Ribbon cutting at Edward Jones in Louisiana

Helping Kayla Caldwell, center, with the ribbon cutting were, left to right, Bria Ibury, Karla Thorpe, Donnie Tepen, (holding Kayla’s daughter, Austen), Kayla, Darlene Tepen, (holding Kayla’s son, Charlie), Kevin Brown and Jamie Fisher. The new office is at 2604 Georgia Street, Louisiana, Mo. Donnie and Darlene are Kayla’s parents. Karla and Kevin are with the Edward Jones branch office in Bowling Green. Photo by Stan Schwartz

LOUISIANA—Kayla Caldwell recently opened a branch office of Edward Jones, a financial advising company. She held a ribbon cutting ceremony Friday to celebrate the new space on Georgia Street.

Before the ceremony began, Jamie Fisher, the Edward Jones regional leader from Quincy, Ill., for northern Missouri presented Kayla with the Zeke McIntyre Pioneer Award for opening the branch office in Louisiana.

“This is really a cool deal,” Fisher said. “Real pioneers are few and far between,” he added. Fisher told about Zeke McIntyre, who opened the first Missouri branch office for Edward Jones in Mexico. Mo. Edward Jones is based out of St. Louis, but Zeke was the first one to branch out west for the company with an office in the field.

“Now we have almost 19,000 offices across the country,” Fisher said. “Kayla earned this award because she is starting out as a pioneer—basically starting an office from scratch in Louisiana.”

Fisher noted that not many people get the award because a lot of times people take over existing offices.

“I think it’s pretty cool that our first branch office was in Mexico, not far away,” Kayla said.

On hand to help her celebrate the new office were members of the Edward Jones office from Bowling Green, Mo., Kevin Brown and Karla Thorpe; her parents, Donnie and Darlene Tepen; Bria Ibury from the Louisiana Chamber of Commerce; and her two children, daughter, Austen, and son, Charlie.

“We’ve always wanted to put an office in Louisiana,” Fisher said. “So, this is a really important milestone for us. We think Kayla is going to do a great job. It’s like bringing Wall Street to Main Street of Louisiana, Mo.”

Edward Jones is an investment company that helps people prepare for retirement, save for education and invest for the future.

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