25th Judicial District Nominating Commission seeking nominees for Finney Co. judge vacancy

(Gray Media)
Published: Jan. 22, 2021 at 7:59 PM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The 25th Judicial District is searching for a new Finney Co. judge.

The 25th Judicial District Nominating Commission says it is looking for nominations to fill a district judge vacancy in Finney Co. that was created by the retirement of Judge Ricklin Pierce on Jan. 13.

The 25th Judicial District is made up of Finney, Greeley, Hamilton, Kearny, Scott and Wichita counties.

According to the Commission, Supreme Court Justice Dan Biles is responsible for the district and has said that individuals can apply or be nominated, however, nominations must come on a nomination form and include the nominee’s signature.

A district judge nominee is required to be at least 30 years old, a lawyer admitted to practice in the state and engaged in the practice for at least five years and a must be a resident of the district at the time of taking office and while holding git.

The Commission said nominations must be accompanied by a nomination form which is available from clerks of the district courts in the 25th Judicial District, the clerk of the appellate courts in Topeka or online.

According to the Commission, one original and 14 copies of the completed nomination form and supporting letters must be submitted by noon on Monday, Feb. 22, to William I. Heydman, Commission Secretary, 1519 E. Fulton Terrace, P.O. Box 2010, Garden City, KS 67846.

The Commission said it will meet via videoconference to interview nominees on Friday, March 12, at 9 a.m. It said interviews will be open to the public and will be livestreamed on the Kansas Judicial Branch YouTube channel.

According to the Commission, it will interview nominees and then choose from three to five people who will be submitted to the governor to fill the position according to statutory qualification and residency requirements. It said Governor Laura Kelly will have 60 days after receiving the names to decide whom to appoint.

The Commission said after serving one year in office, the new judge will be required to stand for a retention vote in the next general election and if retained will serve a four-year term.

The 25th Judicial District Nominating Commission said it is composed of Justice Dan Biles as the nonvoting chair, Lucille Douglass of Garden City, William Heydman of Garden City, John Lindner of Garden City, Zachary Schultz of Garden City, Thomas Walker of Garden City, Gene Gaede of Holcomb, Ralph Goodnight of Lakin, Rita Wiles of Leoti, Christine Cupp of Scott City, Robert Gale Jr. of Syracuse, Timothy Kohart of Syracuse and Deborah Kuttler of Tribune.

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