The man I am writing about is not an American Idol, but he should be a Blue Springs Idol! Who is he and why? Well, his name is Patrick Starke.

The man I am writing about is not an American Idol, but he should be a Blue Springs Idol! Who is he and why? Well, his name is Patrick Starke.

He was born in Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., in 1954. He graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1976, and in 1979 he graduated from MU-Columbia with a Juris Doctor Degree in Law.

What has Pat done that he should be idolized by the citizen of Blue Springs? Fair question:

 After Pat graduated from law school, he moved to Blue Springs where he started his law practice. For a short time, he worked for the law firm of Cochran & Oswald. In 1983, a new law firm of Grimes, Welch & Starke was formed. Pat continued to specialize in litigation and was quite successful.

Larry Welch, his former partner, described Pat as a fearless lawyer. He said Pat was a strong advocate for his clients and referred to him as a man of character and integrity with a great legal insight.

Vanessa Starke, his daughter, is also a lawyer in his firm. When asked how she would describe her father, she said he is one of the hardest working persons she has ever met and thinks he works just as hard to be a dad! Having worked with him as a lawyer, she now knows what a really exceptional lawyer and person he really is.

For the record, Pat is not just another Blue Springs lawyer. While Pat is dedicated to his profession, he also is a hard worker and tireless in his involvement as a member and a leader of social and civic activities in causes in Blue Springs and Jackson County.

The following, just to name a few, is a list of his social and civic activities: In a 10-year span, January 1976-1986, he served as a Captain in the U.S. Army (Cmpl Jog); he served 2 years-Missouri Bar Association Young Lawyers Section, and from 2006 to date, on the Board of Governors from Missouri Bar; a member of KCMBA Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys; and Missouri Criminal Defense Association. He has been a member and president of each of the following: Blue Springs Chamber of Commerce, Blue Springs Jaycees, Blue Springs Rotary Club, Blue Springs Board of Education, and candidate for Missouri Senate, Chairman of Board of Trustees and Woods Chapel Methodist Church.

Finally, he was elected and is now serving as president of the Missouri Bar Association, September 2012-2013, a prestigious honor. To my knowledge, he is the first practicing Blue Springs lawyer to have served in that capacity.

I have been the city of Blue Springs prosecutor for more than 40 years. During that period of time, I have tried many cases against Patrick Starke. I have found him to be an exceptional lawyer. He is a man of his word and he gives it his all. Recently in Missouri and across America, there has been a movement to take away the independence of our Judiciary. For the last two years, as president and president elect of the Missouri Bar Association, Pat has dedicated almost all of his working hours traveling across Missouri lecturing and seeking support for our Missouri Nonpartisan Court Plan. Pat, like most lawyers, feels our judges should not be obligated to those who finance judgeships. I believe Pat is a great American.

He does not have a roadside marker declaring his idolatry. However, when I look at the contributions and leadership Pat has provided this community over the last 34 years, I see someone special, someone to be admired. In my opinion, Pat is an excellent role model for my profession and for this community. I can only hope the citizens of Blue Springs see Pat as someone who is not only a good lawyer and father, but a community leader who leads by example, day in and day out, year in and year out.

 How many people do you know who have given more?

Robert Welch is the prosecuting attorney for city of Blue Springs