Dayton names new judge to Third Judicial District

ST. PAUL — Gov. Mark Dayton announced Monday the appointment of Karen R. Duncan as District Court Judge in Minnesota’s Third Judicial District. Duncan will be replacing The Honorable Casey J. Christian, who retired on Dec. 31, 2012. The judgeship will be chambered at Owatonna in Steele County.

“Ms. Duncan has demonstrated a serious commitment to justice and our state’s legal system, and she will be an excellent judge,” Dayton said in a press release. “Her history of public service and community engagement will help her as she serves the people of the Third Judicial District.”

Duncan is the chief public defender for the Third Judicial District, where she supervises staff and volunteers serving clients in the 11 counties of the district. She served as the assistant public defender for the district, and prior to that, was the sole practitioner of the Duncan Law Office in Owatonna. She has also been an assistant county attorney for Rice and Olmsted Counties in Minnesota, and for Benton County in Iowa. Duncan earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota and her J.D. from the University of Minnesota Law School.

Duncan is a member of Owatonna Business Women, Steele County Safe and Drug Free Community Coalition, and the Steele County Transitional Housing Board. Minnesota’s Third Judicial District consists of Dodge, Fillmore, Freeborn, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Rice, Steele, Wabasha, Waseca and Winona Counties.

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