Judge Christine Carpenter, who has served on the 13th Judicial Circuit Court of Missouri for 18 years, will retire Aug. 31.
Carpenter, 69, was first sworn in as a judicial officer on Sept. 1, 1999. She was first appointed to the bench as a drug court commissioner.
Carpenter emphasized recovery and treatment programs throughout her career on the bench.
"Having the opportunity to lead the treatment courts and see the real change they can make for both individuals who participate as well as our entire community has been the highlight of my judicial career," Carpenter said.
Carpenter expanded the drug court program by developing an additional drug court in Callaway County and DWI courts in both Boone and Callaway counties.
The Boone County Drug Court was selected as a National Mentor Court for three years under her leadership, according to a news release.
Carpenter has been a leader in both Missouri and the U.S. in the field of recovery courts, which are specialty courts designed for adult offenders who have been convicted of a non-violent offense and have been diagnosed with a serious mental illness.
Carpenter served on the board of the Missouri Association of Treatment Court Professionals and was a member of the Missouri Supreme Court Committee on Alternative Treatment Courts.
Under her leadership, Boone County started a Mental Health Court in 2003 and a Veterans Treatment Court in 2013. More than 1,400 participants have successfully completed those programs, according to the release.
Then-Gov. Jay Nixon appointed Carpenter to fill the vacancy of circuit judge in 2010. She was re-elected to that position and served as the presiding judge of the 13th Circuit from Jan. 30, 2015, to Jan. 31, 2017.
"I have watched (Carpenter) develop the alternative sentencing court program in the circuit as a virtual pioneer," Presiding Judge Kevin Crane said, "Christine is a great friend and co-worker. Her vast experience on the bench will be sorely missed."
After her retirement, Carpenter will serve as a senior judge. This means she will still be involved in overseeing the court and taking on fewer cases. Gov. Eric Greitens will be in charge of appointing a new judge to the court.