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TOPEKA—District Magistrate Judge Marty Clark, who serves in Russell County, will retire May 1 after 23 years of service.

Clark has been a magistrate judge since 1998. Russell County is part of the 20th Judicial District, which also includes Barton, Ellsworth, Rice, and Stafford counties.

"I became a judge because I wanted the opportunity to help people," he said. "Working with child in need of care cases and adoptions is the most satisfying part of the job. The people of Russell County gave me an opportunity at a young age, and for that I am very thankful."

Clark has been active in judicial-related groups and committees.

He currently serves on the Kansas Criminal Justice Reform Commission and the judicial branch's Judges Assistance Committee. He is a member of the 20th Judicial District Juvenile Corrections Advisory Board.

Clark received the Lee Nusser Award for Outstanding Magistrate Judge of 2020 from the Kansas District Magistrate Judges Association. He served the previous year as president of the association.

He was named Kansas CASA Judge of the Year in 1989 and nominated twice for the National CASA Judge of the Year.

Clark is a Smith Center native and graduated from Fort Hays State University in 1989 with a degree in sociology and an emphasis in criminal justice.

District magistrate judges in the 20th Judicial District are elected by partisan ballot. State statute requires the governor to select a replacement to complete a vacated term of office. Clark was last elected to a four-year term in 2020.

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