1. Started practicing law in 1985 in Shawnee, Oklahoma.
a. Worked for 2.5 years in Oklahoma
b. Would work many 36 hour days
c. Spent most of my time working on multi-million dollar law suites
2. Last full year in Shawnee, Oklahoma, Attorney fees in the $650,000.00 range with a two Attorney law firm
a. Not happy – sought out Prosecutor/DA position.
b. Found position in Greene County, Missouri with Tom Mountjoy
i. To get to Greene County, sold home at $16,000.00 loss
ii. Left employment that where I would have been making at least $12,000.00 to $16,000.00 more a year.
3. Began with Tom in Greene County July 5th, 1988:
a. Start as APA, Alcohol Prosecutor, and white collar crime prosecutor
i. APA, Senior Assistant, and First Assistant Prosecutor
ii. Tried every type of criminal case imaginable
1. Tried a dozen civil jury cases – personal injury, as well as a number of criminal jury trials while defending the defendant (pre-public defender days in Oklahoma – all attorneys were placed on public defender list, but handled assigned public defender cases for boss along with all of his friends. - $150.00 for a plea and $500.00 if you tried the case in front of a jury.
2. It did not matter how much time you placed into prep time or motion practice.
a. No case on the jury docket for more than 90 days before trial, which included criminal cases.
4. Left a great job and sold a home for much less than I had in it to go to the PA’s office in Greene County, Missouri. I could work in Oklahoma and then Missouri because I took the Bar Exam in two states in one week.
a. Only one of 4 who took two bars in 1985 – I took Missouri written and then multi-state in Missouri and then flew in from Columbia, Missouri to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma for the written portion of the Oklahoma Bar Exam. Three of took the Missouri and the Oklahoma Bar and only one passed both, me.
5. Tried as many as 15 to 18 jury trials a year while in the Greene County Prosecutor’s Office – Mostly Alcohol related cases and then white collar crime cases.
6. I had no idea of how long I would stay, but told Tom Mountjoy that I would be there at least until acclimated to the Missouri system
a. Continued to stay in Greene County Prosecutor’s office from the 5th of July, until October of 2002
b. Ran and won Christian County Prosecutor’s position – became the first statutory full time prosecutor that started in January 1, 2007.
c. Brought the office up to speed in having Prosecutor’s filing cases instead of just the support help.
i. Each assistant had a tower and a lap top – allowed APAs to work at home.
ii. Spent many a night myself in my basement filing DWIs and other types of cases including the preparation for Jury trials until 4 or 5 in the morning.
iii. Always in the office at 8 to 8:15 a.m. unless had appointments for office.
7. Once I was sworn in, I tried my first Jury Trial on the 8th of January, 2003.
8. A part of the CASP board for a number of years
9. A part of the women’s shelter board from 2003 through the present
10. Began monthly breakfast meetings between PA office and law enforcement leaders and agencies. We met in different towns each week so that the people would see law enforcement together on issues.
11. Became and still am a member of the Freedom’s Rest Board
12. Member of Ozark Rotary Club since 2003
13. As Prosecutor, I was a member of the review board dealing with suspicious deaths of children in Christian County
14. First Prosecutor in Christian County to become Child Advocacy Center certified to make it easier to talk to children.
a. Sent other prosecutors to special training for everything from special issues to CAC training.
15. Participation with annual prayer breakfasts either in Nixa and Ozark as a speaker on a number of times.
16. Prepared Prosecutor’s office for paperless system by updating different parts of the computer system and then running special wires to enhance reception in different Courtrooms.
a. I did not complete the paperless system because the costs I was told were up to $37,000.00
b. Did not complete because took out all of the new equipment from the check fund.
i. First Prosecutor to cut budget and take equipment our of check fund.
17. Member of Nixa Assembly of God since 1998.
Many, many more examples, but this is just a few.
Came from a hard working family
1. Born on the 27th day of March, 1956
a. Jackson General Hospital in Jackson, Tennessee.
2. Spent my early years on the family farm as well as working on that farm beginning at age 8.
a. Picked cotton from the age of 6 until the age of 16.
b. Picked my first 100 lbs. in a burlap sack tied to my shoulder
3. First job at the age of 12 at Joe’s Drive Inn in Bolivar, TN, as a car hop
a. Worked from 11 a.m. until at least 11 p.m. during the week
b. Worked from 11 a.m. until 1 a.m. on weekends – worked a minimum of 4 days a week and weekend.
i. Pay was $3 plus tips.
4. Would go to work every Sunday and almost every Saturday – had to hitch hike from the ages of 12 until the age of 16.
5. At 18, went to work at Owen Corning Fiberglass so I could work 16 hours a day at least 3 days in a role and then worked another 3 16 hour days.
My attempt at balanced perspective
1. My life based upon Christian principles and the Bible.
a. But, decisions based upon law, experience, and common sense.
2. Christ as the head comes first
a. Then my wife
b. My family
c. And many more things until I find myself at the bottom.
3. Ran the Prosecutor’s Office in a way of respect, honor, and expectations.
4. The one person has been short changed in my time other than myself and then my family.
5. I have been married to Patricia Ann Last-Cleek from the 9th of January, 1980 and our love still grows strong
6. Have two sons,
a. Jeremy Justin (JJ) who is an in-flight linguist in the area of Korean for the Air Force
b. Dustin Kendall entered the Air Force last year, and
c. One daughter-in law, Amanda Cleek, is in the reserves
7. Both of my sons are married and my oldest has a little girl:
a. Emma Ann Cleek, born on the 19th of June, 2013.
b. She was named Emma for my Mother that passed away 6 years ago Christmas Eve, and Ann for each Grandmother whose middle name of each is Ann.
MAN OF FAITH
1. As stated, Christ is first in my life. Without Christ, there is no one else to lean upon.
a. Saved at 6 years of age on a Sunday evening
i. Jackson Assembly of God Church, Jackson, Tennessee
b. Baptized in water at age 7 at Milan First Assembly of God, Milan, Tennessee
c. Christ is just the best thing I have ever experienced and then my family
Attorney and Counselor at Law January 2011 – Present (3 years 7 months) Attorney Ron Cleek Attorney and Counselor at Law 2011 – Present (3 years) Elected Prosecutor - first full time Prosecutor Christian County, Missouri Prosecutor's Office - Elected Prosecutor January 2003 – December 2010 (8 years)|Ozark, Missouri Truly the best job of my life. I tried a number of types of trial to be ready for my next step - and we wil see if I win Judge.
Adjunct Professor Evangel University August 1990 – December 2010 (20 years 5 months)|Springfield, Missouri Area Worked as an adjunct for 20 years as well as well as having one semester full time. Taught about the Constitution as well as How God fit into the Constitution.
Assistant Prosecutor, Senior Assistant Procecutor, and 1st Assistant Prosecutor Greene County, Missouri, Prosecutor's Office July 1988 – October 2002 (14 years 4 months)|Springfield, Missouri Area One of the best jobs in my life, plus I learned so much from so many people including the best in Tom Mountjoy.
Big Dog Mike was law enforcement 1988 – 2002 (14 years) Associate Attorney Terry West and Associates November 1985 – July 1988 (2 years 9 months)|Shanee Oklahoma Worked on high level Personal injury cases and several big money cases.
O. W. Coburn School of Law at Oral Roberts University Doctor of Law (J.D.), specialize in Constitutional Law, 3.87 1982 – 1985 Great time until you get too many professors without any experience.
Memphis State University - now called University of Tennessee/Memphis Master of Arts (M.A.), Political Science and Government a concentration in Constitutional Law/Public Admin and Inter Lw, 3.58 1978 – 1980 Very difficult time. Had to work 40 hours plus a week as well as keep most of my grades up to the highest it could be.
Evangel University Bachelor's degree, Political Science and Government plus Constitutional Law 1974 – 1978 Loved the time at Evangel. Only the best of the best cam to Evangel and it was hard to get noticed at times, but God is faithful and I made it through