Brian Sandoval

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Brian Sandoval
Brian Sandoval Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic.jpg
Governor of Nevada
In office
January 3, 2011 - Present
Years in position 4
Bachelor'sUniversity of Nevada, Reno (1996)
J.D.The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law
Date of birthAugust 5, 1963
Place of birthRedding, California
ReligionRoman Catholicism
Office website
Personal website
Brian Edward Sandoval (born August 5, 1963) is the current Republican Governor of Nevada and a former judge of the United States District Court for the District of Nevada.[1] Prior to his service as a federal judge, he served as the Nevada Attorney General, the youngest chairman of the Nevada Gaming Commission and a state legislator. Sandoval was also the first Hispanic candidate elected to statewide office in Nevada.[1]


Brian Sandoval is a native of Redding, California, though he is a long time resident of Reno, where he completed high school. In college, he studied English and economics, as well as joining the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. After earning his Bachelor's, Sandoval attended law school in Ohio. He was admitted to the bar in both California and Nevada and briefly worked for several Reno area firms before opening his own law office.

In August 2012, he was included in a list of 20 Latino political rising stars compiled by the San Francisco Chronicle.[2]


  • The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, JD, 1989
  • University of Nevada, B.A., 1986
  • Bishop Manogue High School, 1981

Political career

Governor of Nevada (2011-Present)

Sandoval was first elected Governor of Nevada in 2010 and assumed office on January 3, 2011. As governor, Sandoval is responsible for appointing judges to Nevada state courts. In Nevada, the governor makes a judicial appointment after candidates are recommended by a judicial nominating commission. After the governor appoints a judge, she or he must run for the seat in the next general election. For an up-to-date list of all of Sandoval's appointees, see Judgepedia's page on his appointments.

No new taxes or fee hikes

Before his inauguration as Governor of Nevada, Sandoval's Chief of Staff Heidi Gansert said he would not bring new taxes or fee hikes to the citizens of Nevada.

“Given the state of our economy, the governor-elect has decided there will be no new fees or taxes in the budget,” she said. “We don’t want any obstacles to an economic recovery. We want as much money as possible spent in the private sector.”

Gansert said Sandoval’s staff is working with Budget Director Andrew Clinger to go through the budget prepared by outgoing Gov. Jim Gibbons. They want to ensure any fee increases included in the plan are eliminated.

Robin Reedy, chief of staff to Gibbons, said a case could be made to seek fee increases for services provided by the state that are not fully covered by current assessments.[3]

Mental health costs and budget 2011-13

In 2011, Sandoval proposed to transfer the state share of operating the mental health courts to the counties. Democrat lawmakers rejected the proposal in mid-May 2011, meaning the addition of another $6 million hole in the two-year budget, starting July 1, 2011.

The party-line vote by members of the Assembly Ways and Means and Senate Finance committees came after repeated testimony from advocates for the courts since the session began that they would close without continued state support because of the fiscal problems the counties face.

Sandoval has proposed eliminating the $3 million a year in general fund state support for the courts operating in Clark and Washoe counties and Carson City. County officials would have to pick up the costs to continue the programs.[4]

Judge of the District Court for the District of Nevada (2005-2009)

Sandoval was appointed to the United States District Court for the District of Nevada by President George W. Bush on October 26, 2005. He served on the court until September 15, 2009.

Nevada Attorney General (2003-2005)

Sandoval announced his bid to succeed three-term Democrat Frankie Sue Del Papa -- who decided not to seek re-election -- as Nevada Attorney General on October 11, 2001. His primary major party opposition was Democratic attorney John Hunt from Las Vegas, Nevada|Las Vegas, who Sandoval defeated by a margin of 58.32% to 33.63% on November 5, 2002.[5] Sandoval took office on January 6, 2003.

While Attorney General, Sandoval led the state's legal fight against the storage nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, developed Nevada's first Public Integrity Unit and sponsored legislation strengthening Nevada's laws against domestic violence, drug abuse and human trafficking.

As Attorney General, Sandoval was also the chairman and a member of several state boards and commissions, including the Nevada Boards of Pardons, Prisons, Transportation, and Examiners, the Cyber-Crime Task Force, the Committee on Domestic Violence and the Prosecutorial Advisory Council. He was also the chairman and a member of several state boards and commissions, including the Nevada Boards of Pardons, Prisons, Transportation, and Examiners, the Nevada Cyber-Crime Task Force, and the Prosecutorial Advisory Council.

Nevada Gaming Commission (1998-2001)

In 1998 Sandoval was appointed to serve as a member of the Nevada Gaming Commission, which oversees the state's gaming industry. The following year, at the age of 35, Sandoval became the youngest person ever to serve as chairman of the gaming commission. During his time on the commission, Sandoval fought national efforts to block gambling on college sports events, worked on regulations limiting neighborhood gaming and worked for regulations prohibiting slot machines with themes attractive to children.

Nevada State Assembly (1994-1998)

Sandoval first ran for elected office in 1994, and served two terms in the Nevada Assembly -- representing the 25th legislative district -- from 1994 to 1998. In the Assembly, Sandoval served on the Judiciary, Taxation and Natural Resources Committees and sponsored 14 bills that became law -- including bills that prevented felons from suing victims if they are injured committing a crime, increased the penalties for operating a boat under the influence, and allowed indigent defendants to perform community service to defray their legal costs.

While in the Nevada legislature, Sandoval also served on the Nevada Legislative Commission, the Advisory Commission on Sentencing, the Juvenile Justice Commission, the Advisory Council on Community Notification of Sex Offenders and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Oversight Committee.


Presidential preference


See also: Endorsements by state officials of presidential candidates in the 2012 election

Brian Sandoval endorsed Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential election. [6] He had previously endorsed Rick Perry.[7]



See also: Nevada gubernatorial election, 2010

Sandoval announced his bid to enter the governor's race on August 15, 2009, citing concern about how the state was being run. He ousted incumbent Republican Governor Jim Gibbons in the primary and went on to defeat Rory Reid, son of the U.S. Senate Majority Leader, in the general election.[8]

Campaign donors

Ballotpedia collects information on campaign donors for each year in which a candidate or incumbent is running for election. The following table offers a breakdown of Brian Sandoval's donors each year.[9] Click [show] for more information.


Throughout his career, Sandoval has received several awards and certificates, including the Hispanics in Politics' 1996 "Broche de Oro Award", the Anti-Defamation League's 2003 "Torch of Liberty Award," the Nevada State Bar's 2004 "Access to Justice Public Lawyer Award," The Latino Coalition's 2004 "Most Influential Hispanic in the U.S. Award" and the 2004 [University of Nevada "Alumnus of the Year Award."

He and his wife, Kathleen, have three children.

See also

External links

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