Staff spotlight: Ashley Sperling adds enthusiasm and experience to accounting team

Small Towns

Rural America has always been home to Ashley Sperling. Even after she moved away for college, she found herself drawn to the comfort of small towns and gravel roads.

Ashley grew up on an acreage just outside of Oakland, Nebraska. She spent her childhood helping her dad with cattle chores, playing in the creeks with her brothers, and running around town with friends.

After graduating with a bachelor's degree in business administration from Midland Lutheran College, now Midland University, Ashley worked as an accountant for several years before taking time off to raise her three boys.

Recently, Ashley and her family moved back to Oakland so her kids could have the same kind of experience she had as a child.

With her children growing up, Ashley decided she wanted to find her way back into the world of finance. She got that opportunity when she joined the Center for Rural Affairs as an accounting associate.

“I'm excited to stretch my brain in new ways once again,” Ashley said.

Dongwen Wang, accounting manager for the Center, says Ashley is a great fit with the accounting staff, and the Center overall.

“Her past accounting experience, especially on the auditing side, is a great addition to our team,” Dongwen said. “She's eager to get things done and always up for new challenges and projects. Ashley’s enthusiasm for all the things the Center is doing and offering to our rural communities makes her a joy to work with.”

Ashley helps keep the Center's books and financials and files grant reports, among other tasks.

“My coworkers are wonderful, and I love the mission of the Center to further fund, educate, and innovate rural communities to keep small towns thriving,” she said. “I hope to cultivate and maintain the kind of interoffice relationships that have been so apparent here, and be a valuable member of the finance team.”

When she’s not working with numbers, Ashley nurtures her green thumb by tending to her plants. She’s also an enthusiastic supporter of the Chicago Cubs and enjoys watching her team play.

Ashely works out of the Center’s main office, in Lyons, Nebraska; reach her at 402.687.2100, ext. 1021, or