Truman Heartland Community Foundation Announces 2023 Toast to Our Towns Awards and Honorees

An Annual Celebration of Local Philanthropy

JACKSON COUNTY, MO (August 16, 2023) - Truman Heartland Community Foundation (THCF) is pleased to announce this year's Toast to Our Towns honorees and Citizens of the Year. These amazing recipients will be recognized at the 28th Annual Toast to Our Towns Gala, presented by Blue Ridge Bank and Trust Company, on Saturday, September 23, 2023, beginning at 6:00 p.m. at the Sheraton Kansas City Hotel at Crown Center, located at 2345 McGee St. in Kansas City, Missouri.

THCF honorees and Citizens lend their time, talents, and position to bolster their communities. Although their areas of impact are varied, all of the honorees are united by a common goal; to improve and enrich their local communities.

2023 Honorees

THCF Humanitarian of the Year – LaShawn Walker, Founder & CEO, Suburban Balance

Corporate Citizen of the Year – Stewardship Capital

Heartland Service Award – Hope House

Dr. Paul M. Thomson Professional Advisor of the Year – Lori Watson

2023 Citizens of the Year

  • Blue Springs, nominated by Mayor Carson Ross – Russel Clark
  • Grain Valley, nominated by Mayor Mike Todd – Marcia (Marty) Napier
  • Grandview, nominated by Mayor Leonard Jones – Benard Teevan
  • Independence, nominated by Mayor Rory Rowland – Bob Spradling
  • Lake Lotawana & Lee’s Summit, nominated by Mayors Rasmussen and Baird – Carl Chinnery
  • Lake Tapawingo, nominated by Mayor Tom Rodenberg – John Brayden
  • Oak Grove, nominated by Mayor Dana Webb – Becky and Randy Messer
  • Raytown, nominated by Mayor Mike McDonough – Martha Cockerell
  • Sugar Creek, nominated by Mayor Mike Larson – Patrick Casey

A private reception sponsored by Centerpoint Medical Center for the Citizens of the Year will be held on Friday, September 8, 2023, at the home of Drs. Nancy Newhouse and Paul McGraw.

Truckmovers is the gracious sponsor of the cocktail reception happening just before the gala and Speaks Chapels is sponsoring the Mix, Mingle, and Music after-party, wrapping up the evening with dancing and smooth jazz.

Table sponsorships are still available, and individual tickets can now be purchased at, by calling 816-836-8898, or by using the QR code below. The 2023 Toast to Our Towns Gala is a celebration of local philanthropy presented by Blue Ridge Bank and Trust Company to benefit Truman Heartland Community Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

Gala RSVP QR code

<<< Use this QR code to reserve your table or purchase individual tickets.

About THCF: Truman Heartland Community Foundation is a public charity committed to improving area communities by promoting and serving private giving for the public good. Founded in 1982, THCF serves individuals who, through their private giving, wish to support the public good in the most tax-wise and effective manner. Through THCF, donors can set up their own family foundations, scholarship funds, field of interest funds, endowment funds, charitable gift annuities, and many other charitable vehicles that utilize the foundation's shared resources to maximize the impact of their philanthropic dollars. In addition to donor services, THCF provides asset development for nonprofit organizations, offers competitive grant opportunities to nonprofits, assists organizations in planned giving, and serves as a change leader in addressing community issues. For more information, visit or call 816-836-8189.