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Your turn: Corey Mehaffy

Corey Mehaffy
Posted: May. 4, 2019 12:01 am Updated: May. 5, 2019 1:16 am

When I was a kid, I wanted to be ... a preacher when I grew up. Our faith was the primary focus for our family growing up, and I was fortunate enough to have a number of great role models in ministry who poured into my life.

What would you rather be doing right now? I would love to be on a bike ride across the country. One of the benefits of cycling is that it allows me to explore different areas of the country and meet new people.

Shhhhhh! Don't tell anyone that ... I am a Duke basketball fan and a Notre Dame football fan.

Other than your wedding day and/or the birth of your children, what was your proudest moment? I don't think I can pinpoint just one event. My greatest joy is watching our son in his life journey. Watching him accomplish his goals in sports, education and now with his employment makes me proud.

It really stinks when ... I hear people refer to our communities in the deficit narrative. In other words, when people define our communities by what they are not. I prefer to define our communities by what they are and celebrate the unique things we have. That one change in mindset is the difference between a community that is vibrant and growing and a community that is stagnant.

What word in the dictionary would your face be next to? Principled.

I always laugh when ... I see people bashing their community leaders on social media. I remember watching a documentary years ago with Laura Bush. One thing that stuck with me was a comment she made about how difficult it was to hear people maligning her husband's decisions when she knew that these people were not privy to classified information that was a driver for these decisions. She added that she slept with the man and didn't have access to this information. Since that time, I have always tried to remember that the general public is not always privy to the entire set of facts that leaders are evaluating when making decisions. As Daniel Patrick Moynihan said, "everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts."

Invite any three people, living or dead, to dinner. Who are they? Coach K, coach Lou Holtz and coach Tony Dungy. All three have interesting life journeys, paths to success and tremendous stories about overcoming adversity. All three have excellent books with great advice for management and life in general.

At the end of a really long day at work, I like to ... get on my bike and ride. Cycling is a great stress reliever.

People who knew me in high school thought I was ... fun to be around.

My most unforgettable brush with greatness was ... I remember having dinner in West Des Moines, Iowa, one evening following a round of the U.S. Senior Open. We were seated at a table next to Raymond Floyd and his wife. My son was very young at the time, and Mrs. Floyd was interacting with him. We had an enjoyable conversation.

I would drop all my plans tonight if I had the chance to ... go to Busch Stadium and watch the Cardinals beat the Cubs.

If someone gave me a million dollars, there is STILL no way I would ... move to a colder climate.

America should be more concerned about ... the spiritual well-being of our country. I believe that all of the issues we face as a nation can be overcome by people who count Christ as the most important relationship in their lives.

I'm OK if there's ever a national shortage of ... clothes. I hate to admit this, but I have way too many clothes.

When I'm on the internet, I always go to ... Facebook and Twitter. I enjoy catching up with my friends and family and seeing what they are up to.

What is the most useful piece of advice you have ever received? Two: First was from a business consultant when I was having trouble pushing a deal across the finish line. He reminded me that sometimes in our lives God calls us to run, other times He calls us to walk and in some cases He calls us to be still and listen. Lesson -- all good things happen in God's time.

Second, a former employer reminded me on the plane coming home from a missed opportunity that even Hall of Fame running backs get hit in the backfield on occasion. Lesson -- pick yourself up, dust yourself off and advance the ball one yard at a time.

When I'm cruising down the road, I'm likely listening to ... SSRq80s hair metal as loud as the stereo will go. I am a #HairNation fan!

I always get sentimental when ... I talk about my father. We lost my father in 2001, and I miss him every day. He was the single greatest influence in my life, and I am so grateful to have had him as my father. He taught me to love Jesus, value a dollar, work hard, do things right the first time for the right reasons and so much more. I am who I am today due in large part to his loving example.

The older I get, the more I realize ... the older I am. It frustrates me that I just can't do some of the things I once could.

If I had one "do-over," I would ... try to find a way to work with my father. I see many of my friends working alongside their family members in business, and I wish I would have pursued that opportunity.

My favorite item of clothing is ... Most of my favorite clothing items have mysteriously disappeared. Apparently, they were in poor condition and should not be worn in public.

If I've learned anything at all ... Stuff just doesn't matter. I spent a lot of my life accumulating stuff only to find that it complicates things. My wife and I have decided that we need to have less stuff in our lives so we can focus on what really matters: helping others and spending time with our family and friends.

Corey Mehaffy, 48, is executive director of the Northeast Missouri Economic Development Council. He is responsible for all economic development efforts including business retention and expansion, business attraction and entrepreneurship for the city of Hannibal, Mo., and Marion and Ralls counties. Mehaffy is an avid cyclist and enjoys high school and college sports. He and his wife, Priscilla, have been married for 29 years and have a son, Jordan, who lives in Moberly. Mehaffy grew up in Quincy and is a 1988 graduate of Quincy High School.