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

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

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

Honorable Karen Arnold-Burger
Chief Judge 2017-Present
Judge of the Court of Appeals 2011-2017

Hon Karen Arnold-Burger Karen Arnold-Burger is a fourth generation Kansan. She was born in Kansas City, Kansas in 1957 and graduated from Shawnee Mission North High School in 1975. Following high school, she attended Johnson County Community College for one year before beginning her undergraduate studies at the University of Kansas. Just two and a half years later she graduated with distinction earning degrees in Political Science, Psychology and Personnel Administration. While at KU, she was inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa honor society and was awarded the Sunflower State Award for the outstanding woman majoring in political science. She received her law degree from the University of Kansas in August 1981.

Judge Arnold-Burger served as First Assistant City Attorney for the City of Overland Park before accepting a position as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Kansas City, Kansas. She was appointed to the Overland Park Municipal Court in 1991, and was appointed Presiding Judge of that court in 1996. Governor Mark Parkinson appointed her to the Court of Appeals on January 6, 2011. The Supreme Court appointed her chief judge of the Court of Appeals for a term that began January 9, 2017.

Judge Arnold-Burger has always been a leader in her profession. She served as President of the Johnson County Bar Association, the Kansas Municipal Judges Association, and the Earl E. O'Connor Inn of Court. She has served on the Executive Board of the NCSCJ, a section within the Judicial Division of the American Bar Association and on the Board of Governors of the University of Kansas School of Law. She has been an adjunct faculty member at the National Judicial College since 2000, and was elected by her fellow faculty members to serve on the Faculty Council beginning in 2010. She is a graduate of the Institute for Faculty Excellence in Judicial Education at the University of Memphis and is a frequent presenter at judicial education programs nationwide. In 2006, she was awarded the Justinian Award for Professional Excellence by the Johnson County Bar Association. The award is given annually to an attorney who exemplifies integrity, service to the community, and service to the legal profession. In 2015, she was awarded the Burnham "Hod" Greeley Award by the American Bar Association. The award was given in recognition of her significant and positive impact on public understanding of the role of the judiciary in a democratic society and its importance to the Rule of Law.

She has also been a leader in her community. She has served on the boards of United Community Services, Safehome, a domestic violence shelter, and the Johnson County Drug and Alcoholism Council. Her tireless efforts spearheading a nationally recognized parental education program on the dangers of underage drinking earned her several local and international awards, including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s highest honor. The Johnson County Stop Underage Drinking Project, Inc., an organization she helped found, named a $1,000 scholarship in her honor. The scholarship is given annually to a teenager who is a positive alcohol and drug-free role model to his or her peers.

She and her husband have been married for 37 years and have three grown children and one grandchild.

Opinions authored by Judge Arnold-Burger:

  • 116921 -- Mainland Investment Group v. Smith
  • 116413 -- State v. Jamerson
  • 115763 -- Glaze v. J.K. Williams, LLC
  • 115259 -- State v. Hambright
  • 115487 -- Griffin v. Bruffett
  • 115184 -- Khalil-Alsalaami v. State
  • 114986 -- In re Marriage of Kidane & Araya
  • 114925 -- State v. Wilmer
  • 114605 -- Cincinnati Insurance Co. v. Karns
  • 114507 -- Nickelson v. Bell
  • 114285 -- T.H. and C.C. v. University of Kansas Hosp. Auth.
  • 114213 -- Woods v. State
  • 114065 -- State v. Webb
  • 113335 -- In re Guardianship & Conservatorship of Burrell
  • 113156 -- Watco Companies, Inc. v. Campbell
  • 112780 -- State v. Allen
  • 112768 -- Morton County Hospital v. Howell
  • 112765 -- Hilburn v. Enerpipe, Ltd.
  • 112000 - State v. Evans (dissenting)
  • 111797 -- State v. Mburu
  • 111749 -- State v. Heironimus
  • 111344 -- State v. Haskell
  • 112444 -- State v. Meyer
  • 111048 -- State ex rel. Drug Enforcement Unit v. $17,023 in U.S. Currency
  • 110599 -- Novy v. Woolsey Energy Corp
  • 110513 -- Dickerson v. St. Luke's South Hospital, Inc.
  • 110470 -- State v. Gordon
  • 110421 -- Verge v. State
  • 110250 -– State v. Wilburn
  • 110221 -– Chubb v. Sullivan
  • 110194 –- Greer v. Greer
  • 109650 -– State v. Riolo
  • 109297 -- Netahla v. Netahla
  • 108612 -- State v. Currie
  • 108476 -- State v. Smith
  • 108425 -- Lumry v. State
  • 108204 -- Pratt v. Kansas Dept. of Revenue
  • 108198 -- State v. Diaz
  • 107631 -- State v. Acevedo
  • 107456 -- In re Adoption of I.M.
  • 106846 -- MetLife Home Loans v. Hansen
  • 106673 -- Master Finance Co. of Texas v. Pollard
  • 106292 -- In re Marriage of Hutchison
  • 105949 -- Craig v. Val Energy, Inc.
  • 105922 -- In re Marriage of Taber
  • 105863 -- State v. Rickerson
  • 105585 -- In re C.E.
  • 105152 -- In re Marriage of Hohmann
  • 104995 -- City of Mulvane v. Henderson
  • 104748 -- Freebird, Inc. v. Cimarex Energy Co
  • 104651 -– State v. Key
  • 104457 -- Dexter v. Brake
  • 104342 -- Crone v. Nuss
  • 104222 -- State v. Perry-Coutcher
  • 104115 -- State v. Stevenson
  • 103969 -- State v. Long
  • 103566 -- State v. Flynn
  • 103038 -- McDaniel v. Southwestern Bell, Inc.