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MoveMakers & NewsMakers for Aug. 30, 2022


See who is making news and moving where in the weekly Missouri Bar update "MoveMakers & NewsMakers."

St. Louis | Joplin

St. Louis

Constance Harper has been promoted to Vice President of Policy, Advocacy, and Strategic Initiatives at Deaconess Foundation. She was formerly Director of Advocacy and Freedom Schools, with more than five years at the organization. 

Bringing a breadth of experience and learning into her new role, Harper has the overall strategic and operational responsibility to articulate policy priorities developed in partnership with impacted communities and formulate strategies to advance those priorities. These priorities include local, state, and federal legislative and administrative advocacy, and coalition building to advance the Foundation’s mission.

She will coordinate the execution of strategic initiatives aimed at shaping and transforming oppressive systems that impact the well-being of children and their community of caregivers. She will accomplish this task by leveraging the Foundation’s financial resources, relationships, and other assets for the causes championed by the communities in Eastern Missouri and Southern Illinois.

Harper will continue to provide leadership to the Foundation’s cross-cutting functions which include overall strategy, innovation, communications, legal, and leadership development while playing a key role in embedding equity, inclusion, and anti-racism as a process and an outcome throughout the organization.

Prior to joining Deaconess Foundation, Harper was the Director of Legislative Outreach at the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). Before her tenure at DESE, Harper served as a Legislative Analyst in the office of former Missouri State Representative Kimberly Gardner, practiced law, and held several public relations and public affairs positions across the country.

Harper is a member of The Missouri Bar and the State Bar of California. She earned her Juris Doctor from California Western School of Law after earning a bachelor’s degree in public relations from Florida A&M University. She is a native of St. Louis.


Johnson, Vorhees & Martucci (JVM) celebrated 20 years of distinguished service to its clients and the Joplin community by donating $20,000 to four area non-profit organizations at a special event July 29. The donation underscores the firm’s broad commitment to serving people in need by seeking justice for those unfairly harmed and providing significant levels of financial and staff volunteer support to 17 community service organizations. 

Guests at the 20th anniversary celebration determined that the $20,000 donation be divided among four nonprofit organizations as follows:

  • $10,000 to Building Bridges 
  • $5,000 to Lafayette House 
  • $2,500 to The Alliance of Southwest Missouri 
  • $2,500 to The Children’s Center 

“For 20 years we’ve been standing up for people who need an advocate,” said Roger Johnson, partner at JVM. “Whether we’re working for a client, or serving the community, the greatest honor we have is creating impact for those who need it.” 

One example of JVM’s direct community service is the firm’s annual giveaway of cold weather sweatshirts and beanies to elementary school kids. Started ten years ago, more than 12,000 sweatshirts and beanies have been donated by JVM directly to area students. 

“The need continues, and because we know that everyone deserves a fair shot at success, we have chosen to extend our donation program to reach more kids each year,” Johnson added. “Our goal is to inspire all students to achieve their full potential and to feel comfortable being themselves at school. This is our way of saying thank you to a community that has given us so much.” 

Johnson, Vorhees & Martucci is widely regarded as one of the leading personal injury law firms in the four-state region of Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. With 140+ years of combined experience and offices in Joplin and Springfield, the firm’s award-winning attorneys are individually committed to the mission of providing high-powered advocacy and compassionate counsel to our clients. 


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