The search for a new district magistrate judge in the 21st Judicial District will officially begin Friday as a nominating commission plans to convene by telephone conference, to set the schedule for filling a vacancy on the court.

Last week it was announced that Judge James Kepple was leaving the court to become the next City of Manhattan municipal judge. Kepple’s last day on the district court, composed of Clay and Riley counties, was Monday.

To be considered for district magistrate judge, a nominee must be a Riley County resident at the time of taking office and while holding office. They also must be a graduate of a high school, secondary school or the equivalent and be either a practicing lawyer in Kansas or able to pass an examination to become certified within 18 months.

The nominating commission consists of Justice Caleb Stegall as the nonvoting chair; Kyle Bauer and Steve McMahan, of Clay Center; William Bahr, Johanna Lyle, Jeremiah Platt, Derrick Roberson and Kitra Schartz, of Manhattan; and Steven Hargrave, of Randolph. They will be tasked with selecting whom to appoint to the position.

The phone conference is open to the public and will take place at 1:30 p.m. Friday.

The meeting is open to the public. To listen:

  • call 845-361-8917
  • enter guest passcode 3872788