Trial lawyer, judge advance in Nevada Supreme Court race

Chris Rizo Aug. 13, 2008, 6:00am

Mary "Kris" Pickering

Deborah Schumacher

CARSON CITY, Nev. (Legal Newsline)-A Las Vegas trial lawyer and a Washoe County family court judge won Tuesday's Supreme Court primary race, advancing for a chance to run for an upcoming open seat on the high court.

Attorney Mary "Kris" Pickering and Washoe District Court Judge Deborah Schumacher beat out two other candidates -- attorney Nancy Allf and former Clark County District Judge Don Chairez -- to run in the November general election.

With nearly all of the precincts reporting, Pickering won with about 25 percent of the vote. Schumacher had about 24 percent of the vote.
The winner of the general election will serve on the state's highest court for six years and earn an annual salary of $170,000.

The candidates are vying to replace Justice Bill Maupin, who announced in January that he would not seek election to a third six-year term.

During the campaign, Pickering touted that she has argued more cases before the Supreme Court than have her opponents. Schumacher has served in the family division since 1997. She touted her judicial experience during the primary.

Money gushed into the nonpartisan Supreme Court race for most of the candidates. Most of the candidates also opened their checkbooks to help bankroll their race.

Pickering, a partner in the law firm of Morris Pickering and Peterson,
raised $556,229, including $360,000 of her own money, while Schumacher raked in $317,740, including $150,000 of her own money.

Allf reported raising $489,387, including $271,000 in personal loans. Chairez's $135,000 loan was the only contribution his campaign reported.

Lackluster turnout was predicted for Tuesday's primary despite having several high-profile legislative and local races on ballots.

Elections officials predicted that only about 20 percent of the state's nearly 1.3 million eligible voters would cast ballots.

The secretary of state's office said 76,406 people cast ballots statewide through the end of the two-week early voting period Friday.

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo at

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