Robert L. (Bob) Peter, 68, of Ellinwood, passed away January 17, 2019 at Ellinwood Regional Hospital. He was born September 14, 1950 in Great Bend, Kansas, the son of Lorin and Jean (Reed) Peter. He graduated from Ellinwood High School with the class of 1968 with a impressive athletic career. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1970 spending most of his service in Germany. On September 6, 1970, he married Jackie Glenn. Upon their return to the States, he graduated from Emporia State in 1975 with a degree in secondary education and then from Denver University of Law in 1978. After receiving his law degree, he returned to Barton County where he remained to serve his home communities the rest of his life.
He began his law career in a small private practice then joined Keenan Mach Keenan law firm in Great Bend. He later partnered with John Carpenter. After becoming the Ellinwood city attorney, he opened a private practice in Ellinwood. He also represented multiple other municipalities, school districts and Barton Community College. In addition to serving the community in those capacities, he became the city manager in 2001 during which, he was a driving force in the development of the Kansas Power Pool. He was an original member of the first Board of Directors and as President from 2010-2012. During his eight years on the Board, he was the clear influential voice for the setting of policies, programs, investments and services to all member cities. He was also an effective advocate before the state legislature in Topeka and Congress in Washington D.C. He served with the Kansas Municipal Utilities in varying capacities including President from 2009 until his passing. He received the APPA Larry Hobart Seven Hats Award in 2014 and the KMU Schowalter Award in 2015. Throughout his law career, he served many individuals, friends and family.
He wed Julie on August 13, 1998. For the last 20 years, he has enjoyed traveling, following the Jayhawks, and immersing himself in his children and grandchildren’s lives. He was a constant presence in his community, and his family.
He is survived by his wife, Julie, his children Lindsay (Dennis) Cox, Kelly Peter, Cody (Christine) McNorton and Kelli (Slayton) Rous, grandchildren Dawson, Darrian, Diesel, Troy, and Carrington, and brothers Rollie (Sue Ann) and Brad (Vickie). He was preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral service will be 2:00 PM, Tuesday, January 22, 2019 at St. Joseph’s Catholic parish center in Ellinwood. Burial will follow at Lakin-Comanche District Cemetery in Ellinwood. Visitation will be Monday, January 21, 2019 from 1-8 PM with family receiving friends from 1-4 and 6-8 PM at Minnis Chapel in Ellinwood. Memorials are suggested to Ellinwood Public Education & Library Foundation in care of the Robert L. Peter scholarship fund, or Ellinwood EMS, in care of Minnis Chapel, PO Box 246, Ellinwood, KS 67526.
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