David O’Dell, CPA and longtime Professor of Accounting at McPherson College, recently announced his intention to seek election for the District 3 County Commissioner seat in McPherson County. O’Dell officially filed for candidacy on February 24th, stating that he wants to “give back” to the community that is his lifelong home.
O’Dell retired in December after 40 years of teaching in the business department at McPherson College as a tenured professor, knowing that he wanted to continue to embrace service as a chief component of his active lifestyle. County government seems a natural fit for O’Dell who has been active in promoting entrepreneurship and stewardship at the local, regional and state for over 30 years. O’Dell has served on the board of directors of Kansas Certified Development Companies for 30 years and was appointed by McPherson County Commissioners to the board of directors of the South Central Kansas Economic Development District, a position he has held since 1997. O’Dell also currently serves on the board of directors of the Kansas Center for Entrepreneurship (Network Kansas).
“As someone who grew up in a family business and who owned my own CPA practice in this community for over 30 years, I have had the honor of advising other small business owners as executive director of the McPherson County Small Business Development Association,” said O’Dell, who has consulted on over 300 local business projects over a 35-year period.
“As a county commissioner, I will pursue fiscal leadership as a top priority,” he said.
“ I hope to bring leadership, insight, and integrity to this position, should I become a McPherson County Commissioner,” said O’Dell, “ I hope to build upon the strong leadership of the past, to rely upon my own history as a lifelong citizen of McPherson County, and to strategically plan for a future that will strengthen the diverse strands that together make our county a wonderful place to live.”
O’Dell sold his CPA firm in 2015 and currently practices as a CPA for Adams, Brown, Beran and Ball, Certified Public Accountants in McPherson on a limited basis. He served as campaign treasurer on five successful political campaigns for Dick Nichols, Les Mason, and Tom Brown from 1990-2017. Other civic and political posts include board positions for Sunflower Bank, USD 418, McPherson Hospital, McPherson County Community Foundation, Countryside Covenant Church, McPherson E-Community, McPherson Chamber of Commerce, Hospice and Home Care of Reno and McPherson Counties, Republican Party (county and district levels), The Cedars, the McPherson Museum, and McPherson Kiwanis Club., He was selected to participate in Leadership McPherson and Leadership Kansas. He served as Vice-Chair of the Kansas Delegation to the White House Conference on Small Business.
As a CPA, O’Dell has held multiple state positions on boards including the Educational Foundation of the Kansas Society of CPAs and the Central Kansas Chapter of Kansas CPA’s. He is a long time member of the American Institute of CPAs and the Kansas Society of CPAs.
O’Dell and his wife, Jaymie, are members of Countryside Covenant Church, where O’Dell has taught Sunday School and classes for Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University and has been active in Promise Keepers, and Fellowship of Companies for Christ International.
A three-time cancer survivor, O’Dell delivered the “Survivor Speech” at the inaugural McPherson County Relay for Life event in 1995. He rates the standing ovation he received there as one of the highlights of his public life. Since that event, O’Dell has spoken about his cancer experiences to various civic and student groups. In addition to speaking publicly about his cancer survivorship, O’Dell served as keynote speaker for the Chi Beta Sigma National Conference, and the Church of the Brethren National Youth Conference.