Following her victory over the other two candidates, Patricia Lee made history by becoming the first Black and Asian American attorney to hold the vacant Department F seat on the Nevada Supreme Court.
Lee was chosen by Gov. Sisolak from among the candidates put out by the state Judicial Selection Committee to take the place of Justice Abbi Silver, who resigned from her position due to “unexpected circumstances” and a desire to spend enough time with her family.
Being an attorney in Las Vegas, Lee contended with Washoe County District Judge Scott Freeman and Clark County District Judge Tierra Jones.
The Reno Gazette-Journal cited Sisolak saying, “I am thrilled and honored to appoint Patricia to serve on the Nevada Supreme Court. The breadth and depth of her skill set, as well as her personal and professional experience, make her an excellent addition to the State’s highest court.”
Lee will begin serving her term in January 2025 and must run for reelection in two years in order to preserve her position.
Lee’s mother, a native South Korean, and father, an African-American soldier, brought her up in South Korea. She majored in psychology and communications at the University of Southern California, where she also participated in the Black Students’ Union and had her first political experience.
She started working at Hutchison & Steffan in 2003, concentrating on family law, trademark law, medical claims billing, and business and commercial disputes. She later joined the firm as a partner.
Lee is a skilled attorney with a history of being chosen as the chair of the Nevada Crime Commission by the then-Gov. Jim Gibbons, a volunteer with the Children’s Attorney Project in Las Vegas who advocates for abused and abandoned children, has handled pro bono cases at the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada.
Nonetheless, Lee is not just a dedicated lawyer but also a devoted family woman being a mother to Brianna and Devin, and a wife to Ronnie.