The Missouri Times is speaking to new lawmakers this session. Get to know more of the “Freshmen to Watch” here.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Rep. Bruce Sassmann represents HD 62, with more counties than any other district.
HD 62 includes Maries County and parts of Cole, Crawford, Gasconade, Miller, Osage, and Phelps counties. And while it is the largest district, HD 62, is composed of very small towns.
“It’s an hour and a half drive from one end [of the district] to the other; it’s a pretty good stretch,” Sassmann told The Missouri Times.
Sassmann grew up in Bland, graduating from high school with only 18 people in his class. After that, he attended Missouri State University.
Prior to serving in the statehouse, Sassmann served stints as Bland’s mayor and an alderman. He’s owned a convenience store for 25 years and recently sold his family’s century-old funeral business. A member of the Special Committee on Small Business, he said his background has prepared him for committee work.
Sassmann also serves on the Conservation and Natural Resources Committee as well as the Special Committee on Tourism.
Sassmann has sponsored three bills — two of which have to deal with death certificates and the death registration process — and all stalled before session’s end. However, Sassmann said he wanted to learn the ropes through filing the bills as much as he wanted them to pass.
“While [the bills] were subject matter that interests me, the purpose for filing a motion was not the subject matter as much as it was to learn the process,” Sassmann said. “To learn how to file a bill, how to create a bill — that was my goal in my first session.”
An avid hunter and fisher, Sassmann is passionate about Missouri conservation and state parks. He was named the Wildlife Conservationist of the Year in 2009 and Conservation Educator of the Year in 2017 by the Conservation Federation of Missouri.
“I support the mission of the Missouri Conservation Department and the mission of our state,” Sassmann said. “Missouri Department of Conservation [and] Missouri State Parks are near and dear to me.”
Elise Eaker studies journalism at Lincoln University. Prior to Lincoln, Elise graduated from Fulton High School. She is a native of Fulton.