The new fiscal year on July 1 will bring with it staff changes and reorganization in the office of Missouri State University President Clifton M. Smart III. The changes involve two new administrators and three current ones.
The current responsibilities of the retiring Paul Kincaid, chief of staff and assistant to the president for university relations, will be redistributed. Kincaid announced in September 2013 that he would step out of his current roles, which includes governmental relations, on July 1 and officially retire Oct. 1. As a result, those responsibilities will move to others:
- Ryan DeBoef, current legal counsel at Missouri State, will become the chief of staff and assistant to the president for governmental relations. He will be responsible for governmental relations at the state level.
- Dr. Jim Baker, vice president for research, economic development and international programs, will add federal governmental relations to his portfolio.
- M. Suzanne Shaw has been named the new vice president for marketing and communications with responsibilities over the unit formerly known as university relations: university communications, publications, web and new media, photographic services, and athletics communications.
There also will be changes in the general counsel’s office:
- Penni Groves, current general counsel, will, at her request, move to the role of legal counsel.
- Rachael M. Dockery has been hired as the new general counsel.
The appointments and changes are subject to approval by the Board of Governors.
DeBoef has been legal counsel at Missouri State since September 2011. Prior to coming to Missouri State, he was senior associate attorney for Husch Blackwell in Springfield from 2009-11 and served as law clerk for the late Judge Richard E. Dorr of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri.
DeBoef received his B.S. degree from Evangel University in 2001 with a double major in public administration and government. He received his Juris Doctorate cum laude in 2005 from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law, graduating first in his class and serving as senior note and comment editor for the Missouri Law Review.
Since 2007, DeBoef has been active with the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce’s governmental relations committee, serving as vice chair from 2010-12 and as chair since 2013. He also has served on the Chamber’s emerging issues committee, serving as chair from 2010-12.
Dr. Jim Baker
Baker has been at Missouri State since 1993, serving as assistant to the president from 1993-2005, and as vice president since 2005. He oversees the office of research administration, the Roy Blunt Jordan Valley Innovation Center, the Robert W. Plaster Center for Free Enterprise and Business Development, including The eFactory, and international programs, including the China program, international partnerships and the Study Away Program.
He will add federal governmental relations as of July 1.
Shaw comes to Missouri State from Purdue University where she was most recently assistant vice president of strategic marketing and market research. She also had responsibility for creative services during her four-year tenure that ended in 2013.
Prior to working at Purdue, Shaw was director of marketing for Universal Building Products in Bellwood, Ill., in 2007-08 and director of marketing and customer service for The Chicago Faucet Company from 2000-06.
Shaw received her B.A. degree in computational math/pre-engineering from DePauw University, her B.S. degree in industrial engineering from Purdue and her M.B.A. in general management from The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.
She will begin her duties between July 1 and Aug. 1 at a salary of $135,000.
Groves was part-time legal counsel at Missouri State from 2004-11. In 2011, she was named interim general counsel, taking over as permanent general counsel in 2013.
Groves received her B.A. degree with honors in English Literature in 1985 and her Juris Doctorate in 1989, both from Baylor University. She also did graduate work in British Literature at Edinburgh University in Scotland in 1985-86 through a Rotary Fellowship. Earlier this year, she received the Women’s Justice Award from Missouri Lawyers Weekly.
She will move to the part-time role July 1.
Dockery comes to Missouri State from CoxHealth where she has served as assistant general counsel since 2010. Prior to that, she was a shareholder in the Strong-Garner-Bauer law firm where she worked from 2005-10. She also served as law clerk for Missouri Appellate Court Judge Nancy Rahmeyer.
Dockery received her B.A. degree with honors in English in 1999 from the University of Arkansas. She received her Juris Doctorate degree in May 2003 from the University of Arkansas, graduating summa cum laude and finishing first in her class. She also served as editor-in-chief of the Arkansas Law Review in 2002-03.
In 2013, Dockery received the Women’s Justice Award from Missouri Lawyers Weekly, and was honored as a Missouri Lawyers Up and Coming Lawyer in 2012.
Dockery begins her new role July 1 at a salary of $145,000.