Missouri Speaker of House Tim Jones, R-Eureka, opened a new district office at 137B South Central Ave. in Eureka on Thursday evening at the conclusion of a four-day, 20-city tour this week around Missouri. The office is housed in a building erected in 1894 as the first Eureka High School.
On the tour, which started Monday, he spoke to voters, community leaders and business owners to obtain their input about prioritizing Missouri's important issues. He said he and his team logged 2,150 miles this week zig-zagging from cities, such as Poplar Bluff to West Plains to Branson and Lockwood. Lockwood is the location of his family's farm. He also conducted numerous media interviews along the route about what he called on Thursday at the new office ribbon-cutting the "Three Es platform":
- Economic Development
- Energy Independence
- Education Reform
Click here to see the blog Jones posted through Eureka-Wildwood Patch about the tour schedule.
Jones was elected to the House in November 2006, and subsequently re-elected in 2008, 2010, and 2012. He was unanimously elected as Speaker in September for the remaining months of the 2012 session, and was chosen as Speaker-Elect for the 2013-2014 General Assembly. Jones serves as representative for the 110th District, which includes portions of Franklin and St. Louis Counties. He is an attorney at the Chesterfield-based offices of DosterUllom, LLC, and currently resides in Eureka with his wife, Suzanne, and their two daughters.
"You've invested in me, and as the first speaker from Eureka, this is not just an office for me. It's an office for you," Jones told attendees at the ribbon-cutting.
Eureka Mayor Kevin Coffey said the new office showcases the pride the community has in Jones. "Tim is all about family, faith and determination."
Coffey said he believed having a new district office in Eureka matches the city's persona. "We've done well as a small town that kept its focus on quality. We've had consistent growth, and a great mix of family values and rural atmosphere in an upscale community. Tim reflects all those Eureka qualities. I'm sure he will do the state and our city proud."
Jones said he hopes to put Eureka "on the map," and to showcase it as much as he can in his new role in Jefferson City.
Missouri Sen. Jane Cunningham, R-Chesterfield, who has served with Jones for the past six years, said at the open house it was interesting at first to see him "be in the primary frying pan to see if he would melt."
Cunningham said Jones has a backbone and proved he can stand the pressure that comes from groups and individuals. "We are fortunate to have him representing us."
Jones said Cunningham, who he called a champion of small business and education, would continue to be an important part of his future.
Cunningham presented another attendee, Mark Schwieder, with a framed resolution about his dedication and contributions to Missouri's politics, which include being a 7th senatorial district liaison for her service area. Schwieder, a retired Rockwood School District teacher from Ellisville, and his family members were thanked for the work they spearheaded into establishing the new district office, including supervising the remodeling and decorating.
Schwieder said Jones was a trajectory, and would keep moving up in Missouri's political responsibilities.
The next U.S. Representative for Missouri's 2nd District, Ann Wagner, also attended Thursday's event.