Gov. Jay Nixon today appointed Associate Circuit Judge Douglas R. Beach to fill the position of Circuit Judge for the 21st Circuit, which includes all of St. Louis County. The position became available after Gov. Nixon appointed the Honorable Gary M. Gaertner to the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District.
"Judge Beach is well respected for his experience and skill both on the bench and formerly as an attorney in private practice, particularly in the area of family law," Gov. Nixon said. "I am pleased to appoint him as a circuit judge to serve the people of our state's most populous county."
Judge Beach was in private practice in the St. Louis metropolitan area from 1977 until he was appointed to the bench in St. Louis County in 2005. As a judge, he has presided over the Family Court, deciding cases that often include complex custodial or property matters. A frequent lecturer on family law issues, Judge Beach is a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, which recognizes leading practitioners in the field of family law. He also is a past president of the St. Louis County Bar Association.
A native of Massachusetts, Judge Beach received his law degree from the New England School of Law in 1973. He then served on active duty with the United States Marine Corps for four years as a judge advocate, and retired as a lieutenant colonel from the Marine Corps Reserve in 1993.
Judge Beach was an incorporator of the city of Chesterfield in 1988 and served as the city attorney for more than 17 years. He is involved in numerous community activities, including serving on the board of directors for the Children's Home Society of Missouri.
Judge Beach was one of three applicants submitted to the Governor for consideration by the Twenty-first Judicial Circuit Commission under the Missouri Nonpartisan Court Plan.