Judges' Biographies


Judges' Biographies


CHIEF JUSTICE MATTHEW B. DURRANTChief Justice Matthew B. Durrant was appointed to the Utah Supreme Court in January 2000 by Governor Michael O. Leavitt. At the time, he was serving as a trial judge in the Third Judicial District. Justice Durrant has served as the Supreme Court representative on the Utah Judicial Council and as Associate Chief Justice. He was the founding chair of the Supreme Court's Professionalism Committee and has chaired the Judicial Council's Technology Committee. In addition, Justice Durrant chaired the Supreme Court Committee charged with the revision of the Code of Judicial Conduct. Justice Durrant received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 1984. After a clerkship with Judge Monroe G. McKay of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, Justice Durrant joined the Salt Lake law firm now known as Parr, Waddoups, Brown, Gee, & Loveless, where he was a shareholder at the time of his appointment to the district bench. Justice Durrant also has taught as an adjunct professor at Brigham Young University's J. Reuben Clark Law School. 1/12


ASSOCIATE CHIEF JUSTICE THOMAS R. LEEThomas R. Lee was appointed to the Utah Supreme Court by Governor Gary Herbert in July 2010. Before joining the Court, Justice Lee was the Rex & Maureen Rawlinson Professor of Law at the Brigham Young University law school, where he continues to serve on a part-time basis as Distinguished Lecturer in Law. Justice Lee graduated with high honors from the University of Chicago Law School in 1991. After law school, he served as a law clerk for Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson, III, of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and then for Justice Clarence Thomas of the United States Supreme Court. Justice Lee then joined the law firm now known as Parr, Brown, Gee & Loveless, where he became a shareholder before joining the law faculty at BYU. During his years as a full-time law professor, Justice Lee maintained a part-time intellectual property litigation practice with Howard, Phillips, & Andersen. He also developed a part-time appellate practice, arguing numerous cases in federal courts throughout the country and in the United States Supreme Court. In 2004 - 05, Justice Lee served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. 8/11


JUSTICE CHRISTINE M. DURHAMJustice Christine Durham has been on the Utah Supreme Court since 1982, and served as Chief Justice and Chair of the Utah Judicial Council from 2002 to 2012. She previously served on the state trial court after a number of years in private practice. She received her A.B. with honors from Wellesley College and a J.D. from Duke University, where she is an emeritus member of the Board of Trustees. She is the past president of the Conference of Chief Justices of the United States, and also the past chair of the American Bar Association's Council on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, the entity that accredits American law schools. She is a member of the Council of the American Law Institute, the Board of Overseers for the Rand Corporation's Institute for Civil Justice, and is a Fellow of the American Bar Association. Past professional service includes the governing boards of the American Inns of Court Foundation, the Appellate Judges Conference of the ABA, the ABA's Commission on Women in the Profession, and the Federal Judicial Conference's Advisory Committee on the Rules of Civil Procedure. She is also a past president of the National Association of Women Judges, and was that organization's Honoree of the Year in 1997. Justice Durham has been active in judicial education, and was a founder of the Leadership Institute in Judicial Education. She helped create and lead the Utah Coalition for Civic Character and Service Education and served on the Utah Commission on Civic Education. She was an adjunct professor for many years at the University of Utah College of Law, teaching state constitutional law, and served for twelve years on the Utah Constitutional Revision Commission. She has received honorary degrees from four Utah universities and has been recognized nationally for her work in judicial education and efforts to improve the administration of justice. In 2007, she received the William H. Rehnquist Award for Judicial Excellence; and in 2008 she received the "Transparent Courthouse" Award for contributions to judicial accountability and administration from the Institute for the Advancement of the Legal System at the University of Denver. In September 2012, Justice Durham received the Eighth Annual Dwight D. Opperman Award for Judicial Excellence from the American Judicature Society. Justice Durham recently served on the ABA's Task Force on the Future of Legal Education, and is currently serving as a member of the Advisory Board for the Educating Tomorrow's Lawyers Project of the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System, and of the Board of Directors for University of the People, an accredited tuition-free online global university (www.UoPeople.edu). 6/14


JUSTICE CONSTANDINOS  HIMONASJustice Constandinos "Deno" Himonas was appointed to the Utah Supreme Court in February 2015 by Governor Gary Herbert. Prior to this, he served as a judge in the Third District Court from June 2004 to his appointment to the Utah Supreme Court. Judge Himonas graduated Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Utah in 1986 and received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago in 1989. Upon graduating from law school, Judge Himonas returned to Utah and spent 15 years working as a litigator for the law firm of Jones, Waldo, Holbrook, and McDonough, where he focused on complex civil litigation. Judge Himonas is a past chairperson of the Litigation Section of the Utah State Bar and former Associate Presiding Judge for the Third District Court. He serves as the co-chair of the Third District's Pro Bono Committee and as a member of the Judicial Conduct Commission. 2/15


JUSTICE JILL N. PARRISHJustice Jill N. Parrish was appointed to the Utah Supreme Court by Governor Michael O. Leavitt in January of 2003. After receiving her law degree from the Yale Law School in 1985, Justice Parrish completed a judicial clerkship with the Honorable David K. Winder of the United States District Court for the District of Utah. Thereafter, she joined the Salt Lake City law firm of Parr, Waddoups, Brown Gee & Loveless, where she focused her practice on commercial litigation. She became a shareholder in the firm in 1990. From 1995 until her appointment to the Supreme Court, Justice Parrish served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Civil Division of the United States Attorney's Office for the District of Utah, where she supervised the Financial Litigation Unit. Justice Parrish is currently a member of the Utah Judicial Council. She also serves as chair of the State Law Library Oversight Committee. Justice Parrish is a past president of the Utah Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. 9/11

Page Last Modified: 3/27/2014
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