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History of the Missouri JCI Senate


Hospitality started as a keg of beer in the President’s sleeping room, there was no soda or hard liquor and definitely no food. Each Senator donated $2 to pay for the keg and it was available until it was empty. The demographics were pretty much active Jaycee age senators and pretty much came to get a beer and move on to the next meeting or activity. Just sitting around socializing was not the norm. It evolved into beer, soda, liquor and a few snacks over the years. However, the new “Ernie & Kristie” hospitality will be hard to match. It starts with Friday night dinner and snacks, biscuits and gravy for Saturday breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner for those not attending the banquet. The drinks are plentiful and varied. I feel sorry for the chairpersons that follow them. We took a few steps back in time this weekend, with lighter hospitality because Mary gave Kristie and Ernie the weekend off.

Some early projects that have endured the test of time have been our sports activities with Nebraska and Illinois. Mike Bibbs tried to hook us up with Iowa but it was not well received. KU/MU football courtesy of Jim Pendleton was fun, especially in Chiefs stadium. Changes to the college alignments have reduced the number of events but Gerry Moore and his band of helpers have kept us going for many years and we hope more to come even if down to only “The Braggin' Rights” game. We also enjoy Springfield Baseball thanks to Mary Holden and Mike Gilbert, St. Louis Cardinals courtesy of Susan Hatcher, Blues hockey thanks to Steven Swanson, Kansas City Royals due to David Page.

Projects over the years have included Wonderland Camp, Access Day at the Fair, Poker in Columbia, Strassenfest, Taste of Chesterfield, Jefferson City Fair, St. Charles Riverfest, St. Peters Mud Volleyball, Fall Retreat at the Lake, Holiday parties with Santa Brad and Elves Larry & Denny, hosted Regional and National meetings, Life Member Fund, Mo JCI Senate Foundation and the Food Experience.

The Food Experience has been lots of fun with good food around the country. We take the time to have a meal together in the location that the Region or National meeting is being held. Sometimes it is a Diner, DriveIn or Dive and sometimes it is some other hidden gem in that location. We find only the best places to go and always have a great time as a group. It is responsible for some new faces in the room: Marge Miller, Lori Oakland, Julie Rieckman, Ken Fischer, Melodie and Ray Ainslie who don’t reside in Missouri but have joined us for the weekend. There are a others that join us when we travel. There are a few non members here this weekend from our neighboring state to the East. So they don’t feel left out, I would like to invite Susie and Chris Curtis and Wayne Kiefer to join our ranks. We don’t want you to feel neglected. To be sure we don’t want to miss our own residents – Barb Pollette you too are invited to join the Mo JCI Senate, for only $25 per year you too can join enjoy the dining experience and so much more.

The Missouri JCI Senate has received many individual recognitions. Outstanding State Treasurers were:Mary Sawyer, Kathy Saladino, Barbie Huff, Randy Johnson, Mike Bibbs, Anner Hilgert, Boni Hart and Michelle Emmerich.
Our means of communication have grown from a paper newsletter to include a website, newsletters, e-blasts, and facebook. Webmaster Debbie Velten and eBlast chair Ken Risley and newsletter editors;John Rauechle, Yvonne Kline, Boni Hart and Lori Vincent have received region and state recognition for their efforts of keeping us informed.
Missouri JCI Senators have been recognized for their leadership abilities and accomplishments. Top state presidents, either as one of the top or “The” top: Ed Hart, Dennis Kramer, Dave DeLaney, Randy Johnson, Boni Hart, Tim Vincent, Susan Hatcher, and Tom Hendrix. Some have not been happy winners, Jim Mitchell really wanted MO JCI Senate to be recognized for their Return the Favor contributions rather than him as State President. His award was well deserved without his leadership we would not have been in the running for Return the Favor.

Missouri has four members that received the US Jaycees Return the Favor award:Mary Sawyer, Ed Hart, Larry Kenney & Tim Vincent. The US JCI and Region 6 Senates have given monthly or trimester recognition to Paul Dulle, Mike Freeman, Dennis Brenneke, Doug Bohn and Chris Deen for their contributions to local chapters. RTF has remained a number 1 priority in Missouri.

Even before we joined the US JCI Senate in 1977 we had Senators that were active on the National level. Ken Velten served as Chaplain and John Mills served as Region Vice President since then we have been an active state within the region, having 11 other members serve as Region Vice President: Bill Vishy, Earl Sawyer, Bob Carothers, Mike Moritz, Mary Sawyer, Bill Smith Jr, Randy Johnson, Donna DeLaney, Susan Hatcher, and in 2017-18 Tom Hendrix. Bill Smith Jr, Lea Ann Ford Smith and Susan Hatcher were recognized with the Donnie Alvis Memorial Award for outstanding Region Vice President. Mary & I were the first husband and wife to serve as Region VI Vice Presidents but Bill and Lea Ann Smith are the only husband and wife to have both won The Donnie Alvis award for Outstanding Vice President.
We have had three national officers of the US JCI Senate: Bob Holbert, Mary Sawyer and Ed Hart. Mary & Ed served as National President. Lot of members who have served as appointees. Everything from Mike Moritz - Ambassador to Australia, Tim Vincent - Constitution & ByLaws, & Return the Favor, Deb Rothweiler – Bid Review Committee, Donna DeLaney - Presidential Assistant & President’s Raffle along with Lori Oakland, Susan Hatcher - MENTORS Business Manager, & Future Directions, Michele Emmerich - Finance Committee, Mary Sawyer - Protocol Officer, Dave DeLaney – Historian, Marge Miller – Foundation Region Representative and probably a few that I missed.

We have had three officers of the US JCI Senate Foundation: Earl Sawyer as President & Treasurer, Bill Smith, Jr. as Vice President and Julie Rieckman as Secretary.

We have hosted 15 region meetings chaired by many and a FALL BOD and 1995 St Louis annual meeting chaired by David Page and 2005 St Charles annual meeting chaired by Gerry Moore.

In conclusion, Missouri has provided many leaders to the region and national organizations. The members have had the opportunity to participate in lots of fun activities. We continue to have fun and provide leaders. As you can see these 40 years have not been a one person organization, it was all of us. That’s why we continue to grow and why we need new members and ideas. Are you ready for the next forty years? Will you be an active player?

See me if you are interested in a Region or National Appointment – an Earl Sawyer paid political announcement.


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