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George Koch's Lindsay Schmitt Receives 20 Under 40 Nomination

By Annie Adelman
Special to Evansville Courier & Press USA TODAY NETWORK

For Lindsay Schmitt, it all began with an internship with a local public accounting and consulting firm, Harding Shymanski & Co.  She started during tax season and, after graduating that fall, she went on to work their full-time as an auditor.  It was there that she started working with the Koch Enterprises, Inc. account and, when a position became available, she joined Koch Company, Southwester Communications and, later on, George Koch Sons, LLC.

"It's been fun to open my eyes to see different things and meet different people," said Lindsay Schmitt.  "With KOCH, we're all different companies, but all report to the same people.  We're all kind of a family."

Throughout her career at Harding, Schmitt worked with non-profit organizations and got to know the people behind them, including the United Way of Southwestern Indiana (UWSWI).  When she was asked to take over one of the positions on the board, Schmitt jumped on it.

"It was really kind of a cool experience for me," she said.  "Everyone always tells you to get involved in the community and, as I was auditing these people, I really understood their mission and their drive and the good they do in the community."

The next year, she was asked to be treasurer for UWSWI, a position that she has held ever since.

Matt Theby, Vice President of Lensing Building Specialties, has worked with Schmitt through serving on the finance committee and other baord activities at UWSWI. 

"Lindsay has really demonstrated strong leadership throughout United Way and through Koch Enterprises," he said.  "She's definitely been a strong contributor to the United Way.  She was willing to step up when the United Way needed her most during transitions.  It ends up benefiting the community and we're very thankful for her contributions."

According to Theby, Schmitt has a talent for balancing needs as a community and delicate situations with personnel.  Schmitt said she always tries to help, whether it is through volunteering or donating to charities.  "What I love about the United Way is that it may be one organization, but we halp so many programs in the community.  You can do so many things with just one step," she said.  "I've really enjoyed it, because when I was an auditor for United Way at Harding, I knew a lot about the internal workings for the organization."

Because of her experience, Schmitt feels that the organization can make larger steps to improve the community.  Being aware of some of the difficulties Evansville has faced recently - from shootings to drug-related deaths - Schmitt said she worries that people will lose sight of the good things that are happening in the community. 

"If we can do anything, I just hope that we can be able to promote the good in society versus the bad that's happening.  Part of that is raising more money to fund these programs to help people that need help or point them in the right direction," she concluded.