Three Appointed to MSSU Board of Governors

Nov. 3, 2011

Rod E. Surber, Director, University Relations & Marketing, or 417.625.9399

Stephen E. Smith, News Bureau Manager, or 417.625.6506

JOPLIN, MO (SNS) – Two new members and a student representative have been appointed to the Missouri Southern State University Board of Governors, it was announced this week by Gov. Jay Nixon.

Charles (Chuck) Surface, a Republican from Joplin, and James B. Fleischaker, a Democrat from Joplin, were appointed to serve 6-year terms on the MSSU Board. Mr. Surface replaces Charles C. McGinty, D.D.S., (R) also of Joplin, whose term officially expired Aug. 30, 2010. Mr. Surface’s term will end Aug. 30, 2016. Due to the special legislative session called by Gov. Nixon, the appointment of Mr. Surface, originally made in August, had to be resubmitted.

Mr. Fleischaker replaces H. Dwight Douglas, (R), of Joplin whose term expired Aug. 30, 2011. Mr. Fleischaker’s term will end Aug. 30, 2017.

The Governor also appointed David W. Sigars, Neosho, to fill a non-voting student representative seat on the Board. Mr. Sigars will complete a two-year term that officially ends Dec. 31, 2011, which was previously held by Ezekiel P. Tarrant, Webb City, who graduated in May.

Senate consent is required for these appointments.

Charles (Chuck) Surface

Mr. Surface (R) has served as Director of Economic Development for the city of Webb City since 2007, and directed efforts to have the city named a certified local government and to create a downtown historic district and historic commission.

He served 18 years in the General Assembly, representing the 128th and 129th districts, after being first elected in 1984; was Presiding Commissioner of Jasper County from 2003 to 2006; and also served on the Joplin City Council.

A veteran of the U.S. Air Force, Mr. Surface is a graduate of Missouri Southern State University, and is a past recipient of the university’s Outstanding Alumnus Award. Over the years, he also has been active in numerous local civic and non-profit organizations.

James B. Fleischaker

Mr. Fleischaker is a former Circuit Judge for Jasper County, and has served as a Joplin Special Road District commissioner. He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce from 1994 to 2002 and served as chairman in 2001 and 2002.

Mr. Fleischaker is a member of the Jasper County Bar Association, the Missouri Bar, and the Southwest Missouri Estate Planning Council. He served as President of the Estate Planning Council in 1990-1991.

He earned his undergraduate degree from Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa, and attended Law School at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is a member of Phi Delta Phi, the world’s second largest legal fraternity.

He serves on the City of Joplin Personnel Board and the Freeman Health System Board of Directors in addition to several other civic boards and committees.

A member of the Fleischaker & Williams, L.C. firm in Joplin, his practice focuses on various areas including Probate Law, Estate Planning, Property Law and Family Law.

David W. Sigars

Mr. Sigars is a Junior Speech Communication major from Neosho. He is an officer (Treasurer/Finance Chair) on the MSSU Student Senate and is a member of the MSSU Iota Chapter of Alpha Chi, a national scholastic honor society. In order be eligible for the Alpha Chi organization, students must be juniors or seniors with a cumulative grade point average of 3.7 or above.

Missouri Southern State University Board of Governors

Board members are appointed to six year terms and the non-voting student representative is appointed for a two-year term. The Missouri Southern State University Board of Governors acts on behalf of the people of Missouri to oversee the successful implementation of well-planned and sound academic programs of higher learning for the benefit of the students of the University. The Governor of the State of Missouri directs that the MSSU Board appoints the president; supports the president; reviews the performance of the president; clarifies the institution's mission; approves long-range plans; oversees the education programs; preserves institutional independence; ensures financial solvency; enhances the University's public image; and assesses the Board's performance.

Not more than four members may be members of the same political party.

Information about other MSSU Board members is available on the University’s website at

For more information about state Boards and Commissions visit