Sixty members and guests celebrated the successes of Northwest Missouri Enterprise Facilitation recently at the organization’s annual meeting, January 21, 2016.  Northwest Missouri Enterprise is a nonprofit organization which offers free and confidential business coaching in a six county region.  NWMEF members are a group of over seventy volunteers from six counties, (Atchison, Andrew, Gentry, Holt, Nodaway, and Worth,) who care passionately about the success and sustainability of this rural region.The Facilitation board’s purpose is to assist rural entrepreneurs in creating or maintaining their small business ventures. They do this for the same reason the early pioneers helped their neighbors through the practice of barn raising – to build community spirit and strengthen and sustain small communities for the benefit of the whole region.

The board and guests gathered to acknowledge the accomplishments of 2015. Through the efforts of the organization, 16 new businesses were assisted in their start-ups in the six county area.  The group also celebrated 17 new jobs which resulted from the start-ups. Overall statistics to date were totalled: Since the organization’s beginnings in 2006, NWMEF has helped with 81 new business creations, resulting in 282 jobs. Keli Morris was applauded by all present for her competent business coaching and delivery of NWMEF client services through 2015.

Board Chairman Jerry Ingle also acknowledged the Board’s appreciation for the service of the outgoing Vice Chair, Virginia Vernon. He expressed his thanks for her volunterism and support of the Enterprise Facilitator.  Board members Bob Alldredge and Jim Jacoby were honored by the organization with the Board’s esteemed RAVE award for their exemplary service and efforts above and beyond in assisting the goals of NWMEF. Officers were approved for the year 2016. Incumbents Jerry Ingle, Chairman, Treasurer Jeanne Rost, Secretary Sister Christine Martin were joined by newly elected Vice Chair Ken Henggeler.

Legislators present were Allen Andrews of Missouri’s 5th district and Dan Hegeman, Missouri Senator. All of the guests listened attentively to the three client presentations which were given by Tara Wilmes of Tara Wilmes Insurance, Stanberry, MO, Matt Gaarder of Rapid Elite, Maryville, MO and Cheryl Mitchell, Miss Doyles’ Soapery, Savannah, MO. The clients explained how NWMEF assisted in establishing their now thriving enterprises and thanked the organization and Enterprise Facilitator Keli Morris for the support given.

Jerry Ingle stated, “It is rewarding to me to see the wide scope in all types of enterprises. The ultimate goal (of NWMEF) is to assist anyone trying to establish a new business or grow an existing business and do everything possible to ensure their success. It gives you a good feeling to know you had a small hand in that.”