The Kansas City area will have a strong voice in Jefferson City beginning in the 2025 legislative session. Missouri Republicans have selected the current majority leader, Rep. John Patterson of Lee’s Summit, as the next speaker.
“I want to thank my fellow caucus members for their support and for placing their trust and faith in me as we move Missouri forward,” he said.
Patterson, 43, is trained as a general surgeon and will become the first person of color elevated to House speaker in Missouri, assuming Republicans, as expected, win control of the Missouri House again in 2024. He said his priorities would include continuing to invest in infrastructure, ensuring schools produce students that can compete globally and public safety.
Patterson said his parents adopted him from an orphanage in South Korea and that he arrived in Kansas City in 1986 at 6 years old. His dad worked at Hallmark while his mother was a stay-at-home mom.
“I’m the luckiest person you’ve ever met, I really am — to be given a family, to be made in America,” he said. “There are people that came way before and did not have the opportunities that I have had because of their race. I’ve never been hindered by it, and it’s because of those people.”
Patterson graduated from Blue Springs High School in 1998 and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Missouri-Columbia, according to his House biography. He worked at Truman Medical Center in downtown Kansas City to complete his medical residency and worked as a general surgeon in Jackson County between 2011 and 2022. He also has embarked on surgical mission trips abroad, to the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Jordan. He currently lives in Lee’s Summit with his wife and two children.
Republicans won 111 seats in the last election. Democrats gained three seats to control 52 districts after the latest round of redistricting. It takes 82 seats to form a majority in the House. All 163 House districts will be up for grabs in the November 2024 general election.