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TOPEKA—The 8th Judicial District Nominating Commission is seeking nominations 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.

Justice Caleb Stegall, the Supreme Court departmental justice responsible for the 8th Judicial District, said nominees can apply or be nominated, but it must be on a nomination form and include the nominee's signature.

Eligibility requirements

Kansas law requires that a 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.

Nomination process

Nominations must be accompanied by a nomination form available from the clerk of the district court in Dickinson, Geary, Marion, or Morris counties, the clerk of the appellate courts in the Kansas Judicial Center in Topeka, or online at

One original and eight copies of the completed nomination form and supporting letters must be submitted by noon Thursday, November 5, to:

Justice Caleb Stegall
Kansas Judicial Center
301 SW 10th Ave., Room 313
Topeka, KS 66612

Interviews and appointment

The commission will convene to interview nominees at 9 a.m. Wednesday, December 2, and then appoint a district magistrate judge. Interviews are open to the public. The meeting location will be announced.  

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 Stegall as the nonvoting chair; Kevin Harris, Abilene; Ashley Iverson, Alta Vista; Douglas Thompson, Chapman; Darrell Miller, Dwight; James Hefley, Hillsboro; Keith Henry, Junction City; Edwin Wheeler Jr., Marion; and Eric Coffman, Milford.

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