dr. Carolyn Chrisman – Immediate Past President. I am honored to work with such committed professionals.

November 4th will mark the commencement of the Class of 2022 during Session IV in St. Louis.  We are grateful this class of Challengers had the opportunity to physically participate in person for all four sessions. They’ve been able to spend time learning from our presenters and getting to know each other and our Executive Director, Katie Steele Danner as well as other Greater Missouri Leaders who go to great measures to ensure every Challenger has a rich experience.  Personally, it has been a pleasure sharing space with you and I welcome you as Alumnae – CONGRATULATIONS Class of 2022 and thank you to the regional planning team for your months of work for this session to be a success!  

As all plan for the holiday celebrations and family gatherings that are already beginning, please keep a few things top of mind.  We the Board are honored and thankful you consider Greater MO in your giving. Your support in the form of donations (in-kind and monetary), sponsorships, and TALENT are not taken lightly!  We are thankful for your corporate selections, candidate nominations and interest to join GMLF to excel as we educate and inspire women leaders to make a positive difference as individuals in helping address problems each feels are important.  We are thankful to our growing and sustained Alumnae for paying your annual dues or becoming life-time dues paying members; hosting us in your homes and places of business; serving as hospitality hosts during our sessions; planning our sessions, alumnae conference, and/or Women of the Year events; being active in community volunteering; and staying engaged!  

All of these actions of care are Greater MO CRITICAL! In this month of giving thanks – we praise all of you!