Kansas Supreme Court Justice to retire

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Justice Lee Johnson, who has served on the Kansas Supreme Court since 2007, announced today he will retire September 8.

Johnson was appointed to the Supreme Court after serving on the Kansas Court of Appeals from 2001 to 2007.

Before Johnson became a judge, he practiced law in Caldwell and served as city attorney for Caldwell, Argonia, and Hunnewell. He is a graduate of the Washburn University School of Law, where he ranked second in a class of 211.

Johnson's retirement triggers a merit-based nomination process that Kansans voted to add to the Kansas Constitution in 1958.

When there is a vacancy on the bench, the Supreme Court Nominating Commission reviews applications and conducts public interviews of nominees. The commission narrows the nominee pool to three names that it sends to the governor. The governor chooses one nominee to appoint.

To be eligible, a nominee must be:

  • at least 30 years old;
  • a lawyer admitted to practice in Kansas and engaged in the practice of law for at least 10 years, whether as a lawyer, judge, or full-time teacher at an accredited law school.

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