Tell us a little about yourself:
Robert Moore was born in the small farming community of Algoma, Mississippi. He grew up on a 40-acre farm still owned by the family. He lived with his mother and father and three siblings on the farm. He attended Usher Valley Colored Elementary School at Algoma and later Pontotoc Colored Attendance Center for High School. Upon graduation from high school, Robert joined the Army and was sent to Fort Jackson South Carolina for basic training. This was Robert’s first trip outside of Pontotoc, with the exception of a trip to the Memphis Zoo. This army experience began the opening of an entirely new chapter in his life. During his three-year army tour, he was stationed in Kansas and Germany. He often reflected he was serving in Germany when the death of President Kennedy was announced on November 22, 1963, Following the army tour, he returned to Pontotoc in August of 1965, where he landed a job in the local furniture factor making $0.75 an hour.
In October of 1965, Robert made the transition from Pontotoc, Mississippi, to Rockford, Illinois, where his family life and career aspirations took root. He arrived in Rockford with a high school education and $20.00 Today, Robert has a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree from the University of Illinois at Springfield. He has written articles for numerous police magazines, including his nationwide manuscript “Strategies for Increasing Black Police Executives,” published by the U.S. Justice Department in the FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin May-June 1983 issue. Moore is also the author of the historic book The Presidents Men: Black Marshals in America–The Story of Black Leadership in the United Marshal Service since 1875.
He is an independent historian and writer for the website Blackpast.org. He has recently written articles on black Secret Service agents. He is a graduate of the National Police Academy, Southern Police Institute, University of Louisville, Ky. In July of 2002, Moore returned to Mississippi as the 25th Chief of Police of Jackson, Mississippi. Fifty years after his graduation from Pontotoc Colored High, (1962} he would be invited, as an author and retired United States Marshal, to the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) to participate in the 50th anniversary of the Integration of Ole Miss by James Meredith on October 1, 20012
Robert is a retired Illinois State Police Special Agent Sergeant, retired United States Marshal, and former Deputy Chief of Police, Criminal Investigation, Savannah Georgia Police Department, and former Chief of Police of Jackson Ms. Marshal Moore presently serves as a Police Consultant, Chairman of the Criminal Justice Committee (CJC) for the State of Illinois NAACP branches and serves on the Association Board of Directors of Orange Lake Resort, Orlando, Florida.
As a Police Community Relations Consultant, he conducts police studies, serves as a Police Chief Assessor and trains citizens how to avoid confrontations with police. His success in providing leadership to teams, committees, organizations, and cities is well documented. As a Police Chief assessor, he holds a certificate of training from the Illinois Association of Chief of Police and has served on Chief’s assessment panels across Illinois. As the NAACP (CJC) Marshal Moore is working with the NAACP and the Illinois Chiefs in holding relationship-building conversations meetings around the state.
- When and why did you begin writing?
During college, Robert was required to write numerous papers while completing his Master’s Degree at Sangamon State University. He also wrote many proposals on his job; however, in 1983 his writing experience got the greatest news any author could receive. The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) notified Robert that his first manuscript was to be published nationwide. He was serving as an Illinois State Trooper working as the Equal Employment Opportunity Director for the Illinois Department of Law Enforcement. His manuscript, Strategies for Increasing Black Police Executives was published in the FBI Law-Enforcement Bulletin in the May-June 1983 issue. This DOJ publication assisted Trooper Moore in launching a nationwide movement to improve employment and promotional opportunities for African American police applicants and police officers nationwide.
The paper was written as a requirement for the National Police Academy. The Department of Justice provided the resources by publishing Moore’s publication. It was made available to all police agencies and college libraries nationwide. The publication launched Trooper Moore’s national law enforcement writing presence and helped fuel a movement that drew other people to him and gave impetus to the inclusion for ethnic minorities and females in the Illinois State Police and police agencies nationwide.
3. When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Despite the success and recognition of that manuscript, his self-published historic book, The Presidents Men: Black United States Marshals in America published in 2010 made him reevaluate his status as a writer. This is a book that fills in what history had left out. It gives a clear historical picture of the selection of African –American marshals by Democrat and Republican parties’ presidents in the 225-year history of these appointments.
The book is a culmination of a twelve-year research journey for Moore. He was appointed United States Marshal by President Bill Clinton in 1994, the second African American from the state of Illinois.
It gives new insight into the oldest law enforcement agency in the nation and introduces readers to the 68 prestigious men and women who have received these appointments from only nine presidents, since the inception of the marshal service in 1789.
4 What have you published? Have there been any other accomplishments you want to discuss?
He noted other articles: “The History of Minorities in Illinois State Police,” “Racial Profiling,” “Solving the Crises of the Black Male,” “Crime in the Black Community: A Generation at Risk.” He also has done police studies for the Springfield Police Department and for the Pursuit Driving Commission in Mississippi.
5. Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?
I want them to know, “You can write and preserve your own history.”
6. What are your current projects?
Robert is in the beginning stage of plotting the upgrading of his book and is presently awaiting the appointment of the United States Marshals by the Trump administration to see if he diversifies his appointments
Robert is also presenting seminars on how to avoid confrontation with law enforcement doing a traffic stop.
7. Do you see writing as a career?
I will continue to write short article but not as a career
8. Who are some of your favorite authors? What really strikes you about their work?
John Maxwell—The Power of your Leadership —John shares information of how one individual can start a movement and draw others to the movement
Bolden, Abraham: The tragic story of Abraham Bolden, The Echo From Dealey Plaza. This is the true story of the first Black Secret Service Agent of the White House detail
Turk, David Forging the Star This is a modern history of the United States Marshal Service.
9. Who designed your covers?
Yvonne and Tony Rose of Amber Books
10. What are your hobbies?
Travel and golf were his favorites. Now he enjoys serving as a curator, for a national black marshal traveling exhibit.
11. What was your journey to publication?
Understanding public policy and understanding how writing and the ability to make a presentation affected outcomes encouraged Moore to refine his writing skills. He became a courageous writer when he started writing letters to the editor on public policy issues and later writing guest editorials for several newspapers.
His early introduction to television, magazine, and newspapers interviews and writing begin in 1977 when he wrote five affirmative plans for the Illinois state police which helped change the work from 1.9 percent black state troopers to 27.5 minorities and females (1974-1998). His first major recruitment interview was with WGN in Chicago. Moore reflects that he was so nervous that he couldn’t remember anything he said during the interview. However, following the interview with WGN, he and his assistant boarded the state police airplane at Migs Field and headed for East St. Louis for his interview at the local radio station. He remembers a publication “History of Minorities in the Department of Law Enforcement,” which was not met with glee. The article described the hiring patterns of the state police during the entire decade of the 1950s 1960s and 70s. . Twenty years later in 1979, Moore was asked for permission to publish the article in the State Police Anniversary magazine.
12. Pantser or plotter?
13. Do you have a mentor or writing group?
No mentor—he belongs to a Black Writer Group.
14. Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?
I want them to experience the impact of excluding a whole group of people’s accomplishment out of history and denying them recognition for their contributions.