Open Letter - Mask Wearing

Open Letter to Kansas City’s Business Owners and Leaders
On Mask-wearing Policies

July 1, 2020

Like all of you, we are working hard to find our way forward during the midst of a global pandemic and an economic recession. We are looking for safe and sustainable ways to conduct business, serve our customers and clients, and keep our employees employed.

As the science of the pandemic has evolved, we have learned that one of the most important things we can do as business leaders is to require mask-wearing. Several studies in the last month have shown the effectiveness of public mask-wearing in lowering the rates of transmission. Simultaneously, public health officials in Kansas City tell us that workplace transmission is one of the leading causes of community spread here in the Kansas City region.

Mask-wearing mandates have been implemented in some parts of the KC metro area, but not in all. For the good of our customers, our employees, our fellow residents, and our economy, we cannot allow masks to be politicized. We need to establish consistent, metro-wide, mask-wearing in public to protect all members of our communities.

In the interests of keeping our employees, our customers, and our region as safe as possible, we are calling on our fellow business leaders to put in place firm policies that:

  • Require employees to wear masks, indoors whenever 6' spacing cannot be accomplished, and outdoors whenever there is prolonged contact (10+ minutes) within 6'.
  • Require customers and clients to wear masks in our stores and facilities;
  • Provide high-quality masks to employees, clients, and customers who need them.

Business leaders have a unique role to play in shaping and modeling public behavior. By implementing firm mask requirements in our own businesses, we can each do our part to shape and encourage this new habit.

Wearing a mask is a simple, effective practice we can all adopt. It will make our workplace and our region safer, and it will help to prevent the chance of another economic lockdown. We invite you all to join us as signers and to encourage our fellow business leaders to take this step for public health.


Mike Adkins
President / CEO, Serenity Funeral Home

David Alvey
Mayor, Kansas City, KS

Deidre Anderson
CEO, United Inner City Services

Carlos Antequera
Managing Director, Novel Growth Partners

Adam Arredondo

Tahir Atwater
Director of Donor and Volunteer Engagement, Jackson County CASA

Katherine Hollar Barnard
CEO, Firesign | Enlightened Legal Marketing

Rita Baslock
President, Max Electric, Inc.

Brad Batz
President & CEO, Fike Corporation

Kimberly Beatty
Chancellor, Metropolitan Community College

Angela Bedell
Executive Director, Kansas City Medical Society

Allison Berey

Bill Berkley
President & CEO, Tension Envelope Corp.

Angie Blumel
President and CEO, Jackson County CASA

Ken Borum
Partner, Prosperity Planning, Inc.

Matt Bramlette
Owner/Operator, Mid Coast Modern /Soap Bar / Bear Soap Co.

Leanne Breiby
Director of Communications, Greater Kansas City Community Foundation

Pete Browne
President, Kissick Construction Company

Faruk Capan
CEO, Intouch Group

John G Carneu
President and CEO, Center for Practical Bioethics

Jeff Carson
Regional President, Enterprise Bank & Trust

Mark E. Eveans, CFA
President, Chief Investment Officer, Meritage Portfolio Management

Karin Chang
Associate Director, Urban Education Research Center

Kemet Coleman
Chief Operating Officer, MOSS Salon Studios

Lauren Conaway
Founder & CEO, InnovateHER KC

Matthew Condon
Founder & CEO, Bardavon Health Innovations

Rita M. Cortes
Executive Director, Menorah Heritage Foundation

Fred Coulson
Managing Partner, Five Elms Capital

Tim Cowden
President and CEO, Kansas City Area Development Council

Dominique Davison AIA
Managing Principal / CEO, DRAW / PlanIT Impact

Aaron Deacon
Managing Director, KC Digital Drive

Andy Deister
CEO, Russel Stover Chocolates

Julie Donelon
President/CEO, Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault

Karrie Duke
Director of Development, Center for the Developmentally Disabled

Linda Eanes
Chief Executive Officer, Agile Government Services, Inc

Ed Eilert
Chairman, Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

Mike English
Executive Director, Turn the Page KC

Mike Van Epp
Principal / Founder, Environ Capital

Mary Esselman
CEO, Operation Breakthrough

Tom Esselman
Executive Director, PCs for People Kansas City

Melinda L. Estes, MD
President and CEO, Saint Luke's Health System

Becky Fast
Commissioner, First District, Johnson County Government

John Fein
Managing Partner, Firebrand Ventures

Dan Fromm
President, Barkley

Colby Garrelts
Chef/Restaurateur, Flyover Hospitality - Rye/Bluestem

Alexandra Garrick
Executive Director, National Kidney Foundation Serving Kansas, Western Missouri and Oklahoma.

Cameron Garrison
Managing Partner, Lathrop GPM

Robert Garrison
Senior Associate, Terracon Consultants, Inc.

Vincent P. Gauthier
President, Urban Realty Interests, Inc.

Bill Gautreaux
Managing Partner, MLP Holdings LLC

Martha Gershun
CEO, MG Consulting

Chris Giuliani
CEO, Spring Venture Group

Joel Goldberg
Owner, Joel Goldberg Media

Don Goldman
Executive Director & CEO, Jewish Family Services of Greater Kansas City

J. Brett Gordon
Chairman/President, McCownGordon Construction

Tami Greenberg
CEO, Ronald McDonald House Charities Kansas City

Wendy Guillies
President & CEO, Kauffman Foundation

Nathaniel Hagedorn
CEO, Northpoint Development

Dr. Marc Hahn
President & CEO, Kansas City University

Tammy Ham
President and Executive Director, BioNovus Innovations, LLC

Janeé Hanzlick
Johnson County Commissioner, District 4, Johnson County Kansas

Stephen Hardy
CEO, mySidewalk

Keith Harrington
Managing Director, Novel Growth Partners

Earl Harrison Jr
President, Hg Consult, Inc.

Melissa Patterson Hazley
Director, Community Based Research & Evaluation, UMKC - Institute for Human Development

Michael Helmstetter
President & CEO, TechAccel, LLC

John Herron
CEO, Kansas City Public Library

Marc Hill
President, Civic Council of Greater Kansas City

Isaac Hodges
President, Messenger Coffee / Ibis Bakery

Michael Hoehn
President, Automatic Systems, Inc.

Karen Hogan
Vice President & General Manager, Turner Construction Company

Paul Holewinski
Chief Executive Officer, Academy Bank

Lauren Hoopes
Executive Director, Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Kansas City

Roya R. Hough
Attorney and Founder, Hough Law Firm/Divorce Differently KC

Darcy Howe
Founder, Managing Director, KCRise Fund

Christina Hoxie
Owner and Community Planner, Hoxie Collective LLC

Sam Huenergardt
CEO, AdventHealth Mid-America Region

Jarrod Huntley
VP Operations, Central Plains Cement Company LLC

Rebecca James
President, Abovo LLC

Erick Jessee
President, Posty Cards

Geoff Jolley
Executive Director, LISC Greater Kansas City

Brian Jones
Founder, Graphicmachine

Jeffrey J. Jones II
President & Chief Executive Officer, H&R Block

Mark Jorgenson
EVP - National Group President - Community Banking, U.S. Bank

Jeff King
CEO, Barkley

Dale Klose
Regional President, PNC Bank

Leigh Anne Taylor Knight
Executive Director & COO, The DeBruce Foundation

Ray Kowalik
CEO, Burns & McDonnell

Julius Lai
SVP, Digital and Loyalty Marketing, AMC Theatres

Gordon Lansford
CEO, JE Dunn Construction

Mark R. Larrabee
President & CEO- Greater Kansas City, Arvest Bank

Chuck & Jennifer Laue
Founders, Stray Dog Capital

Jacob Lindmark
Owner, Ticket Solutions

Andre Logan
Senior Vice President, Portals Hardware

Mark Logan
CEO, idealect

Gregg Lombardi
Executive Director, Neighborhood Legal Support of Kansas City

Casey Masters
CEO, Companion Protect

Chase McAnulty
Founder / CEO, Charlie Hustle, LLC.

Martha McCabe
Executive Director, KC STEM Alliance

Kathryn J McDaniel

Stevr McDowell

Kevin McGinnis
CEO, Keystone Community Corporation

John Mikos
President and CEO, YMCA of Greater Kansas City

Eric Morgenstern
CEO, Morningstar Communications

Leo Morton
President & COO, DeBruce Companies

Dr. Kevin Mowry
President, Foundation Periodontics, PA

Patrick A. Murphy
President, RESULTS Technology

Sarah Murphy
Manager of Brand Experience and Communications, Ability KC

Taimoor Nana

Kathy Nelson
President/CEO, Greater Kansas City Sports Commission & Foundation

Ronald W Nelson
President, Ronald W. Nelson, P.A. Law Office

Rick Norden
President and CEO, Fairbanks Scales

Leigh Nottberg
Chair, Nottberg Family Foundation

Tyler Nottberg
Chairman and CEO, US Engineering Company Holdings

Danny O'Neill
CEO, Roasterie

Thomas O’Grady
President, HNTB Holdings, Inc.

Rick Oberdahlhoff
Director of Sales & Marketing, The Fontaine Hotel Country Cub Plaza

Tracey Osborne Oltjen
President & CEO, Overland Park Chamber of Commerce

Nate Orr
Partner, Spencer Fane LLP

Patrick Ottensmeyer
President & CEO, Kansas City Southern

John Owen
President & CEO, Airshare

Gayle Packer
CEO, Terracon

Bob Page
President & CEO, The University of Kansas Health System

Roshann Parris
Founder and CEO, Parris Communications

Tracey Passantino
Co-Founder, Foundation4 Domestic Violence Prevention

Anurag Patel
CEO, Helix Health

Torree Pederson
President/CEO, Aligned

Tammy Peterman
President, Kansas City Division, The University of Kansas Health System

Michael Poppa
Executive Director, Mainstream Coalition

Stacie Prosser
Publisher, Kansas City Business Journal

Joe Reardon
President/CEO, Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce

Bob Regnier
Executive Chairman & CEO, Bank of Blue Valley

Steve Renz
Senior Vice President - Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch

Dennis Ridenour
President & CEO, BioNexus KC

Andy Rieger
President, J. Rieger & Co.

Laurie Roberts
President, Parris Communications

Timothy J. Ross, PE
President/CEO, GBA

Joshua Rowland
Chief Executive Officer, Lead Bank

Mark Sappington
Partner, Kutak Rock

Brad Satterwhite
Partner, Principal, KEM STUDIO

Keely J. Schneider
Executive Director, Workforce Partnership

Ryan Sciara
Owner, Underdog Wine Co.

Dave Scott
Principal, Avid Communications

Nicholas Segura
CEO, Segura Marketing & Media Solutions

Brent Shafer
Chairman and CEO, Cerner Corporation

Neal Sharma

Gerald Shechter
Sustainability Coordinator, City of Kansas City, MO

Andrew D. Siebert

Jeff Simon
Office Managing Partner, Husch Blackwell

Scott Slabotsky
CEO, Slabotsky Family Office

Amy Slattery
Founder + CEO, Odimo LLC

Jim Sluyter
President and CEO, The Jewish Community Center

Rich Smith
President / CEO, Henderson Engineers

Stephenie Smith, MSW
Managing Partner, Sophic Solutions, LLC

Anne St. Peter
Founder, Global Prairie

John P. Stacy
President, J.P. Stacy & Company

John D. Starr
Chairman, UltraSource LLC

Brent Stewart
President/CEO, United Way of Greater Kansas City

Mike Stradinger
CEO, Holland 1916

Erin Stucky
President and CEO, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City

Patrick Stueve
Partner, Stueve Siegel Hanson LLP

Awais Sufi
President and CEO, SchoolSmartKC

Dawn Taylor
Executive Director, American Institute of Architects Kansas City

Paul Thomas
CEO, North American Savings Bank

Qiana Thomason
President & CEO, Health Forward Foundation

Terry Trafton
President & CEO, Alternatives EAP & CommCARE Behavioral Health

Timothy W. Triplett
Executive Vice President & General Counsel, Black & Veatch

Tucker Trotter
CEO, Dimensional Innovations

Angelo Trozzolo
President & CEO, Trozzolo Communications Group

Sherry Turner
Founder, OneKC for Women

Sheryl Wagner
Vice President / Director of Accounting, Terracon Consultants, Inc.

Elizabeth MacLeod Walls
President, William Jewell College

David Warm
Executive Director, Mid-America Regional Council

Caitlin Waters
Consultant, CBIZ

Justin Watkins
CEO, Native Digital

Carolyn Watley
VP Community Engagement, CBIZ

Hillary Weber
Founder/Managing Partner, Weworth Capital

Eileen Weir
Mayor, City of Independence

Joy Wheeler
CEO, Girl Scouts NE KS NW MO

Ethan Whitehill
Chief Marketing Officer, MERGE

Debbie Wilkerson
President & CEO, Greater Kansas City Community Foundation

Robin Winner
Co-Executive Director, Synergy Services, Inc.

Chris Wood
CEO / Partner, Paige Technologies

L. William Zahner
CEO, A. Zahner Company

Pedro Zamora
Executive Director, Hispanic Economic Development Corporation


Supporting Research

Physical distancing, face masks, and eye protection to prevent person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis

A rapid systematic review of the efficacy of face masks and respirators against coronaviruses and other respiratory transmissible viruses for the community, healthcare workers and sick patients

A modelling framework to assess the likely effectiveness of facemasks in combination with ‘lock-down’ in managing the COVID-19 pandemic

Goldman Sachs analysts find national mask mandate would save $1 trillion dollars