Since November 2012, Mary Beth has led this nonprofit organization, which works to enhance the region’s quality of life by producing world-class community celebrations. Wichita Festivals organizes Riverfest, Kansas’ largest and longest-running community festival; and Autumn & Art at Bradley Fair, a three-day fine art show and sale held in Northeast Wichita. Riverfest, which began as the city’s Centennial celebration in the early 1970s, attracts more than 350,000 attendees and consistently ranks among the world’s leading outdoor events.
For 15 years prior to joining Wichita Festivals, she held a variety of leadership roles at Koch Industries, Inc., including serving as Director of Public & International Affairs and Vice President of the Public Affairs Division. For six years before that, she was an officer in the U.S. Air Force, leading public affairs teams at McConnell Air Force Base here in Kansas and bases in Saudi Arabia and New York state.
She is a long-time volunteer leader for organizations including the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce, GoWichita Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the University of Notre Dame. In 2013, she was named the Greater Wichita YMCA volunteer of the year and one of the community’s leading “Newsmakers” by the Wichita Business Journal.
Listen to the full interview below.