Then: Attorney, Greene County; partner, Ozarks Elder Law LLC
Now: Associate Circuit Judge, Christian County
Jessica Kruse is sitting on the other side of the bench now.
Formerly an attorney and partner at Ozarks Elder Law LLC, Kruse was appointed by Gov. Mike Parson to the associate circuit judge position in Christian County in September 2018. Back in 2013, she also was serving as guardian ad litem in family, probate and juvenile court in Greene County.
She says 2019 was a year of transition.
“You have to adjust your mindset from advocate to neutral,” Kruse says.
“There’s not a lot of issues that are black and white and very clear, so I have to make some hard decisions.”
She handles 60% of the domestic cases in the county, as well as juvenile law, associate civil cases and some associate criminal cases. Her appointment is a four-year term, which she plans to run for again in 2022.
“I plan to do this as long as I can,” she says.
Kruse stays busy with her three kids who are in elementary, middle and high school. She’s also on the board of Care to Learn and is involved in Rotary Club of Springfield.
Atlanta-based Chicken Salad Chick made its Springfield debut; husband and wife Garrett and Rose Cochran opened Heirloom Candle Bar; and mobile eatery Girldad BBQ LLC was launched.