By Right Puissant Companion Bill Snyder
Deputy General Grand Master, Cryptic Masons International
Deputy General Grand Master, Cryptic Masons International
I formally announce my intention to be available for election to the Office of General Grand Master for the ensuing Triennial period of 2023-2026 at the 2023 Triennial in Branson, Missouri.
In this declaration, I am mindful of the commitments and promises that have been made over the past six (6) years by the leadership of both the General Grand Council and the General Grand Chapter. I am also mindful of the hopes of the leadership of other parts of the Masonic Family.
In 2017, Teko Foly was available for election to the Office of General Grand Scribe in the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons, International. After I was elected to the Office of General Grand Principal Conductor of the Work in the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons, International, my rediscovered “twin” and I found that we agreed on many subjects and objectives for the future of the Capitular Rite and the Cryptic Rite.
We both noted that this was going to require a nine-year commitment to action. We have remained convinced over the years that a UNITED York Rite is an imperative for the future growth and preservation of our Masonic traditions and ritualistic practices.
I ran for General Grand Principal Conductor of the Work with a vision of the General Grand Council working as an equal partner within the Masonic Family by serving as:
- A Clearinghouse for ideas and education in the history and legends of Freemasonry.
- A Resource for solutions for promoting and retaining membership, providing improvement of leadership and knowledge of the ritualistic intentions of Ancient Craft Masonry, and support for charitable endeavors of the Masonic family.
- A forum for sharing and celebrating the successes in Freemasonry.
- An active vehicle for support of Cryptic Masons Medical Research Foundation and taking its worthy purposes and research needs to the public for increased financial support.
Many of you have told me that we have made significant progress towards these goals.
Now, we need to enhance the overarching vision to revitalize the great principles and best practices of Ancient Craft Masonry, including the Solomonic Rule of Three for leadership, and the teachings of the Cryptic Rite as being foundational, not merely educational, or informational.
Many of you see the American York Rite as a unifying force for the good of Freemasonry throughout the world.
Nevertheless, there are a self-chosen few who persist in wanting to make Freemasonry more “efficient” for the advancement of personal agendas, and to eliminate most of Ancient Craft Masonry, in favor of a benign centralized Masonic regime.
I say that we need to be dedicated to making Freemasonry more EFFECTIVE, not efficient.
We must remain committed to leadership principles followed by our Masonic ancestors, particularly those originating and corresponding with the development of the American York Rite.
Towards this cause, I set forth these goals for the course of the General Grand Council and the Cryptic Rite for your consideration and support:
We will restore Relationships within our Masonic Family and unite the York Rite’s leadership in a commitment to our members.
We will assist in bringing the light of Freemasonry and the Cryptic Rite to the attention of the non-Masonic world as well as your members so that awareness of Freemasonry leads to a desire for affiliation or initiation in our causes, including our charities, through Recognition plans that promote our values.
We will focus on the Retention of your members. We will assist you in teaching our ancient landmarks to retain and energize your members.
We will shift the membership paradigm from expecting and accepting “suspensions” for nonpayment of dues as ordinary and normal towards recognition and involvement of your members. Many jurisdictions have experienced growth that exceeds the annual rate of deaths only to continue to be frustrated by the loss of members who “walk away” without stated cause.
There is no magical formula for Masonic membership gains. There is no 30-second elevator speech or advertising campaign that will yield an active and purposeful membership base. There is no written plan for the Masonic Family to work together. Yet, the Grand Geometrician of the Universe has set in motion the ways by which we can accomplish all these wonderful objectives.
It requires that Masons act as Masons and Companions who cherish the bonds of friendship.
It requires each element of the Masonic Family to stay true to their origins but recognize, as did King Athelstan in one of our many legends, that every part of the Masonic Family has a purpose and reason for its existence.
We need to recognize that the Master Mason degree is a gateway to the hallmarks stated in the Fellowcraft Degree and encourage our brother Freemasons to seek the paths alluded to by Hiram Abif as well as the other Ancient Masonic Legends.
During the next term, we will establish a Global Cryptic Partnership between Grand Councils in the United States and Grand Councils outside of the United States. We anticipate that the General Grand Chapter will act in coordination with us in this Partnership.
We are formulating a Strategic Plan for General Grand Council recognition awards and programs that extends into our local communities, increasing awareness of a positive image of Freemasonry, the York Rite, and our charitable and civic endeavors. This will require the engagement of all elements of the Masonic Family and our sponsored charities.
There will be a continued emphasis on Masonic and Cryptic Education, including the establishment of a Cryptic Educational Foundation as a 501[c]3 entity, supporting the cause of Masonic education at all levels and in all recognized jurisdictions.
It will be firmly established that the General Grand Council is dedicated to protecting, promoting, and preserving the Cryptic Rite and Ancient Craft Masonry.
It is to these tasks that I will encourage all of you to commit as I will be asking for your support and participation in the years ahead.
General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons, International
Deputy General Grand Master, elected term: 2020 – 2023
General Grand Principal Conductor of the Work, elected term: 2017 – 2020
General Grand Conductor of the Council, appointed 2017
Grand Council of Cryptic Masons of the State of Missouri
Most Illustrious Grand Master, Grand Council, 2015 – 2016
Grand Lecturer, Grand Council, 2016 – 2017
Grand Historian, Grand Council, 2017 – Present
Past Regional Deputy Grand Master
Past Regional Deputy Grand Lecturer
Past Illustrious Master, Independence Council No. 49
Past Illustrious Master, Kansas City Council No. 45
Grand Lodge of Missouri
Junior Warden, Missouri Lodge of Research; 2017, progressive line to WM and President of Missouri Lodge of Research Foundation
Chairman, Grand Lodge Correspondence Committee 2015 – 2022
Lodge Secretary, Independence Lodge No. 76, 2017 – 2018
Member, Grand Lodge Jurisprudence Committee 2012 – 2014
Grand Chaplain, 2011 – 2012; Grand Pursuivant, 2019-2020
Past Master, Independence Lodge No. 76, 2004 – 2005
Recipient, Harry S Truman Lodge Achievement Award, 2005
Past Attorney for Missouri Lodge of Research and Missouri Lodge of Research Foundation
Initiated, Passed and Raised, 1999
Grand York Rite of Missouri
Past High Priest, Independence Chapter No. 12 and Mt. Washington Chapter No. 142
Past Commander, Palestine Commandery No. 17
Recipient, Lewis & Clark Award for Outstanding Service to Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons (2006) and Grand Council (2007) of the State of Missouri
Chairman, Membership Committee, Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of the State of Missouri, 2017 – 2018
Member, Jurisprudence Committee, Grand Commandery of the State of Missouri, Grand Council of the State of Missouri, and Grand Chapter of the State of Missouri, 2017 – Present
33rd Degree, 2015
Past Venerable Master, Lodge of Perfection, Valley of Kansas City, Orient of Missouri, 2019;
Past Executive Secretary, Valley of Kansas City, 2015 – 2017
Past Wise Master, Chapter Rose Croix, Valley of Kansas City, 2009
Attorney for Kansas City, Missouri Scottish Rite Foundation, 2017 – 2019
Life Member, Scottish Rite Research Society
Founding Treasurer, Knights of St. Andrew, Kansas City Scottish Rite
Invitational Membership Activity
KYCH: Past Prior, Missouri Priory No. 17; 2020 – 2021
AMD: Member, Jurisprudence Committee, Grand Council, AMD; Past Sovereign, Santa Fe AMD Council, Kansas City
YRSCNA: Past Eminent Governor, Harry S Truman College; Recipient, Order of the Purple Cross; Member, Jurisprudence Committee, YRSCNA
MOA: Masonic Order of Athelstan: Past Grand Banner Bearer, Treasurer & Charter Past Grand Master, Court of Discovery (Missouri)
STOA: St. Thomas of Acon: Past Worthy Master, Immanuel Chapter
KMUSA: Grand Council of Knight Masons, USA:Grand Superintendent of Missouri, 2015-Present; Past Excellent Chief, Charlemagne Council; Recipient, Knight Commander of Zerubabbel
SRICF (Masonic Rosicrucians): IX Grade, Member of High Council
Red Cross of Constantine: Viceroy, Mary Conclave; elected Sovereign, 2024
Holy Royal Arch KTP: Officer, Our Lord’s, progressive line
Grand College of Rites: Chairman, Jurisprudence Committee 2016-2017; Knight Grand Cross 2018
Masonic Order of the Bath: Grand Keeper of the Bath Records, 2016 – Present
Attorney for Ararat Shrine, Kansas City, Missouri, 2015 – Present
Real Life Background:
Past County Attorney, Jackson County, Missouri, retired 2015
Special Consultant to the County Executive and County Counselor, 2015 – Present
Past Chief Deputy and Deputy County Attorney, 1987 – 2009
Past Chief Legal Counsel and Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Family Support Division, 1981 – 1987
Past President, Missouri Child Support Enforcement Association, 1984 – 1985
Widowed, stepfather of Alexandra
Past Owner and Vice-President, Snyder’s Supermarket, Inc., a grocery business, 1972 – 2004
Managing Member, Wm. Snyder Enterprises, LLC, a real estate, marketing and investment management entity, 2004 – Present
Past Advisor, Independence Plan for Neighborhood Councils, 1980 – 1984
Past President, Longview Community College Alumni Association
Past President, Student Association, University of Missouri-Kansas City, 1975-1978 & 1980
Past Chief Executive Assistant for 1 Boston Terrier (Kennedy) and 2 French Bulldogs (Bouvier & Honey Fitzgerald), all now waiting for me at the Rainbow Bridge