Judge Brown announces retirement at end of year

District 8B commission to conduct replacement interviews Nov. 8


DES MOINES – The nominating commission that selects judges for District 8B in Iowa will be looking to replace Chief Judge Mary Ann Brown effective Jan. 1, 2022.

Judge Brown announced her retirement effective Dec. 31, 2021. The district includes Lee County as well as Des Moines, Henry, and Louisa counties in southeast Iowa.

The District 8B Judicial nominating commission, made up of five lawyers, five citizens, and the senior judge in the district received the notification of Brown’s retirement Sept. 24 and will soon begin interviewing candidates to replace Judge Brown.


The commission includes Alta Cook of Wapello, Daniel Culp of Fort Madison, Larry Kruse of Donnellson, Mike Roth of Wayland, and Darlys Baum of Burlington as appointed citizens.

Attorneys on the commission include Nicholas Pothitakis of Burlington, Steven Sents of Columbus Junction, Reyna Wilkens of Fort Madison, Edward Prill of Burlington, and Sara Haas of Burlington. Judge Brown is also the senior judge in the district and will chair the commission to find her replacement.

Applications to fill Judge Brown’s position are due no later than 4:30 p.m. Oct. 29, 2021. Names of those applying for the seat will be made public after the deadline.

Applicants must be members of the Bar of Iowa, a resident of District 8B, and must be of an age that will allow them to serve an initial term and one regular term of office before reaching the age of 72.

The commission may elect to screen applicants and interview fewer than all applications received. Interviews for the position are expected to take place Nov. 8.

The public will also be allowed to submit comments on the applicants prior to the interviews. Those comments or recommendations may be sent to the District Court Administrator’s Office for the Eighth Judicial District at 333 N. Court St., Ottumwa, Iowa 52501 or email cathy.reck@iowacourts.gov.

The commission will then submit the names of two nominees to Governor Kim Reynolds who will then have 30 days to appoint someone to fill the vacancy.

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