Under Missouri's nonpartisan court plan, voters in St. Louis
and St. Louis County will decide Tuesday whether 34 judges should
be kept in office.
One judge of the Missouri Supreme Court will be on the ballot
statewide for a 12-year term. In addition, four judges of the
Missouri Court of Appeals will be on the ballot for 12-year terms
in St. Louis and 25 counties in eastern Missouri.
Voters in St. Louis will vote "yes" or "no" to keep 13 circuit
judges in office for another six years and four associate circuit
judges in office for another four years.
In St. Louis County, voters will decide the future of eight
circuit judges and four associate circuit judges.
Judges of the Supreme Court, the courts of appeal and the
courts in St. Louis, St. Louis County and the Kansas City area are
appointed by the governor from three nominees chosen by judicial
nominating commissions of laymen, lawyers and judges.
The judges appear on the ballot without party designation or
opposition. A simple majority is enough to keep them in office.
Outside the St. Louis and Kansas City areas, judges are elected in
Judges do not campaign for office under the appointment plan
adopted in 1940 by voters in the city of St. Louis and Jackson
County. St. Louis, Clay and Platte counties came under the plan in
the late 1960s. In a court reorganization in 1979, associate
circuit judges were added.
Following each judge's biography is a percentage of lawyers
recommending retention or rejection. The recommendations were in
response to a survey sponsored by The Missouri Bar and the Bar
Association of Metropolitan St. Louis. All area judges were
recommended for retention.
MISSOURI SUPREME COURT
RONNIE L. WHITE
Appointed by Gov. Mel Carnahan in 1995, White formerly served
on the Missouri Court of Appeals in St. Louis. He is a former city
counselor and a state representative from St. Louis. White, 43, is
a graduate of Northwestern University and the University of
Missouri at Kansas City Law School.
78 percent yes; 22 percent no.
MISSOURI EASTERN DISTRICT APPELLATE COURT
KENT E. KAROHL
He has been an appeals court judge for nearly 14 years. Karohl,
61, previously served as a municipal judge in Kirkwood. He got
undergraduate degrees at Shimer College, Mount Carroll, Ill., and
the University of Chicago, where he also got his law degree.
76.7 percent yes; 23.3 percent no.
ROBERT G. DOWD JR.
He was appointed in 1994. Before joining the appeals court,
Dowd was a judge on the St. Louis Circuit Court for nine years. He
also is a former St. Louis associate circuit judge. Dowd, 45, got
his law degree at St. Mary's University in San Antonio, Texas.
90.7 percent yes; 9.3 percent no.
MARY RHODES RUSSELL
She was a lawyer in private practice in Hannibal, Mo., before
she was appointed to the court last year. Russell, 38, has served
on the board of governors of Truman State University in Kirksville,
Mo. She got her law degree at the University of Missouri at
84.1 percent yes; 15.9 percent no.
WILLIAM H. CRANDALL JR.
Before his appointment to the appeals court, Crandall was a
circuit judge and magistrate in St. Louis County. He also served as
an assistant public defender. Crandall, 57, has been retained once
as an appellate judge. He got his degrees at Washington University.
88.9 percent yes; 11.1 percent no.
22ND CIRCUIT COURT JUDGES IN ST. LOUIS
JOAN M. BURGER
Burger was appointed last year and is facing her first
retention vote. Burger, 50, is a former president of the Women
Lawyers Association of St. Louis. She is a graduate of Loyola
University in Chicago and St. Louis University.
86.3 percent yes; 3.7 percent no.
EDWARD M. PEEK
Peek, 61, has been a circuit judge since 1982. He has been
retained twice. Before he became a judge, Peek was an agent of the
Internal Revenue Service and an assistant city counselor. …