Governor Appoints Pearce to Appellate Court

SALT LAKE CITY – Governor Gary R. Herbert has appointed John A. Pearce to fill a vacancy on the Utah Court of Appeals.

“John’s extraordinary legal acumen, successful background and keen intellect well qualify him to serve on the bench,” said Governor Herbert.  “His solid judgment and integrity will benefit the people of Utah.  I am pleased to appoint an individual of his caliber to the court.”

“It has been as honor to serve the state for the past four years in the Governor’s Office.  I am grateful the Governor has provided the opportunity to continue that service on the Court of Appeals.”

Pearce presently serves as general counsel to the Governor, a post he has held since 2009, where he advises the Governor and Cabinet on legal, legislative and policy issues. He is also an adjunct professor of law for the S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah. From 1999 to 2009, Pearce represented clients in a variety of litigation matters with the Salt Lake City firm of Jones Waldo Holbrook & McDonough. He also served on the firm’s executive committee, overseeing daily operations.

He received his Juris Doctor in 1996 from the University of California, Berkeley, where he was a research assistant to acclaimed legal scholar Stephen Barnett.  In 1992 Pearce completed his Bachelor of Science in economics magna cum laude from the University of Utah, after graduating from Cyprus High School in Magna.  He also litigated class-action securities fraud and trade secret cases for the California firm of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati from 1996 to 1999.

Notable accolades from Pearce’s legal career include being listed by Utah Business Magazine as one of Utah’s Legal Elite and receiving the Martindale-Hubbell AV 5.0 Peer Review Rating. Fluent in Spanish, he has served on the Salvation Army Citizen Advisory Committee and the Salt Lake County Bar Executive Committee.

Pearce fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge William A Thorne, Jr., on September 15, 2013. The Governor’s appointment is subject to confirmation by the Utah State Senate.