As a student, Dan Cogswell, ’07, recognized that he was naturally gifted at planning projects and building teams. His talents found a home in the department of technology and construction management where he learned how to guide the development of large-scale projects. Now, the MSU alumnus is applying those same skills to the university’s Alumni Association Board of Directors as the 2016-2017 board chair.
“What’s interesting is that even while I was still a student, what I wanted for myself and other students was easier access to the larger Missouri State network,” Cogswell said.
Helping students connect with alumni has been one of Cogswell’s goals since his graduation. For several years, he has volunteered in the alumni association’s annual speed networking event, which gives students the opportunity to practice interview and professional conversation skills with alumni.
“I’m proud to be a Bear because I had a really great experience and it help set the foundation for all I’ve achieved today,” Cogswell said.
Building a career
Cogswell’s career has grown and evolved since his time at Missouri State University. Although he no longer works in the construction industry, he still utilizes the tools he gained during his time in the construction management program.
“My career journey is not at all how I would have planned it, but looking back it’s what I needed to get where I am today,” Cogswell said.
As the executive pastor at Restore Community Church in Kansas City, Missouri, Cogswell manages the church’s buildings and properties, finances, operations, human resources and more.
“As the right hand of the lead pastor, my goal is to take the church’s vision and mission and uncover processes and systems to help implement and maintain it,” Cogswell said.
Investing in Missouri State
“Strategic planning, leading teams and developing people are all part of what we’ve been doing with the alumni association,” Cogswell said. “As a volunteer, I’ve had the opportunity to do the things I love most at a place I love.“
As the 2015-2016 chair-elect, Cogswell led the strategic planning committee in developing the alumni association’s five-year strategic plan. Now, as the chair, he is tasked with guiding the plan’s implementation.
“The development of the strategic plan was a process that encompassed a lot of people’s time and effort,” Cogswell said. “As I step into the chair position, we have this document that will set the framework for moving forward. Now is the hard work of putting it into practice.”
True to his team-building nature, Cogswell is eager to hear other people’s feedback on Missouri State University and the alumni association.
“If you have any questions at all about the alumni association or Missouri State, I would love the opportunity to visit with you,” Cogswell said. “Consider this an open invitation to connect, whether you’re a current MSU student, high school student or you graduated 40 years ago, I’d love to have a conversation with you. You can reach me by email or on Twitter.”
Together with the alumni association board of directors and alumni council, Cogswell looks forward to helping the university build a brighter future.