about us

Down syndrome (DS) also known as Trisomy 21, occurs when an individual has a 3rdcopy of chromosome 21.  One in every 700 babies in the U.S. is born with DS, making it the most common chromosomal condition.  In 1983, the average life expectancy of a person with Down syndrome was a mere 25 years old.  Today, it is 60.


Started by a group of mothers in 2006, DSGO is an organization made up of a committed group of parents, professionals and other interested parties dedicated to creating an extensive network of support for individuals with Down syndrome and those who love and serve them in Southwest Missouri.  Our Board of Directors has six committed family members and area business leaders shaping the future.  We have one employee, an Executive Director.

It is our goal to become the leading resource of Down syndrome information for new and expectant parents, students, healthcare professionals, educators and all Southwest Missouri citizens.  We also are striving to bring awareness to early intervention services, promote inclusive education, highlight appropriate medical services, encourage quality employment opportunities, and advocate for community awareness and acceptance.

Down Syndrome Group of the Ozarks exists to bring life and wellness to families who are advocating towards a community of inclusion for individuals with Down syndrome. 


    Scott joined the DSGO family in August of 2019.  He is passionate about developing resources, programs and events that positively impact people; leading them to live life to the fullest.  Scott brings 20 years of experience in the creative consulting industry, and over a decade of non-profit executive leadership experience.

board of directors

  • kevin w. baker > President

    Kevin and his wife Leisha are the owners of Club Z! In-Home Tutoring.  Kevin has served on the DSGO board for several years.  Kevin has also served as Vice Chairman of the Board at the Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce and is a Charter Member of the Christian County Lions Club.  Kevin enjoys spending time outdoors with his chocolate lab Bailey!

  • ken taylor > Vice President

    Ken Taylor is President of ADsmith Marketing & Advertising. His goal is to help DSGO in their efforts in creating community awareness, education and connecting with new DSGO families. He and his wife Kim live in Springfield. They have 4 beautiful children. Their youngest, Brenna, is in grade school and has Down syndrome. Ken has been involved with DSGO since the birth of their daughter Brenna in 2010.


  • jen welton > PAST president

    Jen is Owner of Boundless Creative and Immersed Marketing. She comes to DSGO with 25+ years of nonprofit experience. Jen was introduced to DSGO through her older brother, Trent, who has Down syndrome. Her goal as Past President of the Board is to research and develop the opportunity for medical treatment in Springfield for our families.

  • j.c. loveland

    J.C. graduated from Parkview High School and went on to obtain degrees from College of the Ozarks and William Woods University.  His background includes several years working in the Parks & Recreation field, followed by the banking industry where he is currently the Assistant Vice President Branch Manager for Encore Bank.  J.C.'s cousin had Neurofibromatosis and J.C. wants to use his experience from that relationship to give back to families with special needs.

  • GabRIELLE martin

    Gabe is the Executive Director for the Burrell Foundation (Burrell Behavioral Health), with previous employment at Hickory Hills Country Club, Southern Supply Companies, and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.  A Springfield native, Gabe is married to her high school sweetheart, Eric, and together they have two daughters, Alivia and Colette. Interacting with the Down syndrome community through the Special Olympics left a lasting impression on her heart, and she is proud to serve on the DSGO board.


    James serves as Assistant Vice President-Operations for Springfield First Community Bank.  James has been in banking for 21 years and held a variety of branch supervisory and customer contact positions.  He and his wife Stephanie have an adopted son Toby, with Down syndrome. 

  • mary blair

  • Amy bullard