Public Hearing December 4, 2023 to establish new County Commission District Lines

The Adair County Commission and the Adair County Clerk’s Office will be hosting a public hearing on Monday, December 4, 2023, from 4:30 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. at the Adair County Annex, 300 N. Franklin Street in Kirksville. The topic to be discussed is realigning Adair County Commission District boundaries for 1st and 2nd District Commissioners per Mo. Revised Statute 49.010.

Information provided by the 2020 census shows that the County’s population is no longer represented equally regarding current areas associated with County Commission District 1 and County Commission District 2. To provide a more equal representation, the County Commission and the County Clerk’s Office have worked together to establish new boundaries for District 1 and District 2. At the hearing, maps will be provided showing the proposed changes to the districts.

Both the County Commission and members of the County Clerk’s Office will be available for questions during the hearing. Information and maps are available in the offices of the County Commission and the County Clerk located on the second floor of the Adair County Courthouse. The information is also available on the County’s website at

The final boundary changes will be approved by the County Commission. Changes will become effective January 1, 2024, and the new district boundaries will be in place for Commissioner candidate filing, February 27, 2024, through March 26, 2024.

Please contact either the County Commission or the County Clerk office for more details.

Current Commission-Districts 2023
Proposed Commission Districts-Population
Proposed Commission-Districts In Detail

Adair County Commission

The County Commission is an elected three-member governing body. The commission includes a Presiding Commissioner, a First District Commissioner, and a Second District Commissioner. The Commission is responsible for county administrative tasks which includes:

  • Maintenance and repair of approximately 700 miles the roadway and bridges
  • Establishes County policy
  • Approves and adopts the annual budget for all County operations
  • Approves actual expenditures for each department
  • Ensures County-wide compliance with numerous statutory requirements
  • Acts as liaison with county boards, commissions, and other governmental entities

In addition, the County Commission must represent the county on the following regional councils which may encompass Adair County:

  • Division of Workforce Development
  • Regional Planning Committee
  • Solid Waste Management
  • University of Missouri extension
  • Commissions and councils relating to health, education or welfare of the citizens as established by executive or legislative action of the government of the United States or of the state
  • Other councils and organizations relating to operations of counties as from time to time may be created

History of the Adair County Commission

Prior to 1877, Adair County had a variety of district, associate, or township judges (commissioners). The terms of office were sometimes two years, four years, and for one period six years.

That all changed in 1877 when the Missouri Legislature provided for a court (office) of three judges (commissioners). One person was to be the Presiding Judge (Commissioner) who was elected on a county-wide basis for a four year term and two District Judges (Commissioners) elected by their individual districts for a term of four years.

For more than fifty years, the districts in Adair County were (1) Benton and Nineveh Townships, and (2) the other eight townships. Due to population density, this became an unequal division. The first district had 83% of the population and the larger 2nd District had only 17% of the population.

In 1974, a new division was created. District 1 would consist of the entire city of Kirksville east of the Norfolk & Western Railroad while District 2 would encompass the remainder of the county. This new division made for a more equal distribution of the county between the two districts.

Purple Heart

Past and Present Adair County Judges (Commissioners)

Name Dates Party
Mark Shahan2019-CurrentRepublican
Stanley Pickens2011-2017Republican
Gary Jones1999-2010Democrat
Bill Novinger1991-1998Democrat
Alvin Henderson1987-1990Republican
Gail Novinger1985-1986Republican
Jack Shelton1975-1984Republican
Stanley Ambrosia1971-1975Republican
Walter Hoffman1963-1971Republican
Waldo Shokey1959-1963Democrat
Grover H. Belfield1951-1959Republican
Arlie Fast1949-1951Democrat
Bert Elsea1943-1949Republican
Joe E. Johnson1939-1943Republican
Ray Bennett1931-1939Democrat
Amos Propst1927-1931Republican
George W. Newton1925-1919Republican
Leander L. Mikel1923-1927Republican
C.B. McClanahan1919-1923Democrat
Aaron P. Hopson1907-1915Democrat
George W. Newton1903-1907Republican
Joseph S. Hickman1899-1903Republican
J.A. Bragg1895-1899Republican
J.J. Keim1891-1895Republican
W.P Linder1887-1891Republican
J.L. Hawkins1883-1887Republican
M.G. Clem1879-1883Republican
Noah Stukey1877-1879Republican
Name Dates Party
William King2017-CurrentRepublican
Carson Adams2009-2016Democrat
Gene Schneider2005-2008Republican
Ray Klinginsmith2001-2004Republican
Herman Truitt1993-2000Republican
Bobby Leavitt1991-1992Democrat
Jack Shelton1989-1990Republican
Bobby Leavitt1987-1988Democrat
Stanley Ambrosia1979-1986Republican
Leon G. Coy1977-1978Democrat
Alva Bowes1971-1976Republican
Stanley Ambrosia1963-1971Republican
Walter Huffman1951-1963Republican
Dewey Conner1949-1951Democrat
Harry Balch1945-1949Republican
H.B. Umbarger1943-1945Republican
Bert Elsea1939-1943Republican
Pearl E. Arnold1937-1939Democrat
Fred Miller1933-1937Democrat
W.M. Willis1931-1933Democrat
F.L. Rogers1927-1931Republican
Amos Propst1925-1927Republican
F.L. Rogers1923-1925Republican
Leander L. Mikel1919-1923Republican
Andrew J. Houston1917-1919Republican
Samuel F. Shoop1915-1917Republican
Jacob H. Shoop1911-1915Democrat
Z.T. Hagans (resigned)
Thomas W. Fickel (appointed)
C.E. Markey1905-1909Republican
W.C. Ditmars1901-1905Republican
R.N. Toler1899-1901Republican
Joseph Hickman1895-1899Republican
Adam Shoop1889-1895Republican
A.N. Toler1887-1889Republican
J.H. Novinger1885-1887Republican
G.W. Novinger1883-1885Republican
S.F. Stahl1881-1883Republican
P.D. Shoop1879-1881Republican
Name Dates Party
Mark Thompson2009-CurrentRepublican
Sid Osborn2001-2008Democrat
Bob Brawner1991-2000Democrat
Myrl Ferguson1987-1990Republican
Jack Ward1985-1986Democrat
Dale Miller1981-1984Republican
Larry Smith1979-1980Democrat
Wilson Stribling1971-1978Republican
Earl D. Platz1969-1971Republican
Homer Johnson1967-1969Republican
Ray Pierce1965-1967Democrat
Raymond Rummerfield1959-1965Republican
Oliver Stribling1951-1959Republican
A.D. Waddill1947-1951Republican
Oliver Stribling1943-1947Republican
Grover H. Belfield1941-1943Republican
Reuel W. Roberts1939-1941Republican
Charles C. Martin1935-1939Republican
J.P. Sleeth1933-1935Democrat
Sampson Boyland1931-1933Democrat
Joe E. Johnson1927-1931Republican
Ray Bennett1925-1927Democrat
W.H. Wilkins1923-1925Republican
Amos Probst1919-1923Republican
Ray Bennett1917-1919Democrat
Robert McClanahan1915-1917Democrat
Seymour J. Reed1911-1915Republican
R.W. Hart1907-1911Republican
Baxter R. Hawkins1903-1907Republican
George W. Newton1897-1903Republican
Daniel Tuttle1893-1897Republican
J.J. Keim1891-1893Republican
William Hart1889-1891Republican
George R. Huston1885-1889Republican
J.T. Johnson1881-1885Republican
John H. Rainer1879-1881Republican