2023 Topeka Business Hall of Fame Laureates Announced
Author: Ashley Charest
Published: Tuesday, 13 Sep 2022
Image caption: 2023 Topeka Business Hall of Fame Laureates
The 2023 Topeka Business Hall of Fame laureates were announced at a brunch on Tuesday, September 13. Four business leaders will join the Topeka Business Hall of Fame in March 2023.
The 2023 laureates are Dan Foltz, KBS Constructors, Inc.; Marsha Sheahan, Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce; DL Smith, DL Smith Electrical Construction; and Keith Warta, Bartlett & West.
The 2023 Topeka Business Hall of Fame dinner honoring these individuals will be Thursday, March 23, 2023 at the Hotel Topeka @ City Center (formerly Capitol Plaza Hotel), Maner Conference Center.
Dan Foltz is the CEO of KBS Constructors, Inc. a Midwest commercial and industrial construction company specializing in providing construction and management services in mission-critical and sensitive environment-type projects. Involved in the construction industry for more than 45 years, Dan is a Past President and long-time board member of the Associated General Contractors of Kansas.
Dan is a Board Member and Past Chairman of GO Topeka Economic Development and a member of their Innovation Advisory Board. He currently serves Washburn University Foundation as Board Member, Trustee, and Finance Committee member. He also serves on the Washburn MBA Advisory Council for the School of Business.
In the past, Dan has served as Chairman of the Board for Midland Care. He was a member of the Leadership Kansas class of 2008 and is currently serving on the Topeka Country Club Board.
A native Kansan and farm boy, he was born and raised as one of eight children on a farm near Garnett, KS. Dan and his wife Monica reside near Lake Perry. They enjoy life with their two sons, Paul and David. David lives in Colorado, while Paul, his wife Maggie, and their son Daniel live in the Kansas City Area.
Marsha Sheahan served the Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce as vice president of public relations from July 1979 through January 2015, more than 35 years. In her position at the Topeka Chamber, she directed marketing, publications, seminars, website development, and special events in addition to various administrative functions.
She directed the Leadership Greater Topeka program since its inception in 1984 through the 2015 program, returning in 2016 to again direct the program.
Marsha championed the start-up of Fast Forward (now Forge), the Chamber’s young professional program, and worked with Heartland Visioning from 2008-2015 serving on the management and steering committees.
Collaborating with colleagues from the Junior League of Topeka, Marsha coordinated efforts to establish the Topeka Community Foundation. She served on the steering committee and as the first board chair for two years.
Marsha completed the Kansas Health Foundation’s Kansas Community Leadership Institute, served as president of the Kansas Leadership Forum, and participated in Kansas Leadership Center seminars and workshops for more than 15 years.
Since retiring in January 2015, she has consulted with non-profit organizations regarding leadership skills, networking, strategic planning and boardsmanship.
She has been an active community volunteer with Junior League of Topeka, the Topeka Community Foundation, Topeka High School Historical Society, United Way of Greater Topeka, Women United, Safe Streets, Topeka Public Schools, CASA of Shawnee County, Stormont Vail HealthCare Community Advisory Council, Washburn Leadership Institute Advisory Council, and the YWCA.
Marsha earned a bachelor’s in Home Economics and Journalism from Kansas State University in 1971. She and her husband Bill have three adult children and three grandchildren.
DL Smith was born in Concordia and raised in Topeka where he attended Hayden High School, Washburn University, Kansas State University and in 1972 founded DL Smith Electrical Construction.
In his many years in the electrical industry DL was active in Industry related associations. He was a member of the Kansas chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association, where he served as their President and Governor and was a member of the negotiating committee and apprenticeship committee. With the National Electrical Contractors Association’s national organization, he served as District V Vice President, Chairman of the National Government Affairs Committee, member of the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee and was a member of NECA National Political Leadership Council. He also served on the Council of Industrial relations for the Electrical Industry which is a national arbitration board for the settlement of bargaining agreement disputes. In 1989 he was inducted as a Fellow into the Academy of Electrical Contracting.
In 1997 he received the Associations Comstock award recognizing his contributions in the field of labor relations and in 2000 he received the James A. McGraw award for the advancement of the electrical industry.
DL was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Associated Specialty Contractors of America and served as their Chairman in 2000-2001. He was a member of the Associated General Contractors of Kansas where he was a member of the Board of Directors and a member of the Kansas State University AGC Construction Science Advisory Board. He was inducted into the Sigma Lambda Chi International Honor Society for Construction at Kansas State University.
DL served on the Kansas State Building Advisory Commission from 1978-2015 and was a member of the City of Topeka Electrical Board for 30 years.
While at Washburn he was a member of the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity and in 1981 he was selected as the “Phi of the Year” for Kansas Beta of Phi Delta Theta. He now serves on the Washburn University Board of Trustees, their Development Committee and was a recent Member of their Board of Directors.
DL serves on the Board of Directors of Community Bank Topeka and is an active volunteer at Christ the King Catholic Church.
He is married to Suzy, has three grown children Steve (Debi), Shawn (Olga), Angie (Mike), nine grandchildren, lives in Topeka, and is now happily retired.
Keith Warta is currently serving as Chairman of the Bartlett & West Board of Directors. He formerly held several positions with the company including CEO for more than 13 years. Bartlett & West, Inc. is a Midwest employee-owned engineering, architecture, technology and construction company focused on improving communities by positively affecting every organization, every person, that comes within its footprint.
Bartlett & West delivers unique value to clients throughout the country and was previously named one of the 175 largest design companies in the US by the Engineering News Record. Zweig-White, an industry consultant, has also listed Bartlett & West as one of the Hot 100 Firms in the country for four years in a row.
Every employee at Bartlett & West participates in ownership and the company promotes involvement of all employees in important company decisions like charitable giving, strategy development, and their purpose and core values statement.
In previous roles with Bartlett & West, Keith’s focus was on the design and management of major flood control and transportation projects. His technical expertise is in hydrology and hydraulics associated with urban infrastructure. As part of his graduate work, Keith authored a study that examined design storm assumptions and the impact that they have on flood control system costs.
Keith has a passion for community improvement at the grass roots level. He has volunteered for leadership positions in organizations providing senior services, education and community economic development. Keith co-chaired committees that developed and implemented Topeka/Shawnee County’s first holistic community strategic plan and chaired Midland Care’s board of directors during the integration of Meals-On-Wheels into Midland’s senior services.