November Spotlight: Council of Churches of the Ozarks

With a legacy of 50 plus years as a Springfield nonprofit, the Council of Churches of the Ozarks (CCO) has a trusted impact and a growing momentum. Our faith-based “Why” is to improve the quality of life in Southwest Missouri through collaboration. As our region grows, CCO values the voice, perspective, and needs of our population. The opportunity to serve and develop alongside young professionals is a CCO value and priority, especially as the organization moves forward with the dream to amplify how Springfield meets community needs, building leaders who value “we” over “me.”  

CCO recently announced the launch of our multimillion-dollar “Levell Up” capital campaign, named in honor of our founder, Rev. Dorsey Levell. CEO Jaimie Trussell, SRC Holdings CEO Jack Stack, and Levell Up Co-Chair & CCO Board Member Jim Anderson shared that the future headquarters, 3055 E. Division (previously an SRC Holdings property) is the perfect location to improve accessibility of services and unite CCO’s many programs.

Core to CCO’s success is the belief that what unifies people is stronger than what divides them. In that spirit, member churches, business partners, volunteers, and donors serve the needs of our most vulnerable populations: foster children, unsheltered women, hungry families, diverse-abilities.

The Levell Up campaign reflects CCO’s commitment to longevity and the future. The new headquarters will launch the organization into the next 50 years, in partnership with regional visionaries and organizations. While CCO programs adapt to meet the Ozarks’ most pressing needs, Levell Up is an exciting opportunity to improve the upstream focus to help families before they need a food pantry or emergency resources. CCO currently owns several properties throughout the city, and one campus will be a cost-effective solution to conserve dollars and improve services.

According to the 2021 Community Focus Report, children’s health and the educational achievement gap remain concerning red flags, emphasizing the need for holistic wrap-around-services to meet families where they are. Red flags also represent the need for a community-wide response to help families thrive at a time when nearly one quarter of school-aged children grow and develop in poverty.  

Our region has exponential opportunities to grow and prosper, and that can best be accomplished when we care for all neighbors on the pathway to prosperity. Jaimie Trussell shares, “CCO exists to answer two questions. When people ask, ‘I want to help others – where do I go?’ or ‘I need help – where do I go?’ the answer is the same. You go to the Council of Churches.”

If you have the heart to share, support, or serve through CCO, we have an outreach to channel your passion. We are currently seeking community partners and servant-leaders to support holiday needs and the Levell Up campaign. Together, we can build a community for everyone, and that is a timeless mission with unlimited ROI.  

You are invited to learn more! Visit or email Philip Herzog (Network Member) at