Rod Jetton was born in De Soto, Missouri, to Bill and Judy Jetton. His father is a Southern Baptist minister who worked at churches in the panhandle of Texas and eastern New Mexico, and in many churches throughout Southeast Missouri.
Jetton graduated from Charleston High School in 1986. He attended Cape Girardeau public schools from 6th to 9th grade but transferred during his freshman year when his father became pastor of Southside Baptist Church in Charleston. He was a four-year letterman on the cross country and track teams. He set the school two mile record with a time of 9:52 . He enjoys music and singing and he played Sky Masterson in the school musical Guys and Dolls his senior year. He was also the senior class treasurer.
Jetton was awarded a college scholarship for cross country and track to attend Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Missouri. He graduated in May 1990, with a double major in history and political science. He was a 4-year letterman and captain of the cross country and track teams. His first interest in politics started in student government where he was elected to several offices ending his service as the Student Body President his senior year.
Jetton joined the United States Marine Corps and served as an Infantry Officer for four years. He was stationed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina and was involved in the Bosnia and Somalia operations. After finishing his tour in 1995, Rod received an honorable discharge.
After leaving the Marine Corps, Rod started Jetton James Real Estate Company with his father-in-law.
After college, Jetton joined Congressman Bill Emerson's campaign team as a field coordinator, and gained valuable experience in local grass roots politics. In 1996, he was elected to the Bollinger County Commission. He was the youngest County Commissioner in the state at that time . Bollinger County remained in the black during his term. Jetton held town hall meetings throughout the district and wrote a column in the newspaper.
In 2000, Jetton was elected to the Missouri House of Representatives where he has served since 2001. In his second term, he was chosen Speaker pro Tempore of the Missouri House. On January 5, 2005, he was sworn in as the 70th Speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives.
Jetton states that his priorities include improving the economic climate in the state, reform of a runaway legal system, ensuring quality medical care for all Missourians and giving every child an excellent education . He asserts that he is working to bring a more bi-partisan environment to the legislature, and has changed the legislative process to make sure everyone's voices are heard .
Jetton is a member of New Salem Baptist Church, Chamber of Commerce, Optimist Club, Christian Coalition, VFW Post 5900, Farm Bureau, National Rifle Association and National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB). The Bollinger County Chamber of Commerce gave him the "One Year VIP Business Achievement Award" in 1998 for his leadership and service to the community.
In 1988, Jetton married Cassie James. Together they are raising three children, Callie, Elaine and Will. Now that Rod is serving the public, she manages the appraisal company.