ST. LOUIS – Missouri Gov. Mike Parson has officially launched an online application for anyone interested in becoming the next St. Louis Circuit Attorney.

The new candidate would take over for outgoing circuit attorney Kim Gardner, who will step down on June 1 after months of calls, requests, and demands to resign.

Before Gardner departs, Parson will appoint a circuit attorney to finish her term through next year. Parson said in a statement last week that he is committed to finding a candidate who represents the St. Louis community, values and public safety.

“We truly want the best person for the job who can restore law and order to our great City of St. Louis,” said Parson. “The prosecutor we appoint has a real opportunity to make meaningful and lasting change that strengthens public safety. We encourage any qualified person who is committed to the rule of law and thinks they have what it takes for this challenge ahead to apply and be considered.”

The next St. Louis Circuit Attorney will be required to take over June 1. Due to this short timeline, the application period will close at noon on Monday, May 15. Parson’s office says this will allow for candidates to be considered and a replacement to be selected.

Parson’s office adds he is looking for a candidate with the following qualifications:

  • Commitment to the written rule of law
  • Strong managerial experience
  • Record of fair and just application of state and local law
  • Member of the St. Louis community

Gardner, the first African American chief prosecutor for the city of St. Louis, announced her intent to resign last Thursday.

Before that, she had faced legal battles on numerous fronts via Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey’s drive to remove her from office and indirect criminal contempt cases, in addition to a dwindling roster of prosecutors in her office due to resignations. It’s a situation at least one St. Louis judge dubbed a “rudderless ship of chaos.”