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2023 Class Of Rising Stars – William Block

Kansas City shines brighter with each passing year, thanks to the spirit of individuals who devote themselves to making a positive impact. Within this constellation of changemakers is William Block, an exceptional volunteer whose philanthropic endeavors have earned him a well-deserved place among The Independent’s 2023 Class of Rising Stars. Will, as he prefers to be called, is committed to taking on leadership roles and giving back to the community. “Hard work, humility, and a responsibility to give back are general values I was raised on and strive to live by each day,” he said. “There is always a need for service-minded individuals, and they are more important now than ever.”

Will has undoubtedly embraced the values instilled by his family, wholeheartedly striving to lead authentically and remain humble in his roles within the community. With this in mind, his philanthropic activities extend far and wide, encompassing numerous organizations and causes.

In his capacity as a second-term City Director and Mayor-elect member of the board of directors for the University Health Hospital System, Will said he has been able to gain invaluable knowledge and insights into the essential healthcare industry. Will’s commitment to the institution stems from a profound appreciation for its significance. As a hospital devoted to academic medical care for all, Will said he believes the University Health Hospital System holds immense importance for Kansas City. In his role on the board of directors, he is determined to educate others, raise awareness about the hospital’s significance, and foster a deeper understanding of its vital contributions to the community.

Another organization that has greatly benefited from Will’s involvement is Big Brothers Big Sisters Kansas City, which pairs children with adult mentors. For the organization’s Most Wanted Auction, Will raised an astounding $317,005, providing the means to create numerous life-changing mentorship matches in which “Bigs” will empower “Littles” to fuel their potential. “The dollars we raised will help us to create a ton of matches for all of the Littles in the community who are currently waiting, looking for mentors and figures in their life they can look up to and learn from,” Will said. “This money will go directly to creating those matches.”

Will’s contributions to the organization have not gone unnoticed. Maddy Trofholz, Big Brothers Big Sisters Kansas City, commended his efforts, stating, “Will has gone above and beyond during his time as a Most Wanted Honoree and has raised a significant amount of funds to help further our mission. He is a great example of what it means to be a community leader, and I know he will continue doing great things in the Kansas City community for many years to come!”

In addition, Will’s impact reaches beyond mentorship programs and extends to community development. As President and Director of ReNew KC Neighborhoods, he is working to establish affordable, safe, and secure housing in areas of the community that need it the most. Through the organization, Will has set goals to address the housing crisis faced by the homeless, veterans, and elderly populations. 

One recent project that showcased Will’s leadership and expertise was the restoration of a family’s home in Independence, Missouri. When the roof had partially collapsed, endangering the occupants, Will stepped in with his extensive knowledge of real estate, construction, and development. He rallied the necessary resources, guided the family through the process, hired a construction company, and ensured that the home was once again safe and secure. This act of kindness exemplifies Will’s commitment to making a tangible difference in the community and in the lives of those who need it most.

In addition, as Chairman of the Board for the Allen and Gloria Block Family Foundation, Will’s philanthropic reach extends to a diverse range of charitable causes in the Greater Kansas City area. His family values and dedication to improving the lives of others have become essential pillars of his personal and professional ethos.

When asked about his advice for young people starting their journeys in community service and engagement, Will offered valuable insights. “In my mind, a true leader is characterized as an individual who’s able to take action and lead by example,” he said.Start by taking the initiative early and prioritize the idea of giving back to your community as a part of your personal long-term goals.”

Will’s own experiences have demonstrated the rewards of volunteering, which has not only benefited others but also provided personal fulfillment and growth. “It was humbling to be recognized by some of my peers,” said Will. “I do a lot of things as part of the community to give back. You don’t expect it to come back around and be recognized. It motivates me to want to do more in the future.”

Looking ahead, Will remains driven to continue his career founded on service, striving to create a lasting positive impact in Kansas City and beyond. With a steadfast commitment to both the commercial real estate industry and his dedication to community service, Will Block is making a remarkable impact in Kansas City. His unwavering commitment serves as a catalyst for change and a source of inspiration for others.

Featured in the July 22, 2023 issue of The Independent.
Photo Credit: Tom Styrkowicz
By Monica V. Reynolds





Monica V. Reynolds is an award-winning former reporter who honed her skills at a daily newspaper in Northeast Louisiana. After spending more than a decade in Austin, Texas, she recently moved to Our Town. Monica’s passion for journalism extends to documentary short filmmaking and photography. She is the founder of Vox Pop Marketing, an online marketing and web design firm that helps small businesses develop an authentic, magnetic message and online presence.


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