Judge Robin Ransom – first Black Woman to serve on Missouri Supreme Court

Missouri Governor Mike Parson on Monday appointed Missouri Eastern District Appeals Court Judge Robin Ransom to be the first Black woman to serve on the state Supreme Court. Judge Ransom will replace Judge Laura Denvir Stith who retired in March 2021, was the second woman appointed to the high court. Previously Former Republican Governor Matt Blunt first appointed Robin Ransom to serve as a St. Louis County circuit judge in 2008.

The Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District, is the state’s largest appellate court, with offices in the historic Old Post Office building in downtown St. Louis. The Court is composed of 14 judges who handle approximately 50 percent of the intermediate appellate caseload in Missouri, covering 25 counties and the City of St. Louis. 

Judge Robin Ransom marks a new first for the court as Missouri’s only Black female Supreme Court judge. She’s the third Black judge, and she’ll join Chief Justice George Draper as the second Black judge currently serving on the high court.

“What this appointment does show is that this governor has the courage to make such an appointment, that he has great vision for this state, and he knows how great this state is and what this state can be.” – Judge Robin Ransom

Govenor Mike Parson noted the historic appointment but said “at the end of the day, it’s the hard work that she done” that earned her the position.

“She was the best qualified candidate for the Supreme Court, and that’s why she was chosen for the position.” – Governor Mike Parson

Governor Parson said it helped that he previously met Ransom when he appointed her in 2019 to serve as an appeals court judge. He said he wasn’t sure what day she will leave her position on the Eastern District Court of Appeals and start work at the Supreme Court in Jefferson City.

Judge Robin Ransom was one of 25 applicants for the Supreme Court vacancy and a panel of lawyers, citizens and the chief justice review Supreme Court applicants, then submit three finalists for the governor to choose from. Judge Robin Ransom’s appointment does not need state Senate confirmation.

Dates of Judicial Service:

  • Appointed in January 2019 to the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District
  • Appointed Circuit Judge, 2008
  • Appointed Family Court Commissioner, 2002

Education:

  • Juris Doctorate, University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law, 1991
  • B.A., Political Science and Sociology, Douglass College-Rutgers University 1988

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