Public Administrator

A countywide elected office with a four-year term, the Cole County Public Administrator's position is held by Joseph Kuensting. Mr. Kuensting has been the Public Administrator since January 1, 2017.

Public Administrators serve as court appointed Personal Representatives in decedent's estates, and as guardians and/or conservators for individuals who are unable to care for themselves or their property when there is no one else to serve. The office is assigned protective and executive accountability for the estates of deceased persons and the persons and estates of minors and incapacitated or disabled persons when there is no legal guardian or conservator or when no one competent to assume such duties is known or can be found. When ordered by the Court to assume such duties, the Public Administrator provides for the proper care of the person and protects the assets of an estate against injury, waste, theft, or loss.

Functions of the Public Administrator

Please note: Individuals awarded to the Public Administrator become "wards" of the court; also referred to as protectees and clients.

Public Administrators are appointed by the Missouri Circuit Court, County Probate Division, to serve primarily four types of cases:

  • Guardian and/or conservator of disabled persons;
  • Personal representative for deceased estates;
  • Conservator of minor estates and/or;
  • Trustee.


  1. Public Administrator

    Physical Address
    301 E High St.
    Jefferson City, MO 65101

    Phone: 573-634-9199