Alumni Spotlight: Amanda Kastler '03
College is usually a time for exploration, when young adults stumble through trial and error to eventually arrive at a viable career path. We all know that switching majors two or three times in the course of four or five years is very normal, but some people go into their college years knowing exactly what they want to do—and actually end up doing it!
Amanda Kastler ’03 knew in high school that she wanted to be an accountant. “I don’t have an interesting story for that,” she laughed. But when you have over ten years in not just the same field but the same company, you don’t need an exciting story for how you chose that path. Amanda’s first job after graduating from Drury was with Elliott, Robinson, and Co., LLP, in Springfield, Mo., and that’s where she has been ever since. She graduated in December of 2003 and began working there in January of 2004, and over the last ten years, she has transformed from a fresh-faced college grad to a wise and well-versed pro who now mentors those just starting out.
When asked about the benefits of being with only one company for her professional life thus far, Amanda explained, “You get to see some of your ideas come to fruition, and you get to see long-term ideas play out.” The staff at Elliott, Robinson, and Co., which boasts seven Drury alumni, constantly strives to avoid complacency. This is where Amanda sees the biggest benefit of regularly bringing recent college graduates to the staff. To keep things fresh, she enjoys listening to their unique perspectives and incorporating those ideas.
In January of this year, Amanda was named the first female partner at Elliott, Robinson, and Co., and on October 10, she was honored by the Springfield Business Journal as one of its Most Influential Women of 2014. “I was quite surprised when I learned that I was nominated, because there are a lot of women in this community who do great things,” Amanda said. Several other women in the Drury community were honored in the SBJ’s 15th class of influential women, including Summer (Massey) Bryant ’02, Jann Holland, and Cora (Durbin) Scott ’90.
When Amanda is not working, she loves giving back to the community that has given her so much. She serves on the Harmony House Board and the Breech School of Business Advisory Committee, and she especially keeps in touch with Dr. Penny Clayton, professor of Accounting. Amanda is looking forward to expansion in the company and stays busy raising her own 3-year-old and 1-year-old little Panthers.
Written by Brooke Dacquisto ’16