Applications are open for two seats on the bench of the Missouri Court of Appeals Southern District until 5 p.m. on July 15.
The Appellate Judicial Commission intends to fill incoming vacancies after Judges Gary W. Lynch and William W. Francis Jr. retire.
As per the Missouri Constitution, applicants must be at least 30 years old, licensed to practice law in the state, a U.S. citizen for a minimum of 15 years and a qualified Missouri voter in the last nine years. The commission will accept nominations sent to [email protected] or by mail to Appellate Judicial Commission, Southern District Judge Vacancy, Post Office Box 150, Jefferson City, MO 65102. Nomination forms can be found at https://www.courts.mo.gov/page.jsp?id=89419.
The commission plans to interview applicants before the public and select a panel of three nominees for Gov. Michael Parson’s consideration of the Lynch vacancy. This is planned at the Hotel Vandivort in Springfield on Aug. 22 and 23.
Once the governor appoints someone for Lynch’s vacancy, the commission plans to briefly reopen the application process for new candidates seeking the Francis vacancy and announce a specific timeline. The commission will then select three nominees from both applicant pools.
Lynch, who has served as a judge for nearly 20 years, retires June 18. He earned his law degree from the University of Missouri in 1976. He practiced law in Bolivar until he became an associate circuit judge in Polk County in 2003. He was later appointed to the Southern District in 2006.
Francis has served as a judge for 12 years and retires July 31. He earned his law degree from the University of Missouri in 1977. He worked in private practice for 30 years in Springfield before his 2010 appointment to the Southern District