Support for Judges

Judges Assistance Committee

Established by Kansas Supreme Court Rule 640, the Kansas Judges Assistance Committee provides help to any Kansas judge in need due to mental or physical disability, or addiction.

Purpose of the Committee

The Judges Assistance Committee seeks to:

  1. Identify judges who are impaired;
  2. Arrange intervention;
  3. Recommend avenues of treatment;
  4. Provide a program of peer support;
  5. Advocate for judges who are ill and help them recognize their impairment, obtain treatment, and return to their job; and
  6. Educate the public and attorneys about the nature of impairments and encourage early referrals and self-referrals.


Contact with judges is confidential, unless the matter is referred to the Commission on Judicial Conduct because the judge has failed or refused to address issues of concern.

Committee Members

  • District Judge Ben Burgess, Sedgwick County
  • District Magistrate Judge Marty Clark, Russell County
  • District Magistrate Judge Richard Flax, Trego County
  • District Judge Michael Hoelscher, Sedgwick County
  • District Judge Sally Pokorny, Douglas County
  • District Magistrate Judge Dale Snyder, Rush County
  • District Judge Mark Ward, Bourbon County

Contact the Committee

Judges Assistance Committee
301 SW 10th Ave., Room 107
Topeka, KS 66612-1507

The American Bar Association now operates a Peer Assistance hotline for judges only.

Judges who need assistance because of alcoholism, substance abuse, addiction or mental health issues may reach other judges, who are in recovery or who have gone through treatment, by calling a helpline sponsored by the American Bar Association.

Judges who have volunteered to be a personal resource to other judges throughout the US and Canada are uniquely positioned to share their experiences, strengths and hope.

Both judges in need of help and those interested in serving as a peer-to-peer volunteer should call 800-219-6474 during business hours CST. All information is confidential and protected by statute.

National Helpline for Judges Helping Judges