Let’s Get to Work Fund supports Ozarks’ work ethic, transportation needs

As a longtime avid runner, I know that’s a great pursuit in many respects — healthy living, stress reduction, camaraderie. But it’s not necessarily the best way to commute to work. For that, we’re still mostly reliant on wheels — four, two or as many as needed to power public transportation.

And as part of a family company that’s been dedicated to ensuring reliable transportation since 1957, we know how important it is to maintain our vehicles for all the roles they play in our lives — getting to work, getting to school, getting to church, kids’ activities and the grocery store.

After talking with Community Foundation of the Ozarks President Brian Fogle about pressing needs in the community, the concept behind the Let’s Get to Work initiative seems like a strong fit for a charitable investment. My wife, Stacey, and I are pleased to be one of the inaugural funders.

We know from our company’s experience that the Ozarks’ work ethic is strong. As one of Springfield’s top 10 employers with more than 2,300 associates locally and nearly 70,000 nationwide, workforce development is a very real challenge. The concept of the Let’s Get to Work Fund attempts to bridge barriers facing those who want to be in the workforce or stay in the workforce with the demand among employers for consistent, reliable team members. Many of today’s workforce challenges are difficult to solve, like health and safety concerns, affordable and accessible childcare, and generational demographics. But transportation is one that we should be able to tackle with Ozarks’ ingenuity and participation from the public, private and philanthropic sectors.

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