Robert Stephens was born in 1922 in Rosedale, Oklahoma. He moved to Purcell at an early age and spent the rest of his life in the quaint little town.
Stephens spent much of his life working for the Chickasaws, serving on the original committee that wrote the bylaws for the Chickasaw Nation in 1978. He was the first chairperson of both the Chickasaw Tribal Legislature and Gaming Commission. He also served as Chairman of the Oklahoma Gaming Association.
Stephens was very active with his tribe, but that didn’t keep him from being involved with the community of Purcell. He was a volunteer firefighter for over 20 years. He was very active in his parish, serving on the council of Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church. Even in the last years of his life, he was a part of the Kiwanis Meals on Wheels program in Purcell. He passed away in 2001.