By Kyle Siegel
Since December of 2003, Meg Liston has been the director of the Sedalia Downtown Development Inc. (SDDI) and she has spent many tireless hours working to make historic downtown Sedalia a bright spot in the community.
Liston was born in Kansas City, and when she was in fifth grade her family moved to Sedalia.
While in elementary, Meg attended school at St. Patrick’s before attending Sacred Heart High School, where she graduated.
After high school Liston attended Central Missouri State University (now UCM), where she received a bachelor’s degree in science.
“I majored in biology and minored in chemistry. I was studying pre-veterinarian medicine,” Liston said.
Liston opted not to pursue becoming a veterinarian after college.
“I got married and I decided it would be really tough driving back and forth to the University of Missouri. I kind of got a better understanding for the job,” she said.
While still in high school, Liston began working at the now defunct Fox Theater in downtown Sedalia.
“My first job was really when I was still in high school. I started working in the ticket office of the Fox Theater. It was a nice theater,” she said.
Meg’s interest in animal science led her to working part-time at the Flat Creek Veterinarian office while still in school.
Meg’s interest in animals turned into a job itself when she became the director of the Humane Society Animal Shelter.
“I was the director for the Humane Society Animal Shelter. That was during the time the Humane Society took over the animal shelter,” Meg said.
In 1977, Meg married Robert Liston. Meg and Robert had two sons together and Meg gained two step-daughters. Meg and Robert have five grandchildren, and they all live in the St. Louis area.
Meg worked in her husband’s law office as a paralegal for 20 years and after he was elected to the position of Circuit Court Judge, she decided to pursue another career.
In December of 2003, Meg was hired as the director of the SDDI and she hasn’t looked back since.
“It was a good transition from legal to this,” Meg said of her job with the SDDI.
Meg was asked if there were any surprises when she took the job with SDDI.
“It wasn’t a surprise. The hardest part of that first year was the depot. We already had construction bidding when I took over,” she said.
Meg was asked if she stills enjoys her job.
“Yeah, a lot. It involves a lot of different things and areas of work. It keeps me interested. We have a good board of directors,” Liston said.
The SDDI is a non-profit corporation that oversees and promotes revitalization of the historic downtown district in Sedalia.
Over the years, Meg has served on several boards in various capacities. Liston was one of the founders of the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity.
Meg currently serves as a member on the Trail’s End committee.
Liston was asked what kind of activities she enjoys during her down time.
“Right now we are gardening. We have a very large garden. I love fly fishing. That is my passion. It is a lot of fun, and that is our break away from everything. We go a few days a year.
“This past year, and last year, we went to spring training. We like to watch the Springfield Cardinals. Baseball is another one of our passions,” Meg said with a smile.