Youth Leadership Month: Montgomery County Thrives Because of Its Young Business Leaders

21 Feb 2024

February is National Youth Leadership Month and our team at the Montgomery County Action Council (MCAC) is thrilled to highlight local business leaders and entrepreneurs in the region. These professionals represent the next generation of Montgomery County and they are actively building a future for the region. Here are a few of our members and the great work they do.

If you have a great business idea that can improve Montgomery County and its surrounding communities, join the Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge. Students in 6th to 12th grade can compete as individuals or in groups to pitch their ideas and share their business proposals. Mark your calendar for Friday, March 1 for a chance to win $1,500!  

Bryan Clubine – Community National Bank Independence

Community National Bank & Trust was founded in Chanute, Kansas in 1987 and continues to provide personal and business banking services today. Bryan Clubine plays an active role in leading this bank and shares his financial insights with the community. He currently sits on the Independence Main Street Board of Directors to promote small business growth and entrepreneurial development in the area.  

Malory Dean – George Realtors

George Realtors is a family-owned organization that provides real estate services to Coffeyville, Independence, Caney, Cherryvale, Neodesha, and surrounding communities. Malory Dean is one of their top local agents who is passionate about Southeast Kansas. She is based in Coffeyville and is happy to help you start your life here. 

Miranda Bruening – Echelon Arch + Design

Echelon Arch + Design is led by Independence, Kansas native Miranda Bruening. She and her team bring timeless design to rural elegance. They take pride in transforming spaces into timeless reflections of their surroundings. Bruening and her design team work with a variety of industries including retail, education, government, historical, spiritual, industrial, and corporate sites. Miranda was the recipient of MCAC’s 2023 Curtis Lavine Entrepreneur of the Year award. 

Joslyn Kusiak – Kelly & Kusiak Law Office

Joslyn M. Kusiak is a Kansas licensed attorney who is the sole business owner of and lawyer at Kelly & Kusiak Law Office LLC in Independence, Kansas. Kusiak’s current legal practice includes estate planning and administration, business formation and providing ongoing business consulting, and civil litigation. Kusiak also serves as municipal court judge for the cities of Independence and Cherryvale.

Kusiak presently serves on the Kansas Continuing Legal Education Board as the Chair, the Kansas Supreme Court’s Rural Justice Initiative Committee, and Kansas Bar Association Board of Governors as the Kansas Bar Association Delegate to the American Bar Association. In June 2018, Kusiak was honored with the Kansas Bar Association Outstanding Young Lawyer Award. In October 2022, Kusiak was the recipient of the Graduate of the Last Decade (GOLD) award by the Washburn Law School Alumni Association.

Kusiak is a 2006 graduate of Independence Senior High, 2009 graduate of Missouri State University, and 2012 graduate of Washburn University School of Law. She served as staff editor for the Washburn Law Journal, externed for the Honorable Steve Leben at the Kansas Court of Appeals, clerked with the Kansas Highway Patrol, and interned at the Washburn Law Civil Litigation Clinic.

Dillon Oder – Commercial Bank Coffeyville

Commercial Bank in Coffeyville has served Southeast Kansas since 1871. It provides personal and business banking services, along with loans and other financial support. It is run in part by Dillon Oder, the current Vice President. Oder recently attended the Young Bank Officers of Kansas Conference and was recently awarded Coffeyville Area Chamber of Commerce’s Citizen of the Year.   

Jessica Hensley – Heritage Homes Realty, Inc.

Jessica Hensley is an Associate Broker and CEO at Heritage Homes Realty. She started her real estate career in 2003 and has continued to grow over the past 20 years. She specializes in selling farms, ranches, and rural properties in Southeast Kansas. Whether you want a starter home in town or are looking to invest in land, Hensley can help you.  

Become a MCAC Member and Join the Top Young Professional Leaders in Southeast Kansas

When you join MCAC, you support the economic development of Montgomery County and surrounding areas. Your membership allows our team to work to improve housing options, recruit job creators, and support economic drivers in the area. From finance professionals to artists, there’s a place for everyone in Montgomery County. Join MCAC today and see how your support helps you grow your business, industry, and community as a whole.