John Pearce confirmed by Senate as Utah Supreme Court justice

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SALT LAKE CITY — The state Senate unanimously confirmed John Pearce as a Utah Supreme Court justice Wednesday.

Gov. Gary Herbert nominated Pearce for the job last month. Pearce worked as general counsel to the governor for four years before Herbert appointed him to the Utah Court of Appeals in October 2013.

Sen. Todd Weiler, R-Woods Cross, said Pearce adds a unique perspective to the court.

"His background and experience, I think, will bring a whole new element to the Supreme Court that we've probably never had before," he said. "I think he's brilliant. He's distinguished himself in his short time on the court of appeals."

A native of Magna, Pearce, 46, graduated from Cyprus High School and got a degree in economics from the University of Utah. He earned his law degree from the University of California at Berkeley.

He has been an adjunct professor at the U.'s S.J. Quinney College of Law and was a shareholder at Jones Waldo Holbrook & McDonough from 1999 to 2009. He and his wife, Jennifer Napier-Pearce, have two sons.

Pearce replaces Jill Parrish, who was recently appointed as a federal judge. He is Herbert's third appointee to the five-member Utah Supreme Court, and the second in the past year.

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