Springfield, MO

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2014 Men of the Year Honoree: Robert Roberts

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When it comes to service to others, Robert Roberts is delivering the goods.

A 40-year U.S. Postal Service employee, and the Springfield postmaster from 1996 to 2001, Roberts had worked the past 13 years as Second Baptist Church’s minister to Springfield. The former coordinator of community services in March dramatically expanded his scope of influence as he took on the role of interim minister of missions, helping to coordinate 31 church plants, missionaries and Second Baptist partners around the globe.

Roberts serves on several boards focused on making tangible differences in the lives of his neighbors, including The Good Community Committee, the Every Child Promise Committee, the Mayor’s Commission for Children, the executive committee for the United Way of the Ozarks and on the boards of the Pregnancy Care Center and the Salvation Army.

“As a minister, I am involved with church activities that affect and influence our community by working with 17 different community partnerships in and around Springfield,” Roberts says. “I think it is important that when you serve on a board or participate in the community that you always add value to the individuals and the company or organization.”

One of the ways Roberts tries to add value is by looking for opportunities to nurture the talents of others.

“If you just look around your workplace, there are many people who have talent. They just might need encouragement or a mentor,” Roberts says. “To date, I have been able to assist 87 individuals to succeed in their business careers. Also, I have had the pleasure of helping many put together resumes or open the door for an interview so they might succeed on their own.”

Roberts takes pride in each type of service he commits to.

“During my tenure with the U.S. Postal Service, we were able to influence businesses throughout the United States as they started overseas shipments of products. The simple task of making a job easier, smarter and saving of time and money for U.S. companies was both personally rewarding and made them more successful at the same time,” Roberts says. “There is simple joy in seeing others succeed as they grow and develop and then contribute to the success of others and themselves.”

Real leadership, according to Roberts, is all about finding ways to bring out the best in others.

“I have always thought leaders need to cast vision, provide opportunity for success, develop others and then move out of the way,” he says, adding when people in power save the toughest assignments for themselves, they demonstrate the biblical model for leadership he tries to emulate. “Accordingly, I have always been involved in the community to show others how important it is to serve and demonstrate first, then mentor, followed by allowing others to succeed and become better than yourself.”

Leadership, he says, often starts small and then its influence grows.

“Identify two or three close friends or associates and together influence the actions of another eight or 10 so you might change an organization, company or community,” Roberts says.  [[In-content Ad]]


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