Government Relations

UM Legislative Update Newsletter

March 9, 2007

Legislator profile: Rep. Bob May

Bob MayRep. Bob May (R-Rolla) was first elected in 2000 to represent District 149, part of Phelps County, in the Missouri House of Representatives. May’s district is home to the University of Missouri-Rolla, which impacts the quality of life in the area. “I could show you UMR research programs that will make Missouri a better place to live and provide industry with the new techniques and manufacturing tools of the future. The research at UMR and the growth of Missouri companies like Boeing are linked,” May said.

May is a retired forester who received a bachelor of science degree in forestry from the University of Illinois. He spent 28 years in the U.S. Forest Service in Minnesota, Indiana and Missouri, working as a district ranger and forest staff officer. He also served in the U.S. Navy.

In the House, May serves as chair of the Elections Committee and as a member of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Special Committee on Rural Community Development.

“Higher education needs to educate our young people and those that seek a new career to provide that broad opportunity,” May said. “UMR is conducting the research that will be needed to make Missouri a leader.”

The challenge, according to May, is the “perception that we have a problem with affordability.” He recounts talking with a young UMR graduate who was expecting a high earning potential. “We are creating opportunity with a college education,” he said.

May praised the University of Missouri for its mission and its “strong undergraduate degree programs and excellent professional degree programs training physicians, engineers and other professionals.”

UMR, in particular, offers specialized research and doctoral programs, May noted. “The research they do is first-rate.”

“The UMR campus is the economic development engine for our area and the state,” May said. “We benefit insofar as the quality of life and many other ways.”

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