Department 6 - Honorable Lynne K. Simons
BiographyBackground, Court Service and Education
Chief Judge Lynne K. Simons is deeply honored the citizens of Washoe County elected her to the Second Judicial District Court as District Judge, Department 6, in November 2014. She acceded to the judgeship in January 2015. In addition to her duties as a general jurisdiction District Judge, Judge Simons was designated by Chief Judge Scott Freeman to serve as Vice Chief of the Court for four (4) years and was unanimously elected by her colleagues as Chief Judge in December, 2021 and began her service as Chief Judge in January, 2022.
Chief Judge Simons also currently serves as the Specialty Court Liaison, alternate Probate and MAT Court Judge, and will preside over the Young Offenders Specialty Court docket. She previously served as the Presiding Alternative Dispute Resolution Judge. Chief Judge Simons serves or has served on the Court's Budget, Statistics, Legislative, Security, Rules, and Civil Bench Bar Committees as well as the State Court Statistics and State Legislative and State Specialty Court Funding Committee. As Chief Judge, she chairs the Judicial Council of the State of Nevada-Washoe Region, Washoe County Criminal Justice Advisory Commission, and the Washoe County Assembly Bill 424 and SB 369 Implementation Committees. She also sits on the Washoe County Law Library Board of Trustees. She previously served on the Nevada District Judges Association ("NDJA") Education Committee and is currently, and has for several years been, Treasurer of the NDJA. Additionally, Judge Simons is the Chair of the Nevada Board of Continuing Legal Education.
Chief Judge Simons is a graduate of Washoe County public schools. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology/Organizational Behavior from Stanford University (1983) and her Juris Doctorate from Pepperdine University School of Law (1986).
Chief Judge Simons is also a graduate of the National Institute of Trial Advocacy's Trial Advocacy Skills Professional Training Program. She has also served as Faculty Judge for the TIPS/ABOTA National Trial Academy for the past five (5) years.
Chief Judge Simons was admitted to practice in Nevada in 1986 and California in 1987. After law school, she served as law clerk to Judge Robert L. Schouweiler of the Second Judicial District Court. Thereafter, she joined Woodburn and Wedge, a Reno law firm, and the oldest firm in Nevada, where she worked for 17 years, culminating as a full shareholder and member of the firm's governing board of directors.
At Woodburn and Wedge, Chief Judge Simons practiced in all areas of complex civil, business and probate/trust litigation. Chief Judge Simons' trial practice included Nevada and California state and federal courts. She also practiced before the Nevada Supreme Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
In 2004, then Chief Judge James W. Hardesty of the Second Judicial District Court appointed Chief Judge Simons as Probate Commissioner/Court Master. Over the next three years, Chief Judge Simons presided over uncontested and contested probate and trust matters, including conducting numerous evidentiary hearings and extensive settlement conferences.
From 2009 to 2014, Chief Judge Simons worked as a solo practitioner specializing in mediation and serving as a receiver, consultant and expert witness in probate and trust matters. She also continued to serve as a special master for the Second Judicial District Court.
In 2014, Chief Judge Simons returned to Woodburn and Wedge serving as a private mediator.
Professional and Community Involvement
Throughout her career, Chief Judge Simons has actively participated in the legal community. She is currently a member of the Washoe County Bar Association, the Nevada State Bar Association, and the California State Bar Association; the Washoe County Probate Bar Association; the American Bar Association - Judiciary Branch; the National Institute of Trial Advocacy; and the Northern Nevada Women Lawyers Association.
Chief Judge Simons is deeply passionate about serving the citizens of Washoe County. Since the early days of her career, she has served on boards of and volunteered for numerous community organizations including the Washoe County Law Library Board of Trustees, the National Judicial College, among others. She currently volunteers for the Nevada Center for Civic Engagement's We the People - The Citizen and the Constitution high school competition, serving as a regional, state, and national judge.
Chief Judge Simons is committed to the Second Judicial District Court's mission to provide timely, fair and efficient administration of justice under the law, in a manner that instills and sustains the public's confidence in the judicial system. She will consistently strive to serve with judicial intellect, compassion, and in a manner that allows dignity to all who appear before her.
Chief Judge Simons is the proud mom of four children.