For the first time in 30 years, the Kansas City community experienced a heroic baseball season as the Kansas City Royals came from behind to win the fifth game against the New York Mets and bring home the World Series trophy.

Similar to the boys in blue, Dwayne Williams and Ken Bacon are hitting home runs in their respective businesses by impacting thousands of vulnerable people in Kansas City. Both men attended Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, and are now using their careers to serve and demonstrate the love of Christ on a daily basis.

Dwayne Williams currently serves as the president/CEO of Twelfth Street Heritage Development Corporation, which has rehabilitated nearly 150 homes in the most distressed areas of Kansas City, Missouri. Twelfth Street Heritage’s mission is to improve the quality of life for residents of Kansas City’s most challenged urban neighborhoods. Established in 1984, TSHDC has been a catalyst for remarkable and measurable community progress. Dwayne also serves the Kansas City community by dedicating his time on multiple boards and committees. His motto in life is, When much is given, much is required.

Ken Bacon is the president/CEO of Shawnee Mission Health and regional CEO of the Mid-America Region of Adventist Health System. Prior to joining SMH in April 2012, Ken served as CEO of Littleton Adventist Hospital in Colorado. During his 20 plus years with AHS, Ken has developed a record of growing clinical areas such as neuroscience, cardiology, oncology and trauma, while placing a priority on building physician and community relationships. He currently chairs the Kansas City Area Hospital Council and serves on a number of other boards and committees.

A team of champions

Last November Dwayne and Ken collaborated on the 21st annual Santa’s Wonderland that provides clothing and toys for thousands of economically challenged families. Ken and his wife, DeAnna, served as the 2015 chairs of Santa’s Wonderland, an event sponsored by Twelfth Street Heritage.

“As part of our mission to extend the healing ministry of Christ, it was a natural fit to support an organization with a similar purpose,” says Ken. “It was such a rewarding experience to be part of Santa’s Wonderland and support a cause that provides much joy to children in need.”

Dwayne agrees that it’s “a wonderful feeling to wake up and use the vocational vehicle that God has blessed me with to impact the lives of others. It’s moments like these that ignite me to wake up and come to work every day.”

Throughout Kansas City, Ken and Dwayne are displaying the same level of intensity demonstrated by the Kansas City Royals as they champion the love of Christ and honor the commandment “love they neighbor as thyself.”

Thalia Cherry writes for Twelfth Street Heritage Development Corporation.