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The Kansas Supreme Court
301 SW 10th Avenue
Topeka Kansas 66612-1507

Office of Judicial Administration
Telephone:
 785.296.2256
Fax:  785.296.7076
Email: info@kscourts.org

Appellate Clerk's Office
Telephone:
 785.296.3229
Fax:  785.296.1028
Email: appellateclerk@kscourts.org


News Releases Archive
Kansas Judicial Branch - News Releases for 2003

11/5/03 | 10/30/03(pm) | 10/30/03(am) | 10/10/03 | 9/2/03 | 8/25/03 | 8/1/03 | 6/24/03 | 6/16/03 | 6/5/03 | 6/4/03 | 6/2/03 | 5/14/03 | 4/11/03 | 4/7/03 | 3/27/03 | 3/26/03 | 3/14/03 | 2/5/03 | 1/13/03


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

For Immediate Release: November 5, 2003

The names of three persons were submitted to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius Tuesday as nominees for appointment to a vacancy on the state Court of Appeals that was created when Judge Carol A. Beier was elevated to the Supreme Court.

They include Nancy L. Caplinger, Topeka; Judge Patrick McAnany, Olathe; and David L. Snapp, Dodge City. Gov. Sebelius will have 60 days in which to make the appointment.

Caplinger is Appellate Coordinator in the U.S. Attorney's Office, a position she has held since 1999. Before that, she was an assistant U.S. Attorney since 1995. She began her legal career upon her graduation from the Washburn law school in 1985 by serving as Research Attorney to Supreme Court Justice Harold S. Herd and later as Law Clerk to U.S. District Judge Patrick Kelly, Wichita.

Upon leaving Judge Kelly's staff in 1989, she became an associate attorney in the Overland Park firm of Spencer, Fane, Britt & Browne, where she maintained a private practice until her appointment to the U.S. Attorney's office.

Judge McAnany is currently the chief judge of the one-county 10th Judicial District, which consists of Johnson County. Born in Sweetwater, Texas, he was graduated from Rockhurst College with a B.A. in Philosophy in 1965. He received a J.D. degree from the University of Missouri at Kansas City School of Law in 1968.

Judge McAnany practiced in the Kansas City firm of Miller & O'Laughlin from 1968 to 1969, when he left the firm to serve as assistant division attorney for the Mobil Oil Corporation in its Kansas City office. In 1973, he became a member of the McAnany, Van Cleave, & Phillips law firm in Kansas City, KS, and later was instrumental opening an office in Johnson County, where he practiced law until his appointment to the bench in 1995.

Snapp has been in private practice in Dodge City since 1981 when he joined Harry A. Waite, initially under the firm name of Minner & Waite, followed by Waite & Snapp. In 1995, he engaged in private practice with Michael A. Doll under the firm name of Waite, Snapp & Doll, where he currently practices.

He is a graduate of Kansas State University with a B.A. in philosphy, and of the Kansas University School of Law, where he received his law degree in 1980. Snapp has served as an assistant Ford County Attorney, a municipal court prosecutor for Dodge City, and as a district court judge pro term during his legal career.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 30, 2003

Hon. William B. Elliott has scheduled a hearing on the court-appointed receiver's Motion for Approval of Proposed Plan of Liquidation in the Brady Grain Inc. proceeding for 2 p.m. Monday in Norton County District Court.

Terry D. Criss, Receiver for Brady Grain, has asked Judge Elliott to approve a Liquidation Plan he has proposed and to direct him to obtain bids for services and bid procedures for the sale of commodities on hand and for a court order approving it.

The Receiver further is asking the judge to allow Leo Manz to remove the approximate 3,228 bushels of wheat which he stored in a bin at the Stuttgart facility.

A copy of the motion, the plan for liquidation, the notice of hearing and all related documents are being posted on a website set up for this proceeding by the Office of Judicial Administration.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 30, 2003

Chief Justice Kay McFarland today signed a Supreme Court order updating the statewide Child Support Guidelines, which are used as the basis to establish and modify the amount of child support ordered by Kansas judges.

Most changes to the Kansas Child Support Guidelines, which were last reviewed in 1998, are technical updates. The Child Support Schedules which identify the financial obligations of each parent include an average three percent increase over existing child support orders. The schedules also include a reduction in the child support obligation in order to account for the additional cost of each parent maintaining a home following the dissolution of their marriage.

Existing child support orders remain unchanged until the case comes before the court for a modification hearing. Today's order is effective January 1, 2004.

Other key changes to the child support guidelines include:

  • A reduction of between five and 15 percent in support is allowed for a nonresidential parent who has the children between 35 and 49 percent of the time. The new "parenting time adjustment" gives those parents who have the child a significant amount of the time but do not have shared custody the opportunity to petition for a reduction in their child support obligation to pay for additional expenses incurred by having the children more than the standard amount of time.
  • The judge may consider an agreement between the parents to support the child past the child's 18th birthday when making an order for current child support. This will allow the judge to consider a reduction in child support for a young child or teenager if a parent pays into a trust fund to pay for the child's college or other expenses after reaching the age of majority.

  • Parents may take advantage of health insurance coverage even if that coverage is provided by a step-parent. Currently, the court may only consider insurance provided by a parent even though most insurance companies allow coverage for stepchildren.

The Supreme Court order followed a two-year study of the existing rules by the Court's Child Support Guidelines Advisory Committee, which is chaired by Shawnee County District Judge Nancy Parrish. The advisory committee conducted a series of public hearings on the guidelines and accepted public comment through surveys and web-based technology.

Questions about the guidelines should be directed to the Office of Judicial Administration at (785) 296-2256 or by submitting an e-mail to KansasCSG@kscourts.org. In addition, the guidelines and a "strikeover" version of them are available on the Kansas Judicial Branch website at www.kscourts.org.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

October 10, 2003

The names of 30 persons were submitted for consideration by the noon Friday deadline as nominees to fill a vacancy created on the Court of Appeals by the elevation of Judge Carol A. Beier to the Supreme Court.

Justice Beier was sworn in as a member of the Supreme Court on September 5.

The Supreme Court Nominating Commission will review the applications and conduct interviews November 3 and 4, with the names of three on the list to be submitted to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius on November 4 for appointment.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

September 2, 2003

The Supreme Court will meet in special session Friday, September 5, at 1:30 p.m. for the swearing-in ceremony of Justice-designee Carol A. Beier (pronounced Byer).

Judge Beier was appointed to the Court to fill a vacancy created by the June 6 retirement of Justice Bob Abbott. She will be presented to the Supreme Court by Wichita attorney Gaye B. Tibbets, who is with the Wichita firm of Hite, Fanning & Honeyman, L.L.P. A reception will follow in the atrium of the Judicial Center.

Judge Beier has been a member of the Court of Appeals since February 2000. Before that, she spent the 11 years before joining the Court at Foulston & Siefkin, L.L.P., in Wichita, where her trial and appellate practice focused on commercial disputes and health care law. Judge Beier also spent one year teaching at the University of Kansas School of Law.

Prior to joining Foulston & Siefkin, Judge Beier practiced in Washington, D.C., first as a staff attorney at the National Women's Law Center through a fellowship program of the Georgetown Law Center and then at Arent, Fox, Kintner, Plotkin & Kahn. Immediately after law school graduation, Judge Beier had served as a clerk to then Judge James K. Logan of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit.

Judge Beier is married to Richard W. Green and has three children.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

August 25, 2003

Three district court judges today were nominated for appointment to the Kansas Court of Appeals to succeed Judge David S. Knudson, who has retired. They include Judges Stephen D. Hill, Paola, Patrick D. McAnany, Overland Park, and David L. Stutzman, Manhattan.

Gov. Kathleen Sebelius will have 60 days in which to make an appointment.

Judge Hill has been a district judge since 1981 and has been chief judge of the Sixth Judicial District since 1990. He is a 1972 graduate of the University of Kansas with a BS degree in English and a 1975 graduate of the Washburn University School of Law.

Immediately after graduation from law school, he practiced law in Mound City and was assistant Miami County Attorney in Paola. He was appointed Linn County Attorney and then was elected to the position in 1976. He regularly sits with the Court of Appeals and was nominated for appointment to that court in 2000.

Judge McAnany is currently the chief judge of the one-county 10th Judicial District, which consists of Johnson County. Born in Sweetwater, Texas, he was graduated from Rockhurst College with a B.A. in Philosophy in 1965. He received a J.D. degree from the University of Missouri at Kansas City School of Law in 1968.

Judge McAnany practiced in the Kansas City firm of Miller & O'Laughlin from 1968 to 1969, when he left the firm to serve as assistant division attorney for the Mobile Oil Corporation in its Kansas City office. In 1973, he became a member of the McAnany, Van Cleave, & Phillips law firm in Kansas City, KS, and later was instrumental opening an office in Johnson County, where he practiced law until his appointment to the bench in 1995.

During his years on the District Court, Judge McAnany served as a judge on the juvenile docket and then as a judge on the civil docket, where he presently presides. He has been chief judge since 2000.

Judge Stutzman has been a district court judge since January 24, 1997, when he left the Manhattan law firm of Arthur, Green, Arthur and Condeman following nearly 15 years with that law office. Recently, the judge presided over the case of Kansas State University v. Morris Communications (WIBW) on broadcasting rights to KSU football. The judge entered an order in favor of WIBW's right to continue its solo broadcasts; however, within a week of the judgment, KSU and WIBW announced a complete settlement of all issues in the case, including abandonment of an appeal.

Judge Stutzman obtained a BS degree with merit from the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, MD, and went on to serve in the Navy as the Repair Division Officer and Damage Control Assistant on the guided missile frigate USS Brooke. Following his discharge from the Navy, Judge Stutzman completed his law degree at the University of Kansas and was graduated fourth in his class in 1982.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 1, 2003

Twenty-eight persons have applied to fill a vacancy on the Court of Appeals being created by the retirement today of Judge David S. Knudson.

The Supreme Court Nominating Commission, which consists of a lawyer and a non-lawyer from each congressional district plus an attorney member elected statewide, will interview nominees August 21 and 22. The names of three persons will be submitted to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius on August 25. She will have 60 days in which to make an appointment to the 11-member intermediate appellate court.

I have attached a list of the applicants.

APPLICANTS - JUDGE KNUDSON, POSITION #1

NAME OCCUPATION CITY OF RESIDENCE
Bryce A. Abbott Judge Wichita, Kansas
Mary Beth Blake Lawyer Lake Quivira, Kansas
Michael B. Buser Lawyer Overland Park, Kansas
Douglas Paul Campbell Lawyer Ulysses, Kansas
Nancy Landis Caplinger Lawyer Topeka, Kansas
Martha J. Coffman Lawyer Lawrence, Kansas
Henry Reid Cox Lawyer Shawnee, Kansas
Rebecca W. Crotty Judge Garden City, Kansas
Patricia Macke Dick Judge Hutchinson, Kansas
Sharon Louise Dickgrafe Lawyer Wichita, Kansas
Stephen Douglas Hill Judge Paola, Kansas
Steven Logan Hornbaker Judge Junction City, Kansas
Calvin Joseph Karlin Lawyer Lawrence, Kansas
Glenn Ivan Kerbs Lawyer Dodge City, Kansas
Rick Kittel Lawyer Lawrence, Kansas
Patrick D. McAnany Judge Overland Park, Kansas
Otis Warren Morrow Lawyer Arkansas City, Kansas
Brandon L. Myers Lawyer Auburn, Kansas
Steven J. Obermeier Lawyer Olathe, Kansas
Jonathan Michael Paretsky Lawyer Lawrence, Kansas
Deborah June Purce Lawyer Topeka, Kansas
Kim R. Schroeder Judge Hugoton, Kansas
David H. Snapp Lawyer Dodge City, Kansas
Jeffrey S. Southard Lawyer Lawrence, Kansas
H. David Starkey Lawyer Colby, Kansas
David L. Stutzman Judge Manhattan, Kansas
Brenda S. Watkins Lawyer Olathe, Kansas
Jackie Neil Williams Lawyer Wichita, Kansas

Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 24, 2003

Veteran Court of Appeals Judge David S. Knudson has announced his retirement from the court after a judicial career spanning more than two decades. The retirement is effective August 1, 2003.

Judge Knudson was appointed to the Court of Appeals in 1995, after having served as a judge of Saline County District Court since 1981, which included 12 years as chief judge of the 28th Judicial District, which consists of Saline and Ottawa counties.

A native of Goodland, Judge Knudson was graduated from the Washburn University School of Law in 1966 and began his legal career as an assistant city attorney in Wichita. From 1967 to 1981, he practiced law in Salina, including a two-year term as Saline County attorney.

In addition to his judicial duties, Judge Knudson is a member of the Kansas Continuing Legal Education Commission, chair of the Judicial Council's Advisory Committee for Pattern Instructions and has served as an adjunct instructor at the University of Kansas Law School.

He is a member of the Topeka, Kansas, Colorado, and American Bar Associations, and the American Judicature Society. He and his wife, Roberta, reside in Topeka.

* * *

The Supreme Court Nominating Commission will soon convene to consider nominees to be submitted to the Governor to fill the vacancy on the Court of Appeals created by the retirement of Judge David S. Knudson. Nomination forms are available from the clerk of any district court or from the Clerk of the Appellate Courts. An original and nine copies of the nomination form must be received in the Office of the Clerk of the Appellate Courts no later than noon, Thursday, July 31, 2003. Fax filings will not be accepted.

_________________________
Carol G. Green, Clerk
Kansas Appellate Courts
________________________
Richard C. Hite, Chairman
Nominating Commission

Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

For Release June 16, 2003:

Wichita attorney Richard D. Greene will be sworn in as a member of the Court of Appeals during a special session of the Court of Appeals Wednesday at 2 p.m. in the Kansas Judicial Center, 301 W. 10th, in Topeka.

Greene was appointed to fill a vacancy on the Court of Appeals that was created by the appointment of Justice Robert L. Gernon to the Supreme Court. Chief Judge Gary W. Rulon will preside over Wednesday's ceremony. A reception in the atrium of the Judicial Center will follow the administration of the oath of office.

Greene has been in the private practice of law with the Wichita firm of Morris, Laing, Evans, Brock & Kennedy since his graduation from law school from Southern Methodist University School of Law in 1975. Greene received his undergraduate degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia, where he received a BS degree in Business Administration.

During his practice with Morris Laing he has been engaged exclusively in civil litigation in state and federal courts and some administrative agencies. Since 1983, he has been national litigation counsel to the EDO Corporation in New York and has handled major litigation for that corporation throughout the country.

In Kansas, he has concentrated his practice on commercial and oil and gas litigation. In recent years, his practice has been increasingly devoted to litigation of sales and property tax disputes on behalf the owners of major industrial and utility properties.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

For Release June 5, 2003:

Susan Sittenauer, a Civil and Criminal Rights Teacher at Seaman High School since 1984, has been named the 2003 national Law-Related Education Teacher of the Year by the American Lawyers Auxiliary, a national network of lawyers' spouses affiliated with the American Bar Assn.

Mrs. Sittenauer will receive the award, as well as a check for $1,000, at the ABA's annual meeting August 9th in San Francisco. She was nominated for the award by the Kansas Citizen and Law Education project, a joint effort of the Kansas Supreme Court and Kansas Bar Assn. to initiate and develop law-related education in the state's school system.

Chief Justice Kay McFarland said Mrs. Sittenauer exemplifies a growing cadre of Kansas school teachers who are teaching students about the rule of law and increasing their understanding of the institutions of American constitutional democracy and the fundamental principles and values on which they are founded.

Mrs. Sittenauer, a veteran of 17 years at Seaman High initiated a course that became so well-received that the USD 345 Board of Education has expanded it into a multi-course curriculum, which has grown from approximately 40 students to 130 who sign up for one of her now five law-related courses she teaches each year.

Besides teaching about the criminal justice system, Mrs. Sittenauer is chair of the Seaman Social Studies Department and the coordinator of both the Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) and the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) programs.

Among her law-related education teaching strategies, she emphasizes essential concepts of democracy, justice, equality, liberty, and the law. "The curriculum fosters the knowledge, skills, and values students need to become positive members of society," she said. "I carefully choose materials that motivate students' interest and cause them to think critically, problem solve and communicate effectively," she explained.

To accomplish her teaching goals while maintaining high student interest, Mrs. Sittenauer uses hands-on, interactive instructional strategies, which include a host of simulations, such as mock trials, mock DUI-caused accidents staged by local law enforcement, role plays of school boards confronted with violence in their schools, freedom of speech exercises and many more that captivate her students' attention.

She also co-created the practice of all government teachers at Seaman requiring seniors in government classes to complete a minimum of six community service hours per semester. The hours can be achieved through volunteerism by any one of a variety of ways, including such things as volunteering to work on a political campaign, serving dinner at a homeless shelter, voter registration drives, building a house for Habitat for Humanity and others.

Mrs. Sittenauer and her family will travel to San Francisco as guests of the American Bar Assn. and the Kansas Bar Foundation, which is defraying travel expenses. The award is part of a 40-year effort of the American Lawyers Auxiliary in its support of public education, citizenship awareness, and various public service programs. Recognizing the vital role that teachers play in law-related education, the Auxiliary recognizes one teacher each year who has made outstanding contributions to law- related education and whose programs have:

  • furthered the understanding of the role of the courts, law enforcement agencies and the legal profession in society;
  • helped students recognize their duties as well as their rights;
  • encouraged effective law-related education programs in their schools and communities;
  • And increased communication between students, educators, and those involved professionally in the legal profession.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

June 4, 2003

The Supreme Court has invited public comment on several changes to the Kansas Child Support Enforcement Guidelines that have been recommended in a Final Draft Report by the Court's Child Support Guidelines Advisory Committee.

Comments on the report should be received by August 5, 2003, after which the Court will take them under advisement with a decision expected this fall. Comments may be mailed to: Mark Gleeson Office of Judicial Administration 301 SW 10th Street Topeka, KS 66612

The complete report and draft guidelines have been posted at the Court's website: www.kscourts org. In addition, copies are being sent to the offices of the clerk of the district court in each county, as well as the county libraries.

The proposed changes to the guidelines include, among others, an average 3 percent increase in the schedules for all incomes; an adjustment up to 15 percent for nonresidential parents who have their children between 35 and 50 percent of the time; and changes to the tax section.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

For Immediate Release: June 2, 2002

The Supreme Court Nominating Commission today submitted the names of three persons to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius for appointment to the Supreme Court to fill a vacancy on the court created by the June 6 retirement of Justice Bob Abbott.

Nominees include Judge Carol A. Beier, of the Kansas Court of Appeals, and Judges Steve A. Leben and Patrick D. McAnany, both of Johnson County Dsistrict Court.

Judge Beier has served on the Court of Appeals since February 2000. A native of Kansas City, KS, she attended Benedictine College in Atchison and the University of Kansas, where she obtained a B.S. in Journalism in 1981. She also received her law degree from KU, graduating in 1985. She was an honor graduate of both programs. She spent 11 years before joining the Court of Appeals at Foulston & Siefkin, LLP, in Wichita, where her trial and appellate practice focused on commercial disputes and health care law.

Judge Beier also spent one year teaching at the University of Kansas School of Law. Prior to joining Foulston & Siefkin, Judge Beier practiced in Washington DC, first as a staff attorney at the National Women's Law Center through a fellowship program of the Georgetown Law Center, and then at Arent, Fox, Kintner, Plotkin & Kahn.

Judge Leben has served as a Johnson County District Court judge since September 1993. From 1993 until recently, he was a member of the Civil Department and handled both civil and domestic relations matters. Recently, he has taken over a docket that includes both civil and criminal cases.

Born in Eureka, Judge Leben received both his undergraduate and his law degree from the University of Kansas, where he received a B.S. with distinction in 1978, and a J.D. with honors in 1982. Upon graduation from law school, Judge Leben joined the firm of Stinson, Mag & Fizzell, beginning in the Kansas City, MO, office in 1982 and moving to the firm's Overland Park office when it opened in 1984. He left the firm in 1988 to become a sole practitioner, where he concentrated on commercial litigation, personal injury, worker's compensation cases, and administrative proceedings until his appointment to the bench in 1993.

Judge McAnany is currently the chief judge of the one-county 10th Judicial District, which consists of Johnson County. Born in Streetwater, Texas, he was graduated from Rockhurst College with a B.A. in Philosophy in 1965. He received a J.D. degree from the University of Missouri at Kansas City School of Law in 1968.

Judge McAnany practiced in the Kansas City firm of Miller & O'Laughlin from 1968 to 1969, when he left the firm to serve as assistant division attorney for the Mobile Oil Corporation in its Kansas City office. In 1973, he became a member of the McAnany, Van Cleave, & Phillips law firm in Kansas City, KS, and later was instrumental opening an office in Johnson County, where he practiced law until his appointment to the bench in 1995.

During his years on the District Court, Judge McAnany served as a judge on the juvenile docket and then as a judge on the civil docket, where he presently presides. He has been chief judge since 2000.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For more information,
Contact Ron Keefover, 296-4872
or Carol Green, 296-3229

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 14, 2003

The names of 24 persons to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court being created by the June 6, 2003, retirement of Justice Bob Abbott were released today by the Supreme Court Nominating Commission.

The Commission will conduct interviews May 30 and 31 with the names of three nominees for submitted to the governor June 2. The governor will then have 60 days to make the appointment.

List of the names that have been submitted


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 11, 2003

Names of suggested nominees will be accepted until May 13 to fill the vacancy on the state Supreme Court that will be created by the retirement June 6, 2003, of Justice Bob Abbott.

Notices soliciting the names of nominees have been sent to the state's 9,600 active registered attorneys. Nominations also are being accepted from the public on forms available in each of the state's 105 offices of Clerk of the District Court, as well as from the Clerk of the Appellate Courts.

Interviews of suggested nominees will be conducted by the Supreme Court Nominating Commission May 30 and 31 in Topeka. The nominating commission will submit the names of three persons on June 2 to the governor for appointment. The governor will then have 60 days to make the appointment.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 7, 2003

Supreme Court Justice Bob Abbott today announced his retirement following 26 years service on the appellate courts and 17 years in private practice prior to that. The retirement is effective June 6.

Justice Abbott was the first person appointed to the Court of Appeals when it was re-established effective January 10, 1977, and served with that court until his appointment to the Supreme Court in 1990. During his tenure on the Court of Appeals, Justice Abbott served as Chief Judge from 1985 until his Supreme Court appointment. While chief judge of the Court of Appeals, he supervised its expansion from seven to 10 members. He authored in excess of 2,000 Court of Appeals and Supreme Court decisions and participated in the decision of thousands more.

Justice Abbott was born in Hanston, KS. He received an AA degree from Dodge City Junior College in 1952, a BS degree from Emporia State University in 1956, a JD degree from the Washburn University School of Law in 1960, and a Master of Law Degree from the University of Virginia in 1986.

While in law school, he was a member of the Law Review Board that founded the Washburn Law Journal, served as president of Delta Theta Phi law fraternity, and was a recipient of its key for excellence in scholarship. He graduated second in his law school class.

Justice Abbott engaged in private practice in Junction City from November 1960 until his appointment to the Court of Appeals.

Justice Abbott also served as an adjunct professor at the Washburn law school, teaching professional responsibility from 1978 through 1988. He has received the Distinguished Alumnus Citation from Dodge City Community College, Emporia State University, and Washburn University law school. He is an admittee to the Dodge City Community College Hall of Fame and has received the Smiling Bull award from the Leavenworth County Bar Association. While practicing law, he was named the Junction City and the State of Kansas Outstanding Young Man.

He lettered in four sports in high school and played college football and basketball. Justice Abbott and his wife, the former Kaye Cummings, have four children, Bryce, Bren, Kyle Ann, and Jayme.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
Contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 27, 2003

Chief Justice Kay McFarland today announced the appointment of Justice Marla J. Luckert to the Kansas Children's Cabinet.

The Cabinet consists of 15 appointees from each of the three branches of government. Justice Luckert succeeds Justice Edward Larson, who has retired from the Court.

The Kansas Children's Cabinet was formed by the 1999 Legislative session and designed to improve the health and well-being of children and youth in the state of Kansas. The Cabinet has been directed by the statute to undertake these four overarching responsibilities:

  • Advising the Governor and the legislature regarding the uses of the moneys credited to the Children's Initiatives Fund
  • Evaluating programs which utilize Children's Initiatives Fund moneys
  • Assisting the Governor in developing and implementing a coordinated, comprehensive delivery system to serve children and families of Kansas
  • Supporting the prevention of child abuse and neglect through the Children's Trust Fund.

Prior to Justice Luckert's appointment to the Supreme Court in January, she was chief judge of Shawnee County District Court, where she had been a judge since 1992.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
Contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 26, 2003

The names of three attorneys were submitted to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius today as nominees to fill a vacancy on the Shawnee County District Court that was created when former Chief Judge Marla Luckert was appointed as a justice of the Supreme Court.

Nominees include Jill A. Michaux, Susana L. Valdovinos, and Jean M. Schmidt. The governor will have 30 days from today in which to make the appointment. The three are among 17 persons who submitted their names to the Shawnee County Third Judicial District Nominating Commission. The commission conducted interviews of the 17 Tuesday.

Michaux has been in the private practice of law for 21 years in the firm of Neis & Michaux, P.A. During her practice, she has served as a judge of the Rossville Municipal Court and as a pro tem judge in Shawnee County District Court. She is a 1982 graduate of the Washburn University School of Law and a 1977 graduate of the University of Kansas.

Schmidt is presently senior assistant district attorney in the family law division of the Shawnee County district attorney's office. Prior to joining the district attorney's office in 2001, she worked in the Kansas Insurance Department where she was director of the department's fraud unit for three years. Schmidt began her legal career with the Legal Aid Society in 1982 and has been in various public attorney positions since then. She is a 1982 graduate of the Washburn University School of Law and a 1977 graduate of Bethel College, North Newton.

Valdovinos is currently associate director of the Office of Affirmative Action for Kansas State University, a position she has held since 2000. From 1993 to 2000, she served as assistant county counselor in Shawnee County and before that taught law at various law schools. She is a 1988 graduate of the Washburn University School of Law and a 1982 graduate of the University of Kansas, where she received a MA degree in human development and family life. She is a 1980 graduate of the National University of Mexico, Mexico City, Mexico.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For More Information,
Contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 14, 2003

The Supreme Court Nominating Commission today submitted the names of three persons to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius for appointment to the Kansas Court of Appeals to fill a vacancy on the court created by the appointment of Judge Robert L. Gernon to the Kansas Supreme Court.

Nominees include Wichita attorney Richard D. Greene, Colby attorney H. David Starkey, and Riley County District Judge David L. Stutzman.

The governor on Wednesday appointed Sedgwick County District Judge Thomas Malone to the Court of Appeals to fill a vacancy created by the expansion of the Court from 10 to 11 members.

Starkey and Stutzman were nominated for the vacancy that Malone was appointed to fill and Greene's name was added to the nominations for the vacancy created by Gernon's elevation to the Supreme Court. The governor will have 60 days in which to make the appointment.

Judge Stutzman has been a district court judge since January 24, 1997, when he left the Manhattan law firm of Arthur, Green, Arthur and Condeman following nearly 15 years with that law office. Recently, the judge presided over the case of Kansas State University v. Morris Communications (WIBW) on broadcasting rights to KSU football. The judge entered an order in favor of WIBW's right to continue its solo broadcasts; however, within a week of the judgment, KSU and WIBW announced a complete settlement of all issues in the case, including abandonment of an appeal.

Judge Stutzman obtained a BS degree with merit from the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, MD, and went on to serve in the Navy as the Repair Division Officer and Damage Control Assistant on the guided missile frigate USS Brooke. Following his discharge from the Navy, Judge Stutzman completed his law degree at the University of Kansas and was graduated fourth in his class in 1982.

Starkey began his legal career in 1975, first as an associate in a one-person firm in Colby, and then as an associate in the firm of Lowe & Willoughby in Colby. He became a partner in January 1976 and has been a continuous member of that firm since then. The firm continues today under the name of Starkey & Gatz, L.L.P.

Starkey served as county attorney from 1977-1979, and still is appointed occasionally as a special prosecutor in state and municipal court. He also has been retained as criminal defense counsel and has accepted appointments for indigents in criminal, juvenile, and child in need of care cases. General civil litigation always has been a significant part of a wide-ranging private law practice.

He was graduated cum laude from Kansas State University in 1969 and from the Washburn University law school in 1974, where he was assistant comments editor of the Washburn Law Journal.

Greene has been in the private practice of law with the Wichita firm of Morris, Laing, Evans, Brock & Kennedy since his graduation from law school from Southern Methodist University School of Law in 1975. Greene received his undergraduate degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia, where he received a BS degree in Business Administration.

During his practice with Morris Laing he has been engaged exclusively in civil litigation in state and federal courts and some administrative agencies. Since 1983, he has been national litigation counsel to the EDO Corporation in New York and has handled major litigation for that corporation throughout the country.

In Kansas, he has concentrated his practice on commercial and oil and gas litigation. In recent years, his practice has been increasingly devoted to litigation of sales and property tax disputes on behalf the owners of major industrial and utility properties.


TO: Statehouse Media
FROM: Ron Keefover
RE: Court of Appeals Nominees

The Supreme Court Nominating Commission today submitted the names of three persons to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius for appointment to the Kansas Court of Appeals to fill a vacancy on the court created by the court's expansion from 10 members to 11.

Nominees include Sedgwick County District Judge Thomas E. Malone, Riley County District Judge David L. Stutzman, and H. David Starkey, a Colby attorney.

The governor will have 60 days in which to make an appointment to the court. Once the appointment is made, the commission is scheduled to reconvene to submit the names of a second panel, this one to fill a vacancy on the court created by the appointment of Hon. Robert L. Gernon to the Supreme Court.

Judge Malone has been on the Sedgwick County bench since January 1991 to present. Before that, he was in private practice in the Wichita law firm of Redmond, Redmond & Nazar. While on the district court, Judge Malone has presided over more than 250 jury trials and hundreds of bench trials. In 1992, he presided over one of the state's first "hard 40" criminal cases, and the following year he presided over the first case in Kansas to allow introduction of DNA/PCR evidence. He has served on numerous hearing panels of the Court of Appeals by assignment of the Supreme Court.

Judge Malone received his law degree with honors from the Washburn University law school in 1979, and before that was graduated summa cum laude from Kansas Newman College. He is the author of numerous scholarly legal articles and served as an adjunct faculty member at Kansas Newman College from 1979 to 1987.

Judge Stutzman has been a district court judge since January 24, 1997, when he left the Manhattan law firm of Arthur, Green, Arthur and Condeman following nearly 15 years with that law office. Recently, the judge presided over the case of Kansas State University v. Morris Communications (WIBW) on broadcasting rights to KSU football. The judge entered an order in favor of WIBW's right to continue its solo broadcasts; however, within a week of the judgment, KSU and WIBW announced a complete settlement of all issues in the case, including abandonment of an appeal.

Judge Stutzman obtained a BS degree with merit from the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, MD, and went on to serve in the Navy as the Repair Division Officer and Damage Control Assistant on the guided missile frigate USS Brooke. Following his discharge from the Navy, Judge Stutzman completed his law degree at the University of Kansas and was graduated fourth in his class in 1982.

Starkey began his legal career in 1975, first as an associate in a one-person firm in Colby, and then as an associate in the firm of Lowe & Willoughby in Colby. He became a partner in January 1976 and has been a continuous member of that firm since then. The firm continues today under the name of Starkey & Gatz, L.L.P.

Starkey served as county attorney from 1977-1979, and still is appointed occasionally as a special prosecutor in state and municipal court. He also has been retained as criminal defense counsel and has accepted appointments for indigents in criminal, juvenile, and child in need of care cases. General civil litigation always has been a significant part of a wide-ranging private law practice.

He was graduated cum laude from Kansas State University in 1969 and from the Washburn University law school in 1974, where he was assistant comments editor of the Washburn Law Journal.


Office of Judicial Administration
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1507
(785) 296-2256

For more information,
contact Ron Keefover
Education-Information Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:        January 13, 2003

The names of 46 nominees for the vacancies on the Kansas Court of Appeals created by the appointment of Judge Robert L. Gernon to the Supreme Court and to fill a newly created position on the Court were released today by the Supreme Court Nominating Commission.

The Commission will conduct interviews February 3-4 with the names of three nominees for the first panel being submitted to the governor soon after the interviews are concluded. The Legislature expanded the Court of Appeals from 10 to 11 members during the 2001 session, but made it effective January 13, 2003. Judge Gernon was appointed to the Supreme Court on December 4 and will take oath of office today.