Douglas’ longest serving judge announces Oct. 5 retirement

Tahoe Township Justice of the Peace Richard Glasson takes the oath of office administered by outgoing East Fork Justice of the Peace Tom Perkins on Jan. 4, 2019.

Tahoe Township Justice of the Peace Richard Glasson takes the oath of office administered by outgoing East Fork Justice of the Peace Tom Perkins on Jan. 4, 2019.
Photo by Kurt Hildebrand.

Douglas County’s longest-serving judge announced on Thursday he plans to retire Oct. 5.

Tahoe Township Justice of the Peace Richard Glasson announced his plans to Douglas County commissioners.

“I do not want the county to be caught off guard,” he told commissioners. “I selected that date and time because you have a commission meeting later that morning. So, you will be able to have on your agenda a motion to approve a qualified person to serve out the balance of my term.”

After hearing Glasson’s announcement, Douglas County Commission Chairman Mark Gardner said he wanted to thank him for is service.

Glasson was re-elected to his current six-year term in 2018.

"I intended to retire more than two years ago, but the COVID crisis, making sure that my court operations remained steady, helping to keep other courts operating due to judicial absences and conflicts, migrating to a new operating system, making appropriate provisions for newly imposed civil traffic courts and ensuring the continuation court and community service programs delayed things. Remodeling my home during the snowpocalypse didn’t help."

First elected in 2000, he is only the fourth person to serve in the seat since the township’s creation in 1947.

"I have been blessed to have the most knowledgeable, capable, helpful and caring judicial support team one could imagine."

District Judge Tod Young said he will miss Glasson.

“He has consistently been a source of wisdom and creativity for our county,” Young said. “Judge Glasson has been a statewide leader and educator for the all of the state’s judiciary. He has taught and mentored hundreds of judges in his career and he has certainly improved our system of justice.”

Young said that it has been a pleasure working with Glasson over the years.

“Judge Glasson has brought thoughtful and caring ideas to advance our local judiciary,” he said. “He was a vital part of modernizing the local judicial branch of government and has been dedicated to bringing efficiency and transparency to the courts, all with the purpose of promoting the ideals in our Constitution. I will miss him on the bench but will be certain to still find time to share a taco or two with him. I am proud to be his friend.”

On Wednesday, District Attorney Mark Jackson said he has known Glasson for nearly three decades.

“When we were both in private practice in the 1990s, we had several cases where we were opposing counsel,” Jackson said. “He was an exceptional trial lawyer and a tenacious advocate for his clients.”

Jackson said he started at the District Attorney’s Office the same week Glasson donned judicial robes. In those days, prosecutors were assigned to the Lake Tahoe Office on a six-month rotational basis.

“I served several of those rotations over my first six years as a prosecutor,” Jackson said. “I had more than one hundred bench trials that Judge Glasson presided over during that time. He is one of the most knowledgeable judges on the rules of evidence. Judge Glasson has a keen understanding of the legal aspects of the judicial branch, and he has used his knowledge and experience in innovative ways for the past 23 years.”

In 2020, Nevada’s judges of limited jurisdiction came together virtually to honor Glasson with the association’s lifetime achievement award.

Glasson moved to Lake Tahoe the day after he graduated high school on the San Francisco Peninsula. He left the area to attend college and McGeorge School of Law.


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