• Heroes can be closer than you think

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  • You don’t have to look far to see a superhero in my neighborhood. Donna Pittman is the “Queen of Western Independence” and owner of Curt’s Famous Meats in Maywood.
    Donna currently serves on the boards of the Independence Chamber of Commerce and the Northwest Communities Development Corporation. She is president of the Maywood Merchant’s Association and a member of the Western Independence Commercial Retail Team, a subcommittee of a coalition of residents, churches, organizations and business owners. She recently organized a fundraiser hosted by a local radio station to benefit the Van Horn High School booster club and is one of the “divas” organizing the popular annual Cops Shop BBQ, supporting the police substation in Englewood. If it’s happening in western Independence, Donna is involved. All this while operating a successful business selling high-quality meat to folks with discriminating taste!
    Monte Short is active in the Procter neighborhood, owns business property in Englewood and holds office in the Englewood Business Association. He and his wife, Stacie, are responsible for the successful Neighborhood Improvement District and the landscaping and ornamental lighting in the medians.
    The Shorts have created the vision for the new Englewood Arts and Entertainment District and are working on a community arts project along Winner Road. They are a driving force behind housing redevelopment efforts through the Northwest Communities Development Corporation. Stacie is adept at locating resources and investigating funding opportunities. Among numerous other projects, Monte recently completed remodeling the former school at St. Ann’s Catholic Church prior to the relocation of Fairmount Community Center services and programs.
    Ultimately the efforts of Donna, Monte, Stacie and other individuals and organizations continue to build on the outstanding action of Sen. Victor Callahan and Independence School District Superintendent Jim Hinson, in bringing seven schools, those kids and their families into the caring community of western Independence. Their leadership and continued commitment are building a strong future for our citizens and our city. After an impressive Extreme School Makeover volunteer effort, we watch the much anticipated transition in the schools and neighborhoods take place.
    And it’s back to the business of government influencing local change for our favorite senator. We’re proud to know the minority leader of the Senate, and we’re fortunate to have Sen. Callahan’s heart and home in Independence.
    These extraordinary individuals are hometown superheroes, using their unique skills, gifts and talents to benefit us all.

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