Nixon officially names Keaveny to judgeship, sets date for special election


ST. LOUIS – On the second to last day the 2016 legislative session, Sen. Joe Keaveny, D-St. Louis, got word that Nixon would recommend him to become an administrative law judge in St. Louis. Senate leadership and various Senators congratulated him on the last day of session, even allowing him to take the dias.

Almost two months later, Gov. Jay Nixon made it official. Keaveny will become a workers’ compensation administrative law judge, meaning he will judge cases involving injured workers and issue awards and approve settlements.

“Joe Keaveny has been well-respected by members from both sides of the aisle for his intellect and his leadership, and he will continue to provide that high level of public service to the people of Missouri as an administrative law judge,” Nixon said in a statement.

In addition to being the outgoing Minority Floor Leader and the chairman of the Progress and Development Committee in the Senate, Keaveny has had an illustrious legal career. He has worked as an attorney for Weiss Attorneys at Law and on U.S. Securities Exchange and Commission compliance issues for US Bank.

Now, he says he is excited to be in the position.

“It’s an area that I’m really looking forward to practicing law in. It’s a great opportunity for me, a veryimportant area to practice in, and quite frankly, I’m looking forward to doing it,” Keaveny said.

Perhaps most importantly, Nixon was quick in establishing the special election for the 4th Senate District. It will be held Nov. 8, 2016, the same day as the presidential and other statewide final elections. Term-limited House Minority Leader Jake Hummel, D-St. Louis, has already announced his intention to run, and Rep. Karla May, the minority caucus secretary, has also expressed her interest in the seat. May has served three terms in the House.

The special election will be made up presumably of single candidates for each party who must file by Sept. 7, according to Stephanie Fleming, a spokeswoman for the Secretary of State’s office. District party committees will meet before that time to determine a candidate. The district leans heavily towards Democrats, so it is likely both Hummel and May will be frontrunners for the seat.

This is a developing story which is subject to change as new information emerges.

UPDATE – 4:10 p.m., July 7: Added comments from Keaveny.

UPDATE – 4:35 p.m., July 7: Added information about the special election.