Governor Sandoval Names Inaugural Appointments to the Nevada Court of Appeals


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Mari St. Martin
Carson City, NV - December 17, 2014

Governor Brian Sandoval today announced the inaugural appointments to the newly created Nevada Court of Appeals. Sandoval has selected Jerome “Jerry” Tao, Michael Patrick Gibbons, and Abbi Silver, for departments one, two, and three, respectively. The selections were made following interviews with each of the nine finalists as recommended by the Nevada Commission on Judicial Selection.

“I was incredibly impressed by all of the finalists for the Nevada Court of Appeals. This was a difficult decision due to the number of accomplished and qualified applicants. I am confident that Jerry Tao, Michael Gibbons, and Abbi Silver will work tirelessly to build this new court swiftly and smoothly. These fine individuals will refine and enhance Nevada’s system of jurisprudence. The Court of Appeals will improve the environment of justice for all Nevadans by expanding access to our judicial system. I would like to congratulate the inaugural appointees and thank them for their willingness to serve their fellow Nevadans and their commitment to excellence in the administration of justice,” said Governor Brian Sandoval.

Jerry Tao currently serves as a Judge of the Eight District Court. He was originally appointed to the bench in January of 2011 by Governor Brian Sandoval. Tao received his undergraduate degree from Cornell University in New York and earned his Juris Doctorate from The George Washington University School of Law. He has worked as a prosecutor for the Clark County District Attorney’s Office, worked in private practice, and served as a public defender for the Clark County Public Defender’s Office. Governor Sandoval’s appointment of Tao follows his re-election to the Eight Judicial District Court in November which was the second time he has been approved by the voters of Clark County. Tao resides in Las Vegas where he is an active member of the community. Tao currently has the distinction of serving as the first Asian American District Court Judge in the Eight District Court.

“Judge Tao has an incredible work ethic and wide breadth of knowledge and experience. He has served as an outstanding District Court Judge in southern Nevada and I am confident that his level of service will rise to the Court of Appeals. I am proud to appoint Judge Jerry Tao to the Nevada Court of Appeals,” said Governor Sandoval.

Michael Patrick Gibbons currently serves as a District Court Judge of the Ninth Judicial District Court. Gibbons earned his associate’s degree from Cypress College in California, his undergraduate from the University of California, Los Angeles, and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Idaho College of Law. Gibbons formerly worked in the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office and ran his own private law practice. He was elected by his constituents four times to serve in the Ninth Judicial District Court. Michael Gibbons is an active member of his community. Gibbons has lived in Nevada for over 34 years and currently resides in Minden.

“Judge Gibbons has a long history of serving in the Ninth Judicial District Court having been elected by his constituents for four consecutive terms, spanning over two decades. He has built deep roots within the state and I am confident that he will serve all Nevadans well in his new role,” said Governor Sandoval.

Abbi Silver is a Judge of the Eighth Judicial District Court. Silver received her undergraduate degree from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and her Juris Doctorate from Southwestern University School of Law in California. She worked as a prosecutor with the Clark County District Attorney’s Office where she became the Chief Deputy District Attorney of the Special Victim’s Unit. Silver’s career on the bench began in 2003. Silver has previously been elected to the Las Vegas Municipal Court, the Las Vegas Township Justice Court and most recently elected to the Eighth Judicial District Court in 2009. Silver has been an active member of the legal community in Nevada. She currently resides in Las Vegas.

“Judge Silver has extensive trial experience as both a prosecutor and District Court Judge. She holds a deep understanding of Nevada’s judicial system and will bring a broad range of judicial experience having been elected to the Las Vegas Municipal Court, Las Vegas Township Court and the Eighth Judicial Court. Judge Silver was a tireless advocate for Nevadans as the Chief Deputy District Attorney of the Special Victim’s Unit and I am confident she will be just as passionate in her new role in the Court of Appeals,” concluded Sandoval.

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