JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Republican Gov. Mike Parson has appointed Judge Tom Chapman to the Missouri Court of Appeals Western District.

Parson on Thursday announced he picked the Republican judge for the appeals court. Chapman replaces Judge James Welsh, who retired in March.

Parson in a statement said Chapman's "rural perspective" will provide balance to the court. Chapman is from the northwestern Missouri city of Chillicothe.

Chapman has served as a circuit judge in Livingston County in northwest Missouri since 2011. Before that, he practiced law for 19 years in Chillicothe. He graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law.