Bright Futures Connections for Success
135 East 3rd Street
Carthage MO 64836
Web and Phone Contact
Telephone (417) 553-9665
Fax 417- 553-9668
Mission Statement

Together…committing all that we are to enrich the life of a child. Helping communities connect by developing relationships, supporting education, removing barriers and channeling resources so they can rally together to meet the needs of their children and empower them to travel their pathway to success. By living out our Mission, we create a brighter future for our children in communities worldwide.

CEO/Executive Director Ms. Kim Vann
Board Chair Ms. Carrie E Caruthers
Board Chair Company Affiliation American Century Investments
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 2011
Volunteer Opportunities
Ways to donate, support, or volunteer
  • Donations can be made online at
  • Donations can also be made by mailing a check to the following address:
            Bright Futures USA
            135 East 3rd Street
            Carthage, MO 64836
Financial Summary
Revenue Expense Area Graph

Comparing revenue to expenses shows how the organizations finances fluctuate over time.

Source: IRS Form 990

Net Gain/Loss:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.
Mission Statement

Together…committing all that we are to enrich the life of a child. Helping communities connect by developing relationships, supporting education, removing barriers and channeling resources so they can rally together to meet the needs of their children and empower them to travel their pathway to success. By living out our Mission, we create a brighter future for our children in communities worldwide.

Background Statement The idea for Bright Futures began in Joplin, MO in 2010 when Dr. CJ Huff, then Superintendent of Joplin Schools, was tasked with increasing graduation rates. Dr. Huff recognized that graduation rates were a community issue, not just a school issue, and communities readily had the resources necessary to help students and schools succeed. Bright Futures began as a way to engage schools and communities in a way that had never been possible --- in a way that allowed existing community resources to rapidly be utilized to meet student needs. Bright Futures was a quick success in Joplin, and several area communities became interested in taking Bright Futures into their communities. As a result of this demand, the non-profit organization Bright Futures USA was incorporated in 2011. Bright Futures USA was started to share the framework with other communities and provide support as these communities and Bright Futures initiatives continued to grow. Since this time, Bright Futures has been taken to 57 communities throughout Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Virginia, North Carolina, Alaska, and Iowa.
Impact Statement
Accomplishments from Past Year:
  1. Held national conference serving over 270 communities.
  2. Total of 57 affiliate communities in 8 states.
  3. Served over 275,000 children.
Goals for Current Year: 
  1. Develop service learning curriculum to share with affiliate communities.
  2. Continue to secure appropriate national partnerships.
  3. Continue working on expansion of statewide affiliation in Missouri, Arkansas, Kansas, and Oklahoma.
  4. Revise and implement strategic fundraising plan.
Needs Statement
  1. Funding for daily organizational operations.
  2. Funding for a full-time development director and conference coordinator.
  3. Funding for development of data collection tools that all affiliate communities can utilize to effectively measure and evaluate programming. 
  4. Updated technology for staff members and volunteers.
Service Categories
Elementary & Secondary Schools
Areas of Service
CEO/Executive Director/Board Chair Statement
From Kim Vann, Executive Director of Bright Futures USA: 
  • In less than five years, Bright Futures USA has made impressive strides. We have a presence in 57 communities in 8 different states. Bright Futures serves nearly 275,000 students throughout these 57 communities. Bright Futures Joplin, the first Bright Futures affiliate community, has received national recognition and two national awards. Since the implementation of Bright Futures in 2010, Joplin Schools graduation rate rose 12.4% from 75.1% in 2009 to 87.5% in 2014.
  • Currently, the largest challenge facing Bright Futures USA is our financial situation. We have been growing rapidly, and it has been hard to keep pace financially. The Bright Futures USA Board of Directors and I are currently taking measures to bring in additional income through the adaptation of our organizational fundraising plan. Efforts include increased opportunities for funding through fundraising events and activities, securing national sponsorships, and the expansion of Bright Futures affiliate communities.
  • Our board of directors continues to grow and diversify. We’ve recently added several strong leaders to this group who are passionate about strategy, building strong communities, and financial sustainability. These individuals as well as the number of Bright Futures community members who believe in what we do are truly the reason we will continue to thrive and grow.
  • The greatest success we've seen in my opinion is that the framework we've shared with nearly 60 communities at this point continues to work and serve children through the utilization of resources that already exist in each of these communities. Resources might look like a pair of steel toed work boots setting in a garage, not being used. Through utilization of social media and other forms of technology, community members are notified when a child has a need. In this particular case, a teenage boy needed size 13, steel toed work boots so that he could participate in a welding program at his local vocational-technical school. A lady read about the need and realized she had a pair setting in her garage that had been purchased for her husband several years earlier but had never been used. She delivered the boots to a counselor at the local high school and the student had the boots before day's end. No additional moneys had to be spent and a child was able to obtain training that would allow him to be career ready upon graduation from high school. Not only was he career ready, but he was prepared to work in an industry that would support himself and his future family. To think that the only thing standing in his way was the inability to purchase the needed supplies, in this case, steel toed boots. 
Description Bright Futures USA is a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing communities together to focus on the success of children. This grassroots movement uses the Bright Futures framework to engage businesses, human service agencies, faith-based organizations, and parent groups within communities to meet the needs of children so every child can be successful, now and in the future. While each Bright Futures community focuses on the needs of their children and schools individually, Bright Futures USA works to support communities so that local efforts toward helping children are possible.
Category Education, General/Other Elementary & Secondary Education
Population Served Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)
Short-Term Success Every day, we hear more and more stories of success from our affiliate communities. From community members who gain a new perspective on life by helping meet a need to children who wear a pair of new shoes for the first time, Bright Futures continues to be successful. Time and time again, we have seen communities transformed by taking on the Bright Futures initiative. Communities already have the resources they need in order to be successful, but Bright Futures continues to be successful in helping communities reach their potential to truly be better communities.
Long-Term Success Ultimately, the goal of Bright Futures USA is to help as many communities as possible nationwide. Bright Futures was founded on the idea that when communities invest their time, talent, and treasure in their schools, students are more likely to stay in school through graduation, have a high degree of self-worth and confidence, and set and reach goals for the future. We want to reach as many communities as possible so that these communities, in turn, can help as many children as possible. This success will be measured not only by increased graduation rates for Bright Futures schools but also by increased community attitude and an increasingly productive and efficient workforce and community atmosphere in the long-term.
Program Success Monitored By In addition to the continued review of graduation rates, success of Bright Futures is measured through community surveys and ambassador visits by Bright Futures representatives in schools. Additionally, each community has its own Facebook page, on which information regarding community support for an individual program is readily accessible. Bright Futures USA also collects data each semester that evaluates needs met, partnerships developed, and volunteer involvement.
Examples of Program Success
Bright Futures USA has a reach of over 230,000 students in 53 communities in 8 states. 
"A high school senior was considering dropping out of school because he was embarrassed that he only had one outfit. His mother contacted the school counselor and asked if there was anyway they could help. The counselor immediately called Bright Futures and clothes were quickly gathered for the young man." – Bright Futures Liberal
"Lincoln County, Missouri has a beautiful, amazing people doing wonderful things to enrich the lives of children and others. Bright Futures Lincoln County has craeted an opportunity to engage every single person in our community to come together and stand beside our families as a cohesive team. The children of Lincoln County will grow up knowing that their community cares for them and that everyone has given their time, talent, or treasure along the way to enrich their lives. Lincoln County is a wonderful place to call home and the future of our children is even brighter." – Bright Futures Lincoln County
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Ms. Kim Vann
Term Start Jan 2011

Prior to accepting this position, Kim worked for Joplin Schools, serving as the Executive Director of Communication and Community Development where she was responsible for overseeing district communication, district development efforts, community engagement efforts, and the Bright Futures Joplin program. Prior to that she worked as the Business Development Director for the Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce where she was responsible for advocating for small business and acted as the liaison between the Chamber’s small business Members and Chamber leadership. Kim was responsible for many programs and services that served the Chamber Membership. Kim sat on the US Chamber of Commerce Small Business Council for four years and also served on the American Chamber of Commerce Small Business Advisory Council.

Kim received her IOM (Institute for Organizational Management) designation from the US Chamber of Commerce in 2009. Institute for Organization Management was designed to enhance individual performance, elevate professional standards, and recognize association, chamber of commerce, and other nonprofit professionals who demonstrate the knowledge essential to the practice of nonprofit management. Kim also holds a Bachelor's Degree in Business Management from Missouri Southern State University.

She is a past President of Soroptimist International of Joplin. Kim has been honored with many awards over the years including one of Joplin Tri-State Business Journal’s 2007 “10 Most Influential Women”, Joplin Business Journal’s 40 Under 40, and Joplin’s 15 People to Watch.

Paid Full-Time Staff 4
Volunteers 5
Retention Rate 75%
Staff Diversity (Ethnicity)
Caucasian 4
Staff Diversity (Gender)
Female 2
Male 2
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Plans & Policies
Organization Has a Fundraising Plan Yes
Organization Has a Strategic Plan Yes
Management Succession Plan Under Development
Organization Policy and Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistleblower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Together for Tomorrow AwardThe White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Corporation for National and Community Service2012
Magna AwardNational School Board Association2010
Board Chair
Board Chair Ms. Carrie Caruthers
Company Affiliation American Century Investments
Term July 2017 to June 2019
Board Members
Mr. Gary BurtonBurton-Liese, LLC
Mr. Bob BurtonNorth American Mission Board
Ms. Carrie E. CaruthersAmerican Century Investments
Mr. James DixonEl-Bethel Baptist Church
Ms. Nancy GoodRetired
Mr. Bo LeeWarten, Fisher, Lee & Brown
Mr. Rick NealPea Ridge School District
Mr. Steve PattersonSpring River Baptist Association
Mr. Mark QuinnSIBOSE
Dr. David SovineFrederick County Public Schools
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 1
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 9
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 8
Female 2
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 2
Board Meeting Attendance % 80%
Written Board Selection Criteria? Yes
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 90%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 4
Standing Committees
Board Governance
Communications / Promotion / Publicity / Public Relations
CEO Comments Our board members are busy professionals with demanding work schedules that require them to travel frequently. They also reside in various geographical locations that range from the Midwest to the eastern seaboard. This makes communication and board meetings challenging. Although technology has helped address this challenge, it still does not eliminate it. We continue to refine the tools used in board meetings so that regardless of geographic location, all board members can participate. Due to differing internet connection capabilities, some members are able to join us via video conference while others must use phone conference if they cannot attend in person. Great strides were made in this area over this past year but we realize that we need to continue to focus on bridging the "miles gap".  Larger corporations are able to afford to put the technology pieces in place to make teleconferencing and videoconferencing more seamless. As a small nonprofit organization, that is more of a challenge. We continue to look for partners that can help us work through this challenge.
Fiscal Year Start July 01, 2018
Fiscal Year End June 30, 2019
Projected Revenue $269,044
Projected Expenses $260,500
Spending Policy Income Only
Foundation Comments
  • FYE 6/30/2017, 2016, 2015: Financial data reported using IRS Form 990.
  • Foundation/corporate revenue line item may include contributions from individuals.
Detailed Financials
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201720162015
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$8,200$16,923$188,577
Individual Contributions------
Investment Income, Net of Losses$0$0$0
Membership Dues--$0$0
Special Events$0($2,364)$8,798
Revenue In-Kind--$0$0
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201720162015
Program Expense$313,795$209,203$133,960
Administration Expense$146,483$122,840$63,834
Fundraising Expense$11,096$9,434$7,935
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.890.661.49
Program Expense/Total Expenses67%61%65%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue------
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201720162015
Total Assets$40,980$92,560$208,495
Current Assets$40,247$91,340$206,461
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$0$0
Total Net Assets$40,980$92,560$208,495
Short-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201720162015
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities------
Long-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201720162015
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201720162015
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountAnonymous $15,000Anonymous $16,923Anonymous $145,500
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountAnonymous $15,000Anonymous $15,000Anonymous $43,077
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountAnonymous $11,500Anonymous $13,250Anonymous $13,000
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years No
Other Documents
Organization Name Bright Futures Connections for Success
Address 135 East 3rd Street
Carthage, MO 64836
Primary Phone (417) 553-9665
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Kim Vann
Board Chair Ms. Carrie E Caruthers
Board Chair Company Affiliation American Century Investments
Year of Incorporation 2011