Aug. 22, 2011
Mizzou's Statewide Outreach program continued on August 18, as Athletic Department staff members, representatives from the Mizzou Alumni Association (MAA), and the Heart of Missouri United Way visited Southwest Missouri. Athletics Director Mike Alden was joined by Executive Associate AD Sarah Reesman, Special Assistant to the AD Gary Link, Director of Marketing Emily Janssen, Director of Game Operations Colleen Lamond and Associate Director of Tickets Operations Brent Lewis. They were accompanied by Tim Rich, Executive Director of the Heart of Missouri United Way, and Steffanie Heffernan, MAA Coordinator of Alumni Relations.
The outreach team began its day in Carthage at the world headquarters of Leggett & Platt. The visit was highlighted by a meeting with CEO Dave Haffner and his executive team.
The group then headed to Joplin for a visit with Kip Stetzler at the State of Missouri Resource, Recovery and Rebuilding Center established by Governor Jay Nixon. Stetzler and his team provided an update on the recovery efforts in Joplin, including a tour of the area affected by the May 22nd storm led by two Missouri National Guard members.
The next stop was Joplin City Hall for lunch with United Way Investment Review Team. This team appointed by the Heart of Missouri United Way (HMUW) and the United Way of Southwest Missouri and Southeast Kansas (UWSWSK) helps distribute funds collected by the HMUW United for Joplin Relief Efforts. Mary Little, Executive Director of the UWSWSK, and Mark Rohr, Joplin City Manager, led a discussion on relief efforts. To date the United for Joplin campaign has raised over $1.7 million, including over $255,000 from the sales of the University of Missouri's "One State. One Spirit. One Mizzou" t-shirts.
While in Joplin the team also visited the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center, site of the One State, One Spirit Classic Men's Basketball exhibition game in October. The Missouri Southern team, led by Assistant Athletic Director, Kevin Greim, gave the group a tour of the facility.
Before leaving Joplin, the team stopped by the Special Olympics office to deliver a commemorative jersey to the parents of Trip Miller, a Special Olympian and huge Mizzou fan that was a victim of the Joplin tornado.
On their way to Lamar, the group visited the Jaspar County MU Extension Office in Carthage. The day concluded at an MAA Picnic hosted by the Southwest Quad Chapter in the Lamar. Tiger Fans received an update on Mizzou Athletics and the United Way from Alden, Link & Rich.
The Statewide Outreach program, which has visited all 114 counties in Missouri, will continue with additional trips planned in the coming months.