After more than 20 years of serving as a circuit judge in the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit of Missouri, Jon R. Gray has joined the Kansas City office of Shook, Hardy & Bacon as a Partner in the General Litigation Division. He is licensed to practice before the Missouri Supreme Court, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.
In August 2007, Judge Gray will become chair of the Judicial Council of the National Bar Association. He is also active in The Missouri Bar, the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association and the Jackson County Bar Association. Judge Gray has served as a faculty member for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy in regional and national seminars since 1987 in addition to serving as faculty for the Kessler-Edison Program in Trial Techniques at Emory University School of Law and the Missouri Judicial College. His reviews and commentaries have appeared in legal and non-legal publications.
Judge Gray is a 1973 graduate of Grinnell College, where he majored in American Studies, and a 1976 graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law. He is a life member of the University of Missouri-Kansas City Alumni Association and the NAACP.
Judge Gray is active in a wide variety of community endeavors and currently serves on the executive committees of the Truman Medical Centers and the Lyric Opera of Kansas City. His past board affiliations include the Urban League of Greater Kansas City, the Kansas City Neighborhood Alliance, Friends of the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music, and ReStart, Inc., an interfaith program for the homeless.
He is active in both United Methodist Church and ecumenical affairs, having served as a member of the Missouri United Methodist Foundation, the Missouri West Board of Trustees and the National Council of Churches (USA). Judge Gray was elected to serve as a delegate to the United Methodist Church’s General and Jurisdictional Conference in 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000, and 2004. He was elected to an eight-year term on the Judicial Council of the United Methodist Church in 2004.