Political Pop in with Josh Devine As part of our election coverage the Missourian is meeting candidates for local elections with a series of rapid-fire questions. We spoke with Josh Devine, candidate for Boone County Associate Circuit Judge, at the MU Law School to catch up with him before the election.

Josh Devine would like his two sons to do what makes them happy.

“I want them to have the same experience that I have walking into court every day, where I know that I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be,” he said.

Devine, 37, is running for Division 11 Boone County associate circuit judge , a job then-Gov. Eric Greitens appointed him to fill in February. It’s his first election bid, and the black-and-gold signs reading “Keep Judge Josh Devine” are scattered around Columbia.

Judge Josh Devine Profile on Josh Devine, the Republican incumbent seeking election to the Division 11 associate circuit judge.

“I think it’s impossible for you to understand what’s going on in your courtroom unless you understand what’s going on in your community,” he said.

Devine is a Columbia native who graduated from Hickman High School in 1999 and attended law school at MU.

“This is home,” he said.

He said his father influenced his career path. The late Jim Devine was a professor and associate dean at the MU School of Law, where he worked for 30 years, and he also worked briefly as a judge in Iron County.

As a kid, Josh Devine would watch his dad teach trial practice at MU. Devine inherited his father’s love for baseball and Bruce Springsteen, along with his passion for the law, which he takes very seriously.

“We have to always look for ways to further the administration of justice,” he said.

That is how he views his job as a judge — to be honest and in accordance with the law.

“I am always going to give everyone that appears in front of me in Division 11 a full and fair opportunity to be heard,” Devine said.

Before being appointed to the bench, he was a practicing attorney for law firms in Columbia and St. Louis, most recently for Rogers, Ehrhardt, Weber & Howard LLC.

Devine said the transition from litigator to judge came naturally. Tim Gerding, an attorney with Evans & Dixon who has argued against Devine the litigator and in front of Devine the judge, agrees.

“It’s like he’s been a judge for 30 years,” Gerding said. “He’s an absolute natural.”

Gerding believes Devine will always be fair. “He is going to take the time to listen to you.”

Family is extremely important to Devine. His wife, Christina, is an associate at Harlan, Still & Koch. The two met at MU while attending law school. They have two sons, James, 6, and John, 4.

Bob Bailey is Devine’s campaign committee treasurer. Bailey is assistant dean emeritus at the MU School of Law and was a longtime colleague of Devine’s father.

Bailey said he is not treasurer for his math skills but because of his respect for Devine and his family.

“His dad was a man of impeccable character,” Bailey said. “Josh has impeccable character.”

Bailey, who was a judge in Columbia for four years, believes Devine has the right qualities for a judge.

“He is independent-minded and has judicial temperament,” Bailey said.

Devine serves as a board member of the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Mid-Missouri. Board President Sally Silvers said she appreciates his work.

“He is a serious member of the board,” Silvers said. “He partakes in everything.”

Silvers also praised Devine’s civility as a judge. Devine is a Republican, and while Silvers might not always agree with him politically, she calls him “a breath of fresh air.”

Devine believes it’s important to leave political biases outside the courtroom, and Silvers appreciates his ability to do that.

“He leaves his partisanship at the door.”

Devine sees his post as educational. He wants to make sure people who appear in court understand their situation.

“By taking the time to explain things, we’ll instill within the public a confidence in our court system,” Devine said.

He reveres the justice system, he said.

“I don’t think there is anything else that I could do better in this world,” he said.

Supervising editor is Scott Swafford.


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