Gov. Bob Holden appointed John M. Torrence as Circuit Judge in July 2001. Judge Torrence was a partner with the Kansas City firm of Hubbell, Sawyer, Peak, O'Neal & Napier from 1993 until his appointment to the bench. Prior to that, he was a partner in the firm of Torrence and Wee, from 1988 - 1993. He also served in the Jackson County Public Defender's Office from 1982 - 1988, where he was a trial team leader from 1985 - 1988. He earned his Bachelor's degree in history from St. Louis University in 1979, and his law degree from the University of Missouri - Kansas City in 1982.