Local Lawmaker Picks Up a Side Job: Co-Owner of The River Bandits

Dec 8, 2016

State Senator Roby Smith announces his co-ownership with managing partner Dave Heller at a press conference.
Credit Sam Dunklau / WVIK News

An Iowa State Senator now co-owns The Quad Cities River Bandits. On Thursday, the team's managing partner, Dave Heller, announced Roby Smith is replacing Bob Herrfeldt as co-owner of the minor league franchise.

Smith, a Michigan native, has a business degree. He lives in Davenport and has been serving in the State Senate for six years. 

Smith plans to add attractions to Modern Woodmen Park and hopes attendance increases next season.

"It's something that I want to give back to the community. And as a co-owner, we want to continue to have a premier source of family-affordable entertainment here in the Quad Cities, especially for the hardworking people of the Quad Cities."

Dave Heller says he's worked closely with Smith during the past few years. And their shared love of the Quad Cities makes Smith an ideal co-owner.

"He is deeply embedded in the fabric of this community. His expertise, his experience, his knowledge of the  community makes us better. I really believe steel sharpens steel, and I think that's how Roby is gonna take us to another level."

Heller approached Smith about co-ownership after learning Herrfeldt will manage a team in Colorado. Since 2008, Heller has co-owned The Quad Cities River Bandits. He also has stakes in three other minor league teams.