Missouri Gov. Mike Parson hosted a Hawthorn Foundation gathering of local business leaders Oct. 21 at Southeast’s River Campus. This was the governor’s fifth visit to the Southeast campus since taking office in June 2018. The Hawthorn Foundation is a non-partisan organization of Missouri-based businesses and community leaders dedicated to strengthening and developing the economy of the state of Missouri. At Monday’s gathering, Parson underscored the importance of workforce development and infrastructure, and the expansion of broadband as driving forces in the Missouri economy. He said attracting business and industry to Missouri is crucial, highlighting $3 billion in investments in the state in 2018 by several major companies. Parson also discussed the importance of increasing the number of Missourians with college degrees to boost the skills of the state’s workforce.