Michelle Baumstark

  •  Michelle Baumstark

    Title:  Chief Communications Officer   

    Mailing address:
    1818 West Worley Street
    Columbia, MO 65203

    Contact information:
    Phone: (573) 214-3960
    Fax: (573) 214-3401     

    Email: mbaumstark@cpsk12.org


    I have a degree in journalism from the University of Missouri with minors in English and political science. I loved my time at Mizzou and the education and experience I gained through the journalism program has been invaluable to me.

    Work experience:
    I began my career as a news reporter covering everything from education to crime to local and state government.  I later moved into the field of public relations. I spent nearly seven years at the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education working in public relations, communications and administration and accountability before joining Columbia Public Schools.  I have been with Columbia Public Schools for 16 years.   I love my job.  It’s challenging, it’s chaotic, it’s different every day.  It allows me to blend the only two things I ever wanted to be when I was little – a teacher and a reporter.  It’s the best of both worlds to work in public relations in the field of education.  I still use all the skills I learned in journalism school, but I get to do it in an environment that embraces helping others work and learn how to be their best every day.   

    It’s one of the only fields where you can see the impact of your efforts blossom over time and take pride the success of others.  From the perspective of a school communications professional, working in education is about developing and investing in an effective public relations program that promotes planned, ongoing, two-way communication between the school and its community.  This is key to building an honest relationship between the school district and its stakeholders resulting in better educational programs and experiences for all of our learners.

    Community service and organizations:
    Columbia Rotary South
    Boone County Historical Society Endowment Trust
    City of Columbia Substance Abuse Advisory Commission
    Columbia Values Diversity Celebration Planning Committee
    Columbia Public Schools Foundation
    Countdown to Kickoff Campaign Volunteer with the Food Bank of Central and Northeast Missouri
    Heart of Missouri United Way Campaign Volunteer
    Missouri School Public Relations Association
    National School Public Relations Association
    Mid-Missouri PRSA
    Public Relations Society of America
    Member of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church

    Family and personal interests:
    My husband, Frank, and I have been married for 21 years.  We met at a University of Missouri football game while we were both undergrads.  We have two intelligent, talented, and beautiful teenage daughters that attend Columbia Public Schools. 

    Columbia is amazing because it has many of the perks of a big city with all the benefits of a small town.  It’s very rare that I’m out and about and I don’t see someone I know and am able to stop and have a conversation. My family and I love Mizzou. We enjoy the football games in the fall and the basketball games in the winter. I have some avid golfers in my family so you can often find us on a golf course in Columbia on the weekends. The art galleries around town are fabulous.  The Boone County History & Culture Center is a hidden gem in our community and you should stop by and check it out sometime.  And of course, I wouldn’t be a good citizen if I didn’t mention the trails.  My family and I enjoy a walk with our dogs on the trail or a quick bike ride to dine in the district, at Cooper’s Landing, Rocheport or Katfish Katy’s.