"We learn when we squirm."
That's a saying Kim McCully-Mobley has been dishing out to her students, interns and friends for well over 30 years. And, she's been squirming herself for 50 years.
"In fact, I was born squirming!" She laughs.
"Some of the best things in life happen to us when we get outside our comfort zones. Too often, we bail on things that cause us much consternation or discomfort. I learned some valuable life lessons by pushing past those moments to see what was on the other side. I encourage my students to do the same. Once they trust me, I watch them grow," she stated.
Self-described as a cowgirl/gypsy/historian/storyteller, McCully-Mobley has been an employee of Drury University since the spring of 1992. She spent the first 11 years running the Aurora Satellite campus (which closed in 2003) and serving as an adjunct faculty member in the English and communications departments. She began teaching online courses about 11 years ago and has worked as an online mentor, teaching blended and seated courses on campus, in Lebanon and Monett.
"I believe in the Drury Difference. Drury has been like a second home to me through the years. I love the people who work here, the students and the value system that seems to be in place here. Everyone matters. Every idea is important," she explained.
McCully-Mobley holds an associate's degree in journalism from Missouri Southern State University in Joplin, where she worked on the award-winning newspaper: The Chart. She holds a bachelor's degree in English from Drury University and a master's from Drury in education/human services. She is currently working on additional graduate work in literacy and special reading.
She also piloted a dual credit program at the high school level this past year whereby students were exposed to an online component as part of the course. She has presented her research and findings on digital storytelling, technology in the classroom and social media at conferences for Morenet, Missouri Distance Learning and Write to Learn.
She has a 30+ year career in journalism, having served as a newspaper editor in Monett and Aurora for over 20 years. She has earned international, national, state and regional awards for her writing and has covered tragedies, murder trials, Presidential visits, big turnips, white squirrels and Pulitzer Prize winners. She served as president of the Southwest Missouri Society of Professional Journalists, the Aurora Rotary Club, the Ozark Press Association and the Aurora Education Association.
A longtime member of the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors and the Aurora Chamber of Commerce, she is currently the president of Main Street Aurora and has been a 20-year board of director member. In 2004, she earned distinctions as the Loyd R. Ellis Community Service Award winner from the Aurora Chamber of Commerce. She was also named the 2007 Teacher of the Year at Aurora High School through the local education association.
Her passions include her faith, her family and friends, community service, literacy, Ozark folklore, storytelling, photography and writing. She has been a part of the Ozark Writing Project/Digital Storytelling Institute at Southwest Missouri State University and has participated in work at the Ozark Writers' Colony in Eureka Springs in 2010 and 2011. She has already booked her stay for 2012 and plans to help the colony with fundraising and publicity efforts. She makes her home on a small farm in Barry County with her husband, Al, of seven years, and her 21-year-old son, Jake, who is a senior at Drury.
McCully-Mobley has taught in the communication arts department at Aurora High School for the past seven years. She is also the yearbook advisor and the co-sponsor for Student Council. A 1979 graduate of AHS, she is an outspoken Houn' Dawg who takes the time to make sure students know the town's history and the colorful history of its mascot.
She heads a family publishing business known in the area as Spirit Publishing. The company is devoted to promoting the region's history, culture and stories through a variety of methods. She is currently tying up loose ends on a memoir/coffee table book called: The Road Home: A Seasonal Journey. She will also be traveling to Southern Illinois University in July as part of a Civil War research grant funded through the National Endowment for the Arts and Humanities.
"We can only know where we're going when we know where we've been," she stated.
Steven Bryant has over 35 years of experience in management, including 28 as the CEO of a not-for-profit corporation, with a wholly-owned, for-profit subsidiary, and a stint as a U.S. Air Force officer during the Vietnam conflict. He served as Executive Director and CEO of the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) from 1974-2002. The NBRC is the occupational certification and licensure agency for respiratory therapists and pulmonary function technologists in the United States. Mr. Bryant was the organization's first full-time staff member and during his time with the company the numbers of credentials awarded grew from about 2,400 to more than 250,000 and all 48 of the states that regulate the practice of respiratory care contracted with the NBRC for use of its examinations for licensure. They also encouraged the international growth of respiratory care by working with the Consejo Mexicano de Inhaloterapia, AC to conduct job analysis research and develop examinations now offered for credentialing in more than 10 countries by the Latin American Board for Professional Certification in Respiratory Care.
In 1982, a subsidiary corporation was formed, Applied Measurement Professionals, Inc. (AMP) to vertically integrate the NBRC's test development and administration functions and gain independence from Educational Testing Service (ETS), author of the College Board exams. Mr. Bryant was AMP's first President and CEO (1982-2002). The company has grown from only doing work for the NBRC to developing and administering examinations for over 100 other occupations, including real estate salespersons and brokers in 12 states. In addition, AMP has a Management Services Division responsible for association management for 17 national organizations, as well as a technology division, known as Logic eXtension Resources (LXR), developers of test software which has over 30,000 users worldwide. AMP now has a staff of 168 and a national network of more than 200 computerized assessment centers offering examinations six days a week to about 500,000 candidates annually. The consolidated NBRC/AMP entity has gone from an annual budget of $125,000 during my first year in 1974 to over $30 million today.
Part of AMP's profitable growth was fueled by acquisitions that he accomplished, purchasing and merging a defunct printing company into our operation in 1987, purchasing the real estate testing program from American College Testing (ACT) in 1991 and acquiring computerized testing capability through acquisition of LXR in 1996. In 1996, the company developed a four-year plan to convert AMP from pencil/paper testing to computerized testing, highlighted by negotiation of an agreement with H & R Block, the world's largest tax preparer, to install and operate a national network of computerized AMP Assessment Centers within Block offices across the United States. The network opened in 2000 and has now successfully given over 2,000,000 examinations. For more about the capabilities of the two organizations where Mr. Bryant spent most of his professional career, visit their websites www.nbrc.org and www.goAMP.com.
Educationally, Steven Bryant's undergraduate degree is in Business Administration, with a major in Industrial Management, from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville (1971). He completed the MBA program at Rockhurst University in Kansas City in 1982, including the "Executive Semester" program. Mr. Bryant graduated with honors from both schools and maintained a 4.0 grade point average during his MBA studies, which he completed at nights and on weekends while working full time.
Steve Bryant has been "semi-retired" since 2002 (at age 52), and has continued to work part-time for the NBRC and AMP, writing most of their marketing materials, annual report, newsletters and assisting his successor as CEO. Steven Bryant and his wife Jill have three children; Jackie, 30, Ross and Claire, twins who are 19, three dogs, two cats and two horses. He enjoys boating at Table Rock Lake, old cars, especially of the 60's muscle car variety and playing with his grandson, Jacob, who is now six. Jacob loves model trains and calls himself a "train driving man", so they spend a lot of time in the basement "playing trains."
David Ulbrich teaches History at the CCPS campus in St. Robert. Mr. Ulbrich is a historian at the U.S. Army Engineer School at Ft. Leonard Wood. He received the 2003-2004 General Lemuel Sheppard Dissertation Fellowship from the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation. Mr. Ulbrich earned his doctorate in history from Temple University.
In April 2011 he published his first book: David J. Ulbrich, Preparing for Victory: Thomas Holcomb and the Making of the Modern Marine Corps, 1936-1943.Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 2011.