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TOPEKA—The 1st Judicial District Nominating Commission will convene December 11 to interview nominees to fill a district judge vacancy in Atchison County created by Judge Robert Bednar's January 11 retirement.

The 1st Judicial District is composed of Atchison and Leavenworth counties.

Public interviews

The nominating commission will convene at 8:30 a.m. Friday, December 11, with interviews beginning at 9 a.m., at:

Leavenworth Justice Center
601 S. 3rd St.
Leavenworth

Interviews are open to the public. The commission will announce if it changes how it will meet because of pandemic concerns.  

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
reimere@kscourts.org
785-296-2256
TTY at 711

Interview schedule

9 a.m.

Jonathan Haig Gregor, attorney, Basehor

9:30 a.m.

Douglas Max Tschauder, attorney, Atchison

10 a.m.

John Robert Kurth, attorney, city attorney for Nortonville, municipal judge for Elwood, and Kickapoo tribal prosecutor, Atchison

10:30 a.m.

Break

10:45 a.m.

Pamela Campbell Burton, attorney, Leavenworth

11:15 a.m.

John J. Bryant Jr., attorney, Kansas City, Kansas

11:45 a.m.

Keyta Diane Kelly, attorney, Tonganoxie

12:15 p.m.

Break for lunch

1:15 p.m.

Andrew E. Werring, attorney, Atchison

1:45 p.m.

Amy Crawford, attorney, Salina

2:15 p.m.

Michael G. Jones, attorney, Lansing

Eligibility requirements

Nominees for district judge must be:

  • at least 30 years old;

  • a lawyer admitted to practice in Kansas and engaged in the practice of law for at least five years, whether as a lawyer, judge, or full-time teacher at an accredited law school; and

  • a resident of the judicial district at the time of taking office and while holding office.

Nominees to governor

The nominating commission will interview nominees and then select from three to five people whose names will be submitted to the governor to fill the position according to statutory qualification and residency requirements. The governor has 60 days after receiving the names to decide whom to appoint.

If there are not three nominees who reside in the judicial district who are deemed qualified by the commission, the commission may consider nominees who reside outside the district.

Term of office

After serving one year in office, the new 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 1st Judicial District Nominating Commission consists of Justice Eric Rosen as the nonvoting chair; Julia Clem and Rosemary Nies, Atchison; Todd Thompson, Basehor; G. Ronald Bates Jr., Mark Preisinger, and Kevin Reardon, Leavenworth; and Lois Meadows and Geoffrey Sonntag, Tonganoxie.

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