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Jeff D. Mitchell, 38

Associate General Counsel, Missouri State University

Jeff D. MitchellLocation: Springfield

Practice Area(s): Public higher education, contract, personal Injury

Law School: University of Missouri-Kansas City

Jeff Mitchell says he knows that the hardest words in life are “I don’t know.” That’s why he believes in the power of humility.

According to his nominator, the Colorado native is indispensable at Missouri State University, where he is responsible for providing legal advice and services in the division of student affairs. He also helped to establish a behavioral intervention team to help university students in crisis.

A Boy Scout troop leader and youth sports coach, he is also an active volunteer for the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Lunch Buddy Program.

“While this profession certainly has its pitfalls, I see no other profession that could have allowed me to know such a wide variety of industries, work with such dedicated professionals and be a part of so many meaningful endeavors,” he said.

What is something that would surprise people about you?

I’ve been a vegetarian for almost eight years. If I could choose to live in any fictional universe, I would choose Star Trek over Star Wars. Finally, for as long as I can remember, I have eaten the whole apple (I prefer Fujis) — core, stem and seeds.

What is the best career advice you have received?

I discovered (Terre Haute, Indiana attorney) Max Ehrmann’s prose poem “Desiderata” early in my legal career, and its wisdom and guidance have been invaluable.

What is your biggest accomplishment this year?

I have had the opportunity to work on the expansion of our campus’ footprint through the acquisition of new campus property and guide a new program focused on providing the college experience to students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

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