A fifth generation Missourian, Jason learned early in life about the importance of community service. His mother was a juvenile probation officer and his father was a police officer who later ran a small business.
While in college, Jason enlisted in the Army Reserve after 9/11 and served in an infantry unit before receiving his commission as a Military Intelligence Officer. In 2006, he volunteered to deploy to Afghanistan, where he investigated groups and individuals suspected of government corruption, espionage, drug trafficking, and facilitating Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
In an unclassified evaluation, Jason’s commanders praised his willingness to volunteer for dangerous duty, describing him as an “outstanding leader” whose work saved lives. The U.S. Director of Intelligence in Afghanistan advised the Army to “track this officer’s career closely; he is one of the best.” Jason earned national recognition for his service when he was selected as one of 10 finalists for the 2010 Army Reserve Junior Officer of the Year Award by the Reserve Officer Association.
After he returned home from Afghanistan, Jason made his first run for public office. In 2008 he knocked on 20,000 doors on his way to becoming a State Representative. He served in the State Legislature from 2009-2013, and was also a member of the Missouri Veterans Commission.
Jason is married to his high school sweetheart, Diana.
**Jason Kander is a former member of the Missouri Army National Guard and a former member of U.S. Army Reserve. Use of his military rank, job titles and photographs in uniform does not imply endorsement by the Missouri National Guard, the Department of the Army or the Department of Defense.