Tasked with developing solutions on how to further create a more diverse and inclusive climate in our business community and our community at-large. To achieve a significant transformation, this collaborative, sustainable effort will include community conversations and events, launch and monitor initiatives and programs, benchmark and assess programs, celebrate and champion diversity, and continually educate our community on the value of diversity and inclusion.
The Chamber organized and deploys the business community through these work groups to improve livability. These work group are co-chaired by young professions from YPN, but are open to the entire chamber membership to join and serve.
Co-Chairs: Sergio Rizo and Heidi Smorstad
Chamber Staff Liaison: Ashton Chapman
Ashton Chapman, PhD, is a researcher, educator, and community organizer. Her cross-sector work includes experience in higher education, healthcare, nonprofit, and social enterprise spaces. Across all of her work, Ashton is committed to the creation and sustainability of equitable practices, programs, and policies that center community voice and honor community expertise. As the Founder and Director of Social Grove, a national research collaborative, and a Culture of Health Leader with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Ashton works directly with community residents and leaders to acknowledge and celebrate diversity, champion inclusion and belonging, and address social and health inequities by redistributing power, building community, and transforming systems. In partnership with the Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce, Ashton looks forward to working alongside the Joplin community to ensure that all residents have the resources they need to live their happiest, healthiest, fullest lives.