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TOPEKA—The 8th Judicial District Nominating Commission will convene December 21 to interview nominees to fill a vacancy for district magistrate judge in Geary County created by Judge Charles Zimmerman's January 11 retirement.

The 8th Judicial District is composed of Dickinson, Geary, Marion, and Morris counties.


The nominees to be interviewed are:

  • Florence Cornish, Junction City, attorney;

  • Amy Crawford, Salina, attorney;

  • James Jacobs, Junction City, retired funeral director;

  • Andrew King, Junction City, promotional salesperson;

  • Lawrence Palmer, Junction City, community corrections prevention coordinator;

  • Joy Ruffin, Junction City, legal assistant;

  • Calvin Schuette, Junction City, attorney; and

  • Steve Staker, Fredonia, attorney.

Interviews and appointment

The commission will convene to interview nominees at 9 a.m. Monday, December 21, at:

4-H and Senior Center
1025 S. Spring Valley Road
Junction City

Interviews are open to the public.

Anyone who attends in person must follow public health requirements set out in Supreme Court administrative order. These include answering questions at check-in about symptoms of or possible exposure to COVID-19, wearing a face mask while in the building, and maintaining 6 feet of physical distance from others.

Any person with a disability who requires accommodation to access the nominating commission meeting should notify the judicial branch ADA coordinator as early as possible, preferably 10 working days before the meeting date:

ADA Coordinator
TTY at 711

After interviewing the nominees, the commission will appoint a district magistrate judge.

Eligibility requirements

Kansas law requires that this district magistrate judge be:

  • a resident of Geary County at the time of taking office and while holding office;

  • a graduate of a high school, a secondary school, or the equivalent; and

  • either a lawyer admitted to practice in Kansas or able to pass an examination given by the Supreme Court to become certified within 18 months.

Term of office

After serving one year in office, the new magistrate judge must stand for a retention vote in the next general election to remain in the position. If retained, the incumbent will serve a four-year term.

Nominating commission

The 8th Judicial District Nominating Commission consists of Justice Caleb Stegall as the nonvoting chair; Kevin Harris, Abilene; Ashley Iverson, Alta Vista; Douglas Thompson, Chapman; Darrell Miller, Dwight; Keith Henry, Junction City; Daryl Enos and Edwin Wheeler Jr., Marion; and Eric Coffman, Milford.

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