Judge Duane Benton

Adjunct Professor of Law
Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit

Judge Duane Benton was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in 2004. Before his federal appointment, he was a judge on the Supreme Court of Missouri, where he served as Chief Justice from 1997-99. He was appointed to the Supreme Court of Missouri in 1991, and retained in office by the people of Missouri at the November 1992 election. He is the only Certified Public Accountant serving on any supreme court in America. Before becoming a judge, Judge Benton practiced law as a private attorney in Jefferson City for six years and then served for two years as Missouri's Director of Revenue, during which he wrote the Missouri Taxpayer Bill of Rights, initiated the short-form state tax return, administered income tax refunds to retirees, and led Missouri to ninth place among all states in sales-tax audits of out-of-state firms. He also served on the Multistate Tax Commission, with tax administrators from 32 other states, who eventually elected him chair of the group. In addition to earning his law degree from Yale and an LL.M. at the University of Virginia, Judge Benton completed the Senior Executives Program at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government as a Danforth Fellow. He has also accomplished the post-graduate Appellate Judges Course at the Institute of Judicial Administration, New York University. He was also awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws by Central Missouri State University. At the beginning of his legal career, Judge Benton served with the U.S. Navy as a judge advocate. While in the Navy, he attended Memphis State University and earned a master's in business administration and accountancy. He became a certified public accountant in Missouri in 1983. Judge Benton is a member of the American Bar Association, The Missouri Bar and the Cole County Bar Association; the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants; Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants; Association of Government Accountants; National Society of Public Accountants; and Independent Accountants Society of Missouri.

Contact Information

(615) 322-2758 (voice)
(615) 322-6631 (fax)


LL.M. University of Virginia
J.D. Yale University
B.A. Northwestern University