There’s a new Executive Director of the Missouri Ethics Commission as Julie Allen takes over the post. And the man who held the post from March of 2002 through March of this year and then stayed on as an advisor, is retired.
Bob Connor has seen a lot of changes since he started working for the Commission. He believes the biggest accomplishment during his time at the helm is the transparency regarding donations and donors. "When I came in," says Connor, "The reputation of the Commission in automation and so forth was very, very low. The press was upset with the Commission and so forth and we went from a grade of F to a grade of A this year in a national poll."
Records that at one time had to be viewed, in person, at the Commission offices, can now be viewed from anywhere in the state, the country, or the world – online. And, thanks to legislation passed by the General Assembly, large contributions must be filed, electronically, shortly after they are received. Says Connor: "The new $5,000 … I think that was really good for the Legislature and for the public because now you can see who donated and how much money they were donating and it is there within … 48 hours."
Connor says that while he is open to various opportunities he is retired and has no intention of working full time again. His plans are clear: "I’m just gonna go home and enjoy life."