International Day of Happiness

March 20 is the International Day of Happiness. How will you celebrate?

Top 5 Tips to Celebrate Safely During Spring Holidays

Spring is in the air and Spring Break is on our minds. With the pandemic still active around us, we’re finding ways to prioritize our own health while also working to protect the safety of those around us. Here are our Top 5 Tips to help you have a happy and healthy spring season.

1. Consider a “stay-cation” at home. Finding new activities at home or around your hometown may spark some of the best memories ever!

2. Get Outdoors. Hiking, kayaking, a picnic, or even a weekend camping trip are safer ways to enjoy a beautiful change of scenery.

3. Recreate your favorite vacation at home. Are you missing your favorite vacation destination? Recreate it, and avoid the risks associated with airports and a new city. For example, a themed meal, reading in a hammock, a foreign film, or a spa night may help you feel like you’ve gotten away – without the jet lag!

4. Find fun activities with members of your household. Spend time playing games together, have a movie marathon, or learn a new hobby. Just be sure to take plenty of photos!

5. Plan and prepare. There’s no time like the present to consider where you’d like to visit once it is safer again. Research destinations, plan your budget, and work out the details so you’ll be prepared for your next adventure.


Stay connected! You can follow L&P on Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn.

Community & Culture: Spiva Center for the Arts

Last week, we introduced you to one of the exhibitions currently on display at the George A. Spiva Center for the Arts. L&P has a long history of supporting the arts in our community and are a corporate sponsor of their organization. The show, scheduled to run through March 13th, is a perfect representation of the importance of this philanthropy — educating all of us about the history of the Joplin community, while also highlighting the accomplishments and work of African American artists, musicians, athletes, and poets.

Spiva’s Main Gallery exhibit, Route 66: Crossing Cultural Lines, showcases more than 100 works by some of America’s premier painters, sculptors, textile artists, poets, and photographers. These works highlight the significant role that Route 66 played in cross-pollinating cultures throughout our country.

“The artists are presenting their interpretations of the stories associated with the highway,” says curator Sara Sonié Joi Thompson-Ruffin. “These experiences include professional baseball, territory bands, jazz musicians, civil rights crusades, military bases, or hopping in that big red truck to search for that perfect place to go camping and fishing. Art is a powerful tool of the truth, and these artists serve as our custodial documenters of our past.”

Fiber artist and designer, Kim Newton, is one of several artists featured in the exhibit. Kim has been recognized as one of the top 100 African Americans in corporate America, having served as Senior Vice President of Consumer Experience of the Hallmark Brand, where she’s enjoyed a 20-plus year career. She’s also been named to the 2017 class of The Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute and serves as a member of The Executive Leadership Council, The Network of Executive Women, African-American Artist Collective, The Links, Inc. and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

Kim Newton is an accomplished Fiber Artist and Designer. She is featured above with two of her textiles – a depiction of Langston Hughes, a Joplin native and poet, novelist, fiction writer, playwright, and Harlem Renaissance pioneer (left); and a depiction of an African American woman using real jewelry as a 3D element of the piece (right).

Kim’s grandmother taught her traditional quilting when she was 22. She evolved to a modern approach to the craft, putting herself and her experiences into the storytelling. Instantly recognized as unique, she had the opportunity to feature her quilts in her first show at 28, and eventually secured her first solo show in May of 2020. She works almost exclusively with Indonesian batik fabric because of their color vibrancy, symbolic meaning, and workmanship. She believes the variation of the fabric brings movement to and enhances the emotion of her pieces.

Click here to take a virtual tour of the Spiva Center for the Arts exhibition.

Community & Culture: Spiva Center for the Arts

This textile by Sara Sonié Joi Thompson-Ruffin, titled “Outside My Picture Window / Mayfair 33502”, is displayed with a list of the streets of East Town, Joplin. The artwork represents the historic African American community where the artist was raised and nurtured. The exhibition at the George A. Spiva Center for the Arts is open through March 13th.

Anyone who has visited L&P’s Corporate Office has seen the extensive collection of paintings which grace our hallways. Two of our former CEOs, Harry Cornell and Felix Wright, were passionate collectors of fine art. This appreciation led to Leggett & Platt’s long history of supporting the arts within our local community. The current exhibition at the George A. Spiva Center for the Arts is a perfect representation of the importance of this philanthropy — educating all of us about the history of the Joplin community, while also highlighting the accomplishments and work of African American artists, musicians, athletes, and poets.

The show, scheduled to run through March 13th, features three unique exhibits, curated by nationally acclaimed fabric artist and Joplin native, Sara Sonié Joi Thompson-Ruffin. Her own work is featured in one of those exhibits, entitled Journey: Legacy, East Town.


According to Ms. Thompson-Ruffin’s artist statement, East Town is an exhibition curated in a mixture of textiles designed to engage the viewer in a visual conversation. Many of these textiles are accompanied by poetry written by Sonia Sanchez, a writer and educator considered by many to be the leading female voice of the Black Revolution.

“This collection is a touchstone of accounts, experiences, and contributions of Joplin’s East Town,” says Sara. “It shares a people’s journey, facing the hardships and adversities of building a viable community during a time when African Americans were not welcomed to live in or around Missouri and its surrounding areas.”

The work also highlights the rich resiliency of Joplin’s historic African American community, where she was raised and nurtured.

“The African American residents of Joplin persevered through all adversities. They used their talents, gifts, and education to build a strong and vibrant community in spite of all the challenges that besieged them,” shares Sara. “We are all the legacy of their gifts.”

Black History Month: Garrett Morgan

We can learn a lot from those who came before us – and there are many who helped pave the way for modern manufacturing. In honor of Black History Month, learn with us as we recognize the achievements of some truly remarkable innovators, inventors, and manufacturing pioneers.

Black History Month: Sarah Goode

We can learn a lot from those who came before us – and there are many who helped pave the way for modern manufacturing. In honor of Black History Month, learn with us as we recognize the achievements of some truly remarkable innovators, inventors, and manufacturing pioneers.

Russ Dunton Celebrates 25 Years at L&P!

Russ Dunton began his career at L&P in 1996, when he was hired as the Manager of Tooling and Maintenance in Kendallville, IN. In late January, he proudly celebrated 25 years with L&P! When asked what he appreciates most about working here, he immediately gave credit to the challenging work environment and our people.

“Leggett & Platt has provided many advancement opportunities without having to change employers, which is often the case for engineers,” says Russ. “New responsibilities maintain my interest and keep the work fresh.”

In his most recent position as Director of Central & West Coast Operations, he works closely with teams from L&P Furniture Division in City of Industry, CA and Kendallville, IN. He admits that it sounds like a mission statement to focus on supplying customers with a great product at a fair price, all while providing excellent customer service. However, he enjoys supporting the work that makes that happen.

“My typical day is a mixture of helping my staff perform and address operational, sales, and financial tasks associated with operations,” says Russ.  “No two days are alike, and there are many interesting challenges along the way.”

More than anything, Russ appreciates the great people he works with and treats them like a family. He encourages his teams to get involved in new projects and to grow in their success.

“In my experience, L&P embraces those who have aptitude and interest. Opportunity is available to those who work hard and look for it.”