Abels & Annes

Melissa Taylor Standridge Appointed to the Kansas Court of Appeals

The Governor of Kansas, Kathleen Sebelius, has named Melissa Taylor Standridge to the Kansas Court of Appeals, citing her extensive litigation and court experience, as well as her involvement in the community and commitment to the children of Kansas. “Melissa’s years of experience with the judiciary and her work in private practice will be beneficial as she joins the Court of Appeals,” Sebelius said. “With strong ties to her community and a breadth of legal experience, I am confident Melissa will serve the people of Kansas well.”

There are only 13 Court of Appeals Judges in the State of Kansas. Standridge fills a new position created by the Legislature in 2007.

Melissa has practiced law for 14 years and has served as chambers counsel for U.S. Magistrate Judge David J. Waxse in Kansas City, KS, since October 1999. In the 8 years with Judge Waxse, Standridge has been responsible for analysis and resolution in hundreds of cases, and has written over 300 proposed opinions, activities which prepare her well for the duties of the Kansas Court of Appeals. Prior to that she practiced four years with Shook, Hardy & Bacon in Overland Park, Kansas. She also worked as chambers counsel to the Honorable Elmo Hunter in the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri from 1993-1995.

She graduated law school in 1993 from the University of Missouri – Kansas City School of Law. There she was editor-in-chief of the school’s law review. She attended undergrad at the University of Kansas in Lawrence.

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Melissa Taylor Standridge, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer, and David Abels.

Melissa was the 2004 recipient of the American Inns of Court’s Sandra Day O’Connor Award for her great work in the areas of public service and pro bono activities. Below she is pictured at the American Inns of Court banquet in Washington D.C. with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer and David Abels. She later met with Justice Sandra Day O’Connor in chambers and then was a guest for that morning’s oral arguments in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Congressman Dennis Moore (Third District – Kansas) recently nominated Melissa for 2007 Angels in Adoption for her hard work on behalf of foster children. Melissa is a licensed foster parent and has fostered four children. She has adopted 3 foster children when parental rights of the birth parents were terminated. She also serves as chairperson of the Alternative Care Review Board.

In the Abels family, we will always remember Melissa’s tireless efforts to help find my brother, Ben Abels, who was lost in the 2004 Tsunami. During the weeks following the disaster, she dropped everything she was doing in Kansas and traveled to Chicago to help in the search. Melissa is a first cousin of Dave Abels.

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Melissa Taylor Standridge and U. S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.