Story by Megan Whitehead | Jan 01, 2018
Photography by Keith Borgmeyer

Co-owner and Practice Administrator, Riverbend Dentistry

How does a transplant make a community their home? If you ask Kim Slaughter, the answer is by becoming involved in the community. That’s exactly what she did when she moved to Jefferson City to open Riverbend Dentistry with her husband, Dr. Tyler Slaughter.

Growing up in suburban Chicago, Slaughter and her sisters were recipients of the aid she tries to pay back every day. “We were the free- and reduced-lunch kids my whole life,” she says. “We got Christmas presents from the local elementary school. I heard once that people who are in some sort of underprivileged position are the ones who have the biggest hearts. You know what it’s like, that it could be you again. Having grown up in a less-than-well-provided-for situation, I’m thankful for the positive role models I had and the help we received, so a lot of my volunteering and grant writing throughout the years has been focused on at-risk youth development and programs.”

With a master’s degree in nonprofit management, Slaughter uses her past experiences, skills, and position as small business owner to her advantage and the advantage of the community. “I love being a connector,” says Slaughter, “especially from the nonprofit community to the business community.

“I’m very passionate about being a small business owner in a place like Jefferson City. I always thought, before meeting Tyler, that I would go back home to Chicago. I am so thankful to be in a place that is a big small town where it’s easier to make a difference and have an impact.”

Slaughter is a huge advocate of cross-promoting local businesses. She has a mantra about dentistry, though it could be adapted for most industries, that “there’s enough teeth in Jefferson City for everyone.” She works hard to be a creative cheerleader for other small businesses through unique collaborations and an advocate for working closely with nonprofit organizations. “There are so many gems in Jeff City, and sharing the word about those places is great,” Slaughter says.

Recently, Slaughter focused much of her volunteer efforts on the East End development. “I’m really proud of the Lafayette and Capitol Avenue enhancements,” she says. “We live and work East End.”

Her passion for volunteering, and for Jefferson City, is obvious to everyone who has the chance to talk with her. “Kim’s ability to connect to people and make them feel important is one of the ways she has become a person to watch,” says Merideth Johnson. “If you ever go to an event with Kim, she will make about 15 new friends and make sure you get to know them as well. She will also go to great lengths to support local business and promote Jefferson City as a whole. She is truly one to watch.”

What is your guilty pleasure?

Anthropologie, true crime podcasts, thrifting, and amazing lattes and americanos. 

Community Involvement:

Young Professionals, board of directors
2018 Chamber of Commerce Ambassador
Member, volunteer, ROI sub-committee, Jefferson City Chamber of Commerce
Chair, St. Peter Interparish School Big Bucks Gala 
Coordinator, Jefferson City Dental Society
Member, Capital City Connections

Meet the other recipients >>

COMO 2 Tuscany website ad. Learn about this exciting trip to Tuscany by clicking this ad.