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Content date: 09/26/2013

Appellate commission announces nominees to fill Crane vacancy on Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District

ST. LOUIS – Mary R. Russell, chief justice of the Supreme Court of Missouri and chair of the Appellate Judicial Commission, announces that the commission today submitted to Gov. Jay Nixon its panel of nominees to fill the vacancy on the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District. This vacancy exists due to the resignation of Judge Kathianne Knaup Crane, who retired Aug. 15, 2013, after serving for 23 years on the court of appeals.

After nearly six hours of public interviews, nearly four hours of deliberations and six rounds of balloting, the nominees are: Judge Michael P. David, six votes; James M. Dowd, five votes; and Philip M. Hess, four votes. Once the nominees were determined, the commission agreed to endorse all three nominees.

David is a circuit judge in the 22nd circuit (St. Louis city). He was born May 7, 1951. He earned his bachelor of science in business administration, magna cum laude, in 1973 from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and his law degree in 1977 from the St. Louis University School of Law. David lives in St. Louis.

Dowd practices law at The James M. Dowd Law Firm PC in Webster Groves, Mo. He was born June 26, 1964. He earned his bachelor of arts in history in 1985 from St. Louis University and his law degree in 1990 from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Dowd lives in Webster Groves.

Hess is a partner at Larsen & Hess PC in St. Louis. He was born March 22, 1958. He earned his bachelor of arts in economics and philosophy in 1980 from Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Mo., and his law degree in 1983 from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law. Hess lives in Sunset Hills, Mo.

The governor has 60 days to select one member of the panel to fill the vacancy. Should he fail to do so, the Missouri Constitution directs the commission to make the appointment.

In addition to Russell, the commission is composed of attorneys Thomas M. Burke of St. Louis, J.R. Hobbs of Kansas City and John D. Wooddell of Springfield and lay members Cheryl M. Darrough of Columbia, John T. Gentry of Springfield and Edward “Nick” Robinson of St. Louis.


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