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Supporter Spotlight: Meet Barrett Evans

Volunteer Barrett Evans is passionate about how YE equips students for professional success.
“No matter what these students choose to do, from working for a Fortune 500 company to a small business and anything in between, the entrepreneurial skills will carry them so far,” he says. Meet Barrett Evans.

His professional background: Barrett Evans owns Kansas City Business Solutions, an outsourced CFO solutions company. “We serve a wide range of clients, anywhere from law firms to dental practices, realtors, franchise owners, even home organizers. I’ve found there’s a strong need for that back office financial piece,” he says.

His YE involvement: One of Barrett’s colleagues at a previous employer was part of the YE Advancement Council, and invited Barett to join five years ago. “We’re a group of bona fide cheerleaders for the organization!” he smiles. Barrett and his fellow Council members are charged with helping expand awareness and support for YE in the Kansas City area. He was also an emcee at last year’s Business for Breakfast in Kansas City.

Serving as a Classroom Volunteer: His Youth Entrepreneurs involvement also extends into the classroom — he volunteers at William Chrisman High School in Independence, MO. “As a Classroom Volunteer, it is our job to meet with a small group of students for four-six months, helping guide them and facilitate their ideas so they can put them on paper, write their business plan and then present to a group of judges. It’s amazing the ideas they come up with! Our goal is to try to give them the best guidance we can.”

Why he volunteers with YE: Barrett’s Youth Entrepreneurs involvement stems from his own high school business experiences through DECA, an organization that prepares students for careers in business. “I was very involved in DECA in my high school, and that was a big stepping stone to where I am today,” he reflects. “I gained the business acumen that I utilize every day in my own company. The education piece is huge. I believe in what this organization is doing, and I’ve come to really believe in the program and all that the students get out of it.”

His most memorable Youth Entrepreneurs mindset-shift moment: “I always see the most mindset-shift moments during Market Day,” he says. “Lots of business concepts are theoretical, but on Market Day, they get to experience it first hand. Market Day makes all those theoretical concepts real and tangible. It’s one of the most impactful moments for these students.”

YE equips students to overcome obstacles. A great obstacle Barrett has overcome: Barrett points to his own entrepreneurial journey. “I was with a medium-sized firm for seven years and my position was eliminated. Just a handful of firms did what we did in Kansas City, so I had to reinvent myself and I started my own business. It’s been a series of hurdles, but my company is successful today.”

What drives his YE passion: “It’s giving back to an organization that is really providing value to the youth in this country,” Barrett says. “It’s an organization that has taken kids under their wing and showing them the way towards entrepreneurship. Someday, they’ll be able to employ other individuals who can give back to their communities. It’s full circle.”

One YE lesson he hopes YE students will remember: “You’ve got to continue to iterate,” Barrett says. “Part of my role is helping students bring ideas into something manageable. I had one student who wanted to start a hydrogen car company! So we worked on iteration to scale that down. Your first idea will change a million times, and you have to be remember that iteration will happen over and over again over the lifetime of the business.”

Why he encourages others to volunteer with Youth Entrepreneurs: “The time commitment is minimal, but the payback is far beyond what you would expect. Having that direct impact on students is tremendous.”