Collaboration to Action

Civic Engagement Conference Plenary Speaker             

Curt Brungardt               Bridget Dierks

Collaboration to Action: Civic Engagement That Has Impact

10:00 - 11:30 AM

This session will explore the key elements that define successful partnerships of higher education and community partnerships from both perspectives. Speakers will address higher education's purpose, role and civic engagement best practices, as well as present a local example of university partnerships with place-based community programming to highlight the importance of higher education’s involvement in impacting neighborhoods in meaningful ways.

Dr. Curt Brungardt, an Omer G. Voss Distinguished Professor at Fort Hays State University, is the Executive Director of the Center for Civic Leadership. He is the senior member and creator of the Department of Leadership Studies and the co-founder of the Center for Civic Leadership. He specializes in political leadership, social change, and community organizing. Dr. Brungardt is an author and co-author of several books and numerous articles and has presented over 150 workshops throughout the world. However, he is best known as a social entrepreneur creating and developing programs, both inside and outside of academia, that directly impact people lives.

Bridget Dierks is Grants Program Officer for the Community Foundation of the Ozarks.  She is responsible for the development and operation of grant programming through the Metropolitan Springfield and Coover Regional grant programs, as well as Field of Interest , Arts Programming Sustainability, Historic Preservation, Ripley Butler Clay grants for the arts, and the Weaver orthodontic and Webster County dental funds.  She also directs the Youth Empowerment Project of the Ozarks, which focuses on youth philanthropy in the southern tier of Missouri.  Bridget is a native of Cabool, Missouri and a graduate of Houston High School.  She received a double undergraduate degree in communication and professional writing in 2005 and a graduate degree in 2009, all from Missouri State University.  Bridget is a member of  Leadership Springfield’s Class 29. She serves on the board of directors of the Watershed Committee of the Ozarks, Community Partnership of the Ozarks, Missouri State College of Arts and Letters and Public Affairs Committee, and the Network of the Springfield Chamber of Commerce.