Missouri Military Academy (MMA) is pleased to announce that University of Missouri-Columbia Law School Dean Bob Bailey has joined the Academy’s Board of Trustees. In his role as trustee, Bailey will help provide strategic oversight and support to MMA, one of the United States’ top college preparatory military boarding school. An all-male school, MMA provides residential and day school education for middle and high school (grades 7-12, plus post-grad year).
“We are excited to welcome Bob to the MMA Board of Trustees,” said MMA President Brigadier General Richard V. Geraci, USA (Ret). “An impressive leader in a variety of areas, he brings tremendous experience, passion for education, and legal expertise to the board. I look forward to working with him and to his support, perspectives, insights, and guidance.”
Bailey joined the University of Missouri Law School in 1979. He left full-time employment at the Law School from 1983-87 to serve as municipal judge for the City of Columbia, while continuing to work at the law school part-time. In 1987 he returned full-time to the law school and now serves as assistant dean emeritus and CSDR Senior Fellow. He directed the Center for the Study of Dispute Resolution from 2008 to 2014. He continued to serve as Associate Municipal Judge until June 2005. He taught Arbitration, Life Skills Seminar, a freshman interest group (FIG) and a course in the Kinder Institute. A military veteran, he was instrumental in starting the Veterans’ Clinic at the MU Law School.
He maintains an active arbitration practice, serving on several arbitration panels including having served on Major League Baseball’s Salary Arbitration panel. He is on the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service Labor Arbitration panel and served as the National Academy of Arbitrators vice president.
Bailey compares the lessons learned by NCAA athletes to those taught to the middle school and high school cadets at MMA.
“My law students who were Division I, II or III athletes come into the law school with a leg up,” Bailey said, commenting on the strenuous academic and athletic schedules they maintained during their undergraduate careers. “They come in with a sense of structure, discipline, organization and the ability to manage time and prioritize tasks that need to be accomplished. The mission of the Academy is to teach the cadets those same attributes and abilities, plus help them understand what their talents are. The MMA education helps cadets graduate from high school more disciplined and mature — and that makes a difference.”
Now in a position to help MMA provide this impactful education for young men, Bailey says he has lived an “unbelievably charmed life.” Growing up, his family lived at or below the poverty line. He describes his parents as huge role models.
“My parents were incredibly kind, generous and caring,” said Bailey. “They were also incredibly in love, and they taught me how to be a good husband and father.”
A first-generation college graduate, his best friend’s mother pushed him to attend college.
“Cornelia Kelly was an amazing woman,” Bailey commented, giving credit to this mentor.
She served in in World War II as a member of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the precursor to the CIA. With her encouragement, Bailey attended Marist College with her son Chris. He was drafted and spent two years in the Army as a Vietnamese interpreter, which later enabled him to attend law school on the GI Bill.
Bailey has found success in his personal and professional life by developing and maintaining strong relationships and serving others. His life reflects how he has built upon the example that his parents and Cornelia Kelly set for him.
“I hope I can help cadets with my ability to make connections for them,” Bailey said.
He also plans to use his viewpoint from growing up in a lower socioeconomic background to add perspective to the Board.
Highly involved in University of Missouri and community projects, Bailey has served as chair or a member on the boards of numerous community organizations and received several honors for his contributions. He served as chair of the MU Athletic Department’s Strategic Planning Committee and the Professional Sports Counsel Panel for almost two decades. He was vice-chair of the Health Science’s Institutional Review Board and is a National Conference on Uniform State Laws Commissioner, serving on the Athlete Agent and Veterans Court Drafting Committees. He has been an active supporter, including serving as chair, of the Boone Family Resource Center, the Family Health Center, the Central Missouri Food Bank, the Regional AIDS Interfaith Network, and the Industrial Development Authority. He is active with the NCAA and has served as an accreditor at Division I universities and has conducted strategic planning for the Division I Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
Bailey is married to Sharon, a retired kindergarten teacher. They have two children, Tara and Jessica, and four grandchildren, Caden, Bryson, Nathan, and Sadie Jane.
The MMA Board of Trustees is comprised of professionals (business, banking, legal, retired military, medical), former parents, and alumni who believe in the Academy’s mission and formally meets four times per year, in addition to regular committee meetings and monthly executive committee meetings.