2023 Biography of Robert P Gephardt
I was born and raised in Arkansas City, Kansas, graduating from Arkansas City High School in 1971. I attended Oklahoma State University (OSU), graduating with a BS degree in Business Administration and minor in Economics. Prior to graduating from OSU I served with the United States Coat Guard aboard two 378 foot high endurance coast guard cutters patrolling the coast of Alaska, North Pacific, Bering Sea and Arctic Ocean.
After graduating college in 1982, I applied and was accepted for employment with the United States Treasury Department, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency as a National Bank Examiner. I was stationed out of Joplin, Missouri, which is how I became a Missouri resident. Examiners at that time spent approximately 90% of their time in overnight travel status. In 1991 I had the opportunity to join First City National Bank in Springfield Missouri, as Vice President of Commercial Lending. In 1996 I was offered a position with Liberty Bank, Springfield, Missouri, as a Senior Vice President and Commercial Lender with responsibilities to open additional branches. In 2015, Simmons Bank purchased Liberty Bank and I became the Community Bank President for Simmons over the Joplin, Carthage and Mt. Vernon Missouri markets. I retired from banking July 2020.
Why did I become a mason? My brother-in-law John Thomas, mason and Past Potentate of Abou Ben Adhem Shrine, Springfield, MO, convinced me to become a mason. Because of his influence I joined Fellowship Lodge #345 in 2005. I am a life member and Past Master of Fellowship Lodge. I am a 33 Degree Scottish Rite Mason and life member of the Valley of Joplin where I serve as Treasurer for the Valley and Rite Care. I am a life member of all three of the Joplin York Rite Bodies where I am a Past High Priest, Past Illustrious Master and Past Eminent Commander. I am a member of Abou Ben Adhem Shrine, Springfield and a Past Sovereign of St Andrew Red Cross of Constantine. I am a member of the Truman Club and have served on the Board of the Masonic Home of Missouri.
I currently in Carl Junction, MO, with my wife Lynn. We have two children, Ryan Harrell and Megan Allen, and four grandchildren, Reese, Tiffany, Beau and Sadie.