Bobby B. Simmons, Imperial Chaplain
During the 2017 Imperial Session of Shriners International – held in Daytona Beach, Florida, July 9 – 13, Imperial Potentate Gary J. Bergenske named Bobby B. Simmons of Bonaire, Georgia, Imperial Chaplain for the 2017-2018 Imperial Year.
Simmons served six years on the Shriners Hospitals for Children® Board of Trustees, from 2009 through 2015. In 2016, he was honored with the Imperial Potentate’s Award of Merit, the greatest honor the fraternity can bestow upon a Shriner.
Simmons was raised a Master Mason in 1967 and served his Blue Lodge as Worshipful Master in 1985. He is a 33rd degree Scottish Rite Mason and is a past president of The Scottish Rite Foundation of Georgia and serves on the Scottish Rite Hospital Child Care Committee. He is also a member of the York Rite, which he presently serves as the Education Foundation member and is the recipient of the York Rite College Purple Cross and the Knight Commander of the Temple Award. He currently serves the Convent General KYCH as the Most Eminent Grand Master General. Concurrently, he also serves the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the USA as its Right Eminent Grand Treasurer.
Simmons became a member of Al Sihah Shriners in Macon, Georgia, in 1972 and served in several positions, including as Potentate in 1988. He currently serves as temple Treasurer. On the Imperial level, Simmons has served as the Imperial Captain of the Guard Aide, the Imperial Marshal’s Aide and the Imperial Potentate’s Aide. He has also served on the Imperial Dispensation and Charters, Imperial Distinguished Guest Registration, the Imperial East-West Shrine Game® and Donor Relations Committees.
While on the Board of Trustees for Shriners Hospitals, he served as a Liaison Officer for the Shriners Hospitals for Children in Boston, Greenville, Philadelphia, Salt Lake City, Shreveport, Springfield and St. Louis. He was Vice Chairman of the Medical Affairs, Affiliation Evaluation, Revenue Cycle, and Corporate Compliance Committees. He also served as Chairman of the Hospital Regulations; Salaries, Personnel, and Retirement; Clinical and Basic Research; Information Services; Legal Affairs; Follow-up Clinics/Telehealth; and the Masonic Relation Committees. He was also a member of the Task Force for Shriners Hospitals for Children.
Simmons formed a Day Light Masonic Lodge and served as its first Master in 2007. In 2009, he also served as District Twelve Masonic Master. In the Grand Lodge of Georgia, he has served as the Most Worshipful Grand Master, the Grand Orator, Chairman of the Masonic Home Endowment, and is presently serving as Grand Treasurer. He has also served as Venerable Master of the Lodge of Perfection. Simmons received the Honorary Legion of Honor from DeMolay International, and has served on the degree team for this award.
Simmons was born in Jeffersonville, Georgia, but soon moved with his family to Centerville, Georgia, and later Unadilla, Georgia. Upon graduation from high school, he joined the United States Air Force and traveled throughout Georgia, Texas, Michigan, Greece and Vietnam. During the first part of his military career, he served as a flight engineer. He received many honors and distinctions during his service, including “Best Flight Engineer Award” from the Air Training Command, the Air Force Commendation Medal, Joint Services Commendation Medal and the Outstanding Unit Award. He retired in 1981 as a maintenance superintendent and began a civil service career at Robins Air Base in Warner Robins, Georgia. In 1990, he received the “Point of Light Award” for outstanding community service from President George H. W. Bush.
Bobby and his wife, Nancy, are active members of Bonaire Methodist Church, where he has served on the administrative board and finance committee. They are volunteers at the Methodist Children’s Home. He and his wife have three children: Jeffery (and his wife, Rebecca), Teresa (and her husband, Tony), and David (and his wife, Monica). They also have five grandchildren: James, Rob, Roman, Keilah and T.J.