James Kirkpatrick (politician)

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For other politicians of this name, see James Kirkpatrick (disambiguation).
James C. Kirkpatrick
32nd Secretary of State of Missouri
In office
January 11, 1965 – January 8, 1985
Preceded by Warren E. Hearnes
Succeeded by Roy D. Blunt
Personal details
Born James C. Kirkpatrick
(1905-06-15)June 15, 1905
Braymer, Missouri, U.S.
Died December 26, 1997(1997-12-26) (aged 92)
Warrenburg, Missouri, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Jessamine Young
Doris Houx
Alma mater Central Missouri State College

James C. Kirkpatrick (June 15, 1905 – December 26, 1997) was a politician from the U.S. State of Missouri.

Early life[edit]

He was born in Braymer, Missouri, graduated from Northeast High School in Kansas City, Missouri and Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg, Missouri. He was a member of Sigma Tau Gamma Fraternity. He started his newspaper career at The Daily Star-Journal in Warrensburg and rose to be its editor. He went on to be editor of the Jefferson City News-Tribune. He purchased weekly newspapers Windsor, Missouri Review and then the Lamar, Missouri Democrat. Governor Forrest Smith asked him to write speeches for him. In 1960 he was defeated by Warren Hearnes in his first bid for Missouri Secretary of State. He won his first term in 1964.[1]


A member of the Democratic Party, he served as Missouri's Secretary of State from 1965 to 1985, establishing the current Missouri record for tenure of an elected state constitutional officer.

Kirkpatrick was a publisher by trade; the Northwest Missouri Press Association gives an annual award bearing his name.

In His Honor[edit]

Numerous public facilities in Missouri have been named in Kirkpatrick's honor. Senate Concurrent Resolution 36, passed in 1998, renamed Missouri's State Information Center the James C. Kirkpatrick Information Center. The main library at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg, Missouri, is named the James C. Kirkpatrick Library.

Excellence in Governance Award[edit]

The Student Government Association at the University of Central Missouri has established the "James C. Kirkpatrick Excellence in Governance Award" for outstanding public service and the promotion of higher education in Missouri. This acknowledgment of service is awarded every spring for the past 23 years in the James C. Kirkpatrick Library around St. Patrick's day in honor of Mr. Kirkpatricks heritage.

Past recipients[edit]

  • Governor Matt Blunt,
  • Deleta Williams, State Representative and current UCM Board of Governors member,
  • Senator Claire McCaskill,
  • Governor Jay Nixon,
  • Robin Carnahan, Missouri Secretary of State,
  • David Pearce, State Representative,
  • Paul Levota, House Democratic Leader.


External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Warren E. Hearnes
Missouri Secretary of State
Succeeded by
Roy Blunt