I was born and raised in Kennett, Missouri, which is located in the Bootheel Region of the State. I grew up on the family farm where my father and I raised cattle and crops, primarily cotton, soybeans, wheat, corn and watermelons. I liked farm life, especially the quarter horses we raised, trained and showed. My mother was a school teacher in the Kennett Public School System where she primarily taught third grade. I attended the Kennett public schools, graduating in 1965. I am the proud father of two sons, John M. Williams, II and Christopher R. Williams. Both of my sons attended and graduated from Central High School, where they participated with distinction in the school’s athletic programs.
I attended Arkansas State University where I received a B.S. Degree in Business Administration with a minor in Accounting, in 1969. Upon graduation I was awarded a position as Graduate Assistant to teach General Business and Principles of Accounting at Central Missouri State University, where I earned a Master of Arts Degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Management, Marketing and Finance in 1970. Upon graduation, I went to work as a Market Analyst for Ford Motor Company in Detroit, Michigan.
In August, 1971, seeking a career change and warmer weather, I entered the Cumberland School of Law at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. I received my Juris Doctorate Degree in 1974. While attending law school, I also taught at Jefferson County Community College and also served as an Assistant Professor in Business at Daniel Payne College. Both institutions are also located in Birmingham, Alabama. After graduation I accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Business at Morehead State University in Morehead, Kentucky.
In 1974 I took the Missouri Bar Examination and was subsequently licensed to practice law by the State of Missouri. I began the active practice of law with Robert A. McIlrath in Flat River, Missouri, in 1975. It was a general practice that covered all areas of the law where I had the opportunity to assist people with their legal problems in the civil, criminal and/or appellate areas of the law both state and federal. The practice included jury and non-jury trials.
In 1978 I opened up my own office on the corner Science and High Streets, in Flat River, by Central High School. The old building was replaced with a new one in May 1984 next to the old one. The practice has been in the areas of general civil, criminal law and bankruptcy. Many changes have occurred over the years.
The City of Flat River is now the City of Park Hills. The one thing that has not changed since 1975 is my commitment to help people, to the best of my abilities, with the legal problems they are facing, should they choose to allow me the privilege of serving them.