THE FORTUNATE ONE
Scott McDonald considers himself to be a fortunate man. He lives and works in Nixa, Missouri, the community where he grew up. He has a job he enjoys, a great family, and copious opportunities to “give back” to the community that has given so much to him.
Scott graduated from (then) Southwest Missouri State University in 1995 with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance. Scott’s love of finance began with his part-time job as a bank teller during his college years. “Most people are very protective of their money and, as a banker, they are putting their trust in you to take care of it and make wise decisions in investing their wealth,” says McDonald. McDonald liked the trust people put in him and his bank and chose a major in Finance to pursue a career in banking. When asked if a particular professor had an impact on him, he quickly responds, “Dr. James Scott. He has such a common-sense approach to teaching.”
Scott has worked in banking almost continuously since his graduation, with the exception of a three-year period where he and his wife owned a small manufacturing business. McDonald believes that “this time of owning a small business has made me a better banker, because I am now able to better relate to business owners and the challenges (and successes) that can be obtained as a business owner.”
Always seeking to improve his knowledge and skills, Scott pursued his MBA through Webster University’s Springfield campus. When asked for his advice to current FGB students, McDonald advises that they wait until they have a few years’ experience before seeking an MBA. “For me, waiting until later in my career made me better appreciate and understand the benefits of an advanced degree.” Scott also advises students to “enjoy the season you are in,” as students often focus on future events like career and graduation, missing out on all of the great things happening around them.
McDonald is currently the Community President for Empire Bank in Nixa. Scott has a deep love of Nixa. “I grew up in Nixa, graduating from Nixa High School in 1990. When I graduated from Nixa schools, the city population was 4,706 with just a few banks. Today, Nixa has over 15,000 people and more than 10 banking locations. Empire Bank is committed to the communities they serve, and this is prevalent in Nixa. In addition to financially supporting those communities, many employees from Empire Bank volunteer their time in service to our community. It still amazes me to think I am fortunate enough to live, work and give back to the same community in which I grew up.”
Scott’s life does not just revolve around banking. He says his most important role is as husband and father. He and his wife Angie have been married for 17 years and have two daughters, Beth (age 14) and Demi (age 10). McDonald is also heavily involved in his community. He is the President of the Nixa School Board, President of the Ozarks Regional Community Development Organization, and a board member of the American Diabetes Association and the Nixa Education Foundation. When his busy schedule allows, he likes to golf and attend sporting events with his wife.