Jim Layton Files Suit on Behalf of a Member of the State Board of Education Who Governor Greitens Attempted to Fire Last Week

Nov 28, 2017

Jim Layton of Tueth Keeney filed suit this morning on behalf of a member of the State Board of Education who Governor Greitens attempted to fire last week. Governor Greitens appointed Tim Sumners to the State Board in October. But on November 20, a member of the Governor’s staff called Mr. Sumners to say that the governor had “withdrawn” the appointment. Governor Greitens then appointed Jennifer Edwards to the Board. When Mr. Sumners appeared at the November 21 Board meeting, the Board voted to exclude him from the closed session at which the Board””including Ms. Edwards””voted 4-4 on a motion to dismiss the Commissioner of Education, Dr. Margie Vandeven. The petition filed today points out that Governor Greitens did not attempt to remove Mr. Sumners from the Board in the manner required by statute, and asserts that Mr. Sumners””not Ms. Edwards””is still a member of the Board.


Missouri Education – The law firm of Tueth Keeney Cooper Mohan & Jackstadt, P.C. (the “Firm”), has one of the largest and most successful education law groups in the country. The Firm regularly serves the legal counsel needs of approximately 150 school districts throughout Missouri. The Firm also has one of the largest school law practices in Central and Southern Illinois.

James Layton leads the firm’s Appellate practice group and is a member of the firm’s Commercial Litigation, Labor, and Education groups. He assists clients with analysis and presentation of complex legal issues in Missouri and federal courts, both trial and appellate. In addition to handling cases himself and with other attorneys at Tueth Keeney, Jim consults with clients on appellate strategy and assists other counsel in high-stakes, complex appeals.

Jim has briefed and argued cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and before all Missouri appellate courts””including more than 90 cases before the Missouri Supreme Court. He has represented clients in U.S. district courts and in Missouri circuit courts from Jackson County to the City of St. Louis. He has extensive experience with government-related litigation and state taxation disputes. Jim is a fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, a past president of the Bar Association of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, and a past chair of the American Bar Association’s Council of Appellate Lawyers. He is a frequent speaker in the areas of appellate practice and constitutional law, both state and federal.