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Nominees Announced for Summit County Justice Court Vacancy

The Summit County Judicial Nominating Commission has selected three nominees for a justice court judge position that will serve Summit County, Utah. The final candidate will replace Judge Shauna Kerr who will retire next month. 

Following is an alphabetical listing of the nominees followed by type of employment and city  of residence:  

• Janet Elledge, J.D., Attorney at Law, resident of Cottonwood Heights,  

• Mark Flores, J.D., Attorney at Law, resident of Salt Lake City, and  

• Brook J. Sessions, J.D., Justice Court Judge for Lindon and Wasatch County, resident of Heber.  

A comment period will be held through December 17, 2023. Once application materials are provided to the Summit County Manager, he will have 30 days to make a final selection. His selection must then be ratified by the Summit County Council. To submit written comments about any of the nominees, please email James Peters, Justice Court Administrator, at  jamesp@utcourts.gov.  

Brian Bolinder Appointed to Seventh District Bench

Utah Gov. Spencer J. Cox has appointed Brian Bolinder to the Seventh District Court, filling the vacancy left by Judge George Harmond’s retirement. Bolinder’s nomination requires confirmation by the Utah Senate. 

“I appreciate Brian’s willingness to enter public service and have confidence in his ability to serve the people of the Seventh District Court well,” Gov. Cox said. “I look forward to his confirmation.”

Bolinder is currently a shareholder at Richards Brandt Miller Nelson in Salt Lake City where he specializes in construction, business, real property and tort litigation. He previously served as an associate at Suitter Axland, Salt Lake City, and is past chair of the construction section of the Utah State Bar. He’s also been recognized by Mountain States Super Lawyers and Utah Business Magazine Legal Elite. Since 2016, Bolinder has served as a judge pro tempore in Salt Lake City Justice Court handling small claims matters.  

“It is an honor and a privilege to be appointed by Gov. Cox to serve the Seventh District as a District Court Judge. I am humbled and grateful for this opportunity to return to southeastern Utah and serve the citizens of Carbon, Emery, Grand, and San Juan Counties both inside and outside the courthouse,” Bolinder said. “If I am confirmed by the Senate, I will diligently, faithfully, and fairly apply the law in all matters before me while ensuring neutrality and respect is provided to those with whom I interact.”

A native of Ferron, Bolinder has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Utah in Political Science with a minor in Russian, and a juris doctorate from the S.J. Quinney School of Law at the University of Utah. 

Nominations Sought for Utah State Bar Commission Elections

Nominations to the office of Bar Commissioner are hereby solicited for:
–Three members from the Third Division (Salt Lake, Summit, and Tooele Counties)
–One member from the Fourth Division (Wasatch, Utah, Juab and Millard Counties)
Bar Commissioners serve a three-year term. Terms will begin in July 2024.
To be eligible for the office of Commissioner from a division, the nominee’s business mailing address must be in that division as shown by the records of the Bar. Applicants must be nominated by a written petition of ten or more members of the Bar in good standing whose business mailing addresses are in the division from which the election is to be held.  
Nominating petitions are available at https://www.utahbar.org/bar-operations/election-information/.  Completed petitions must be submitted to Christy Abad (cabad@utahbar.org), Executive Assistant, no later than February 1, 2024 by 5:00 p.m.

Gov. Cox Nominates Steve Nelson to Third District Court

Utah Gov. Spencer J. Cox has appointed Stephen Nelson to the Third District Court, replacing Judge Randall Skanchy’s vacancy. Nelson’s nomination requires confirmation by the Utah Senate. 

“I appreciate Stephen’s willingness to take on this new responsibility,” Gov. Cox said. “I am confident that his experience and intellect will serve the people of the Third District Court well for years to come.”

Nelson is currently an Assistant United States Attorney in the national security section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Utah where he has worked since 2016. In this role, Nelson has prosecuted organized crime, violent crime and narcotics. 

Prior to his current assignment, Nelson served for 11 years as a deputy district attorney in the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office and for two years as an assistant attorney general in the Utah Attorney General’s Office. Nelson is also an assistant professor (lecturer) in the University of Utah’s Department of Political Science.

“I am truly humbled, honored, and grateful to receive this appointment. I have significant respect for the institution of the Utah Judiciary, and, specifically, the important work done every day in the courtrooms of the Third District Court where I worked for many years,” Nelson said. “If I’m fortunate enough to be confirmed, I will diligently strive to uphold the District Court’s institutional legacy of fairness, integrity, respect, and fidelity to the law.”   

Nelson has a bachelor’s degree from Westminster College in Economics, a juris doctorate from the University of Utah’s S.J. Quinney College of Law, and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Utah.

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