Dawn Throne has spent the last 23 years representing clients in all areas of Family Law – family law appeals, protective orders against domestic violence, divorce, custody, prenuptial agreements, post-divorce disputes, child support matters, guardianships of adults and minors, adoptions and probate. She is one of only 48 attorneys in the State of Nevada to be certified as a Family Law Specialists. She has argued before the Nevada Supreme Court. She regularly represents financially disadvantaged parties in Family Law matters on a pro bono basis. She loves the personal nature of family law cases and works tirelessly to advocate for her clients’ best interests and help them achieve positive outcomes.
Dawn has worked to hone her skills as a Family Law attorney and is an active member of the State Bar of Nevada. In May 2001, Dawn completed the intensive American Bar Association’s Family Law Advocacy Institute in Houston. She has heard protective order cases as a Pro Tem Hearing Master. She has been a Fee Dispute Arbitrator for the State Bar of Nevada for the last 16 years. She is a member of the Southern Nevada Disciplinary Board. She currently serves as the Vice-Chair of the Nevada Child Support Guidelines Committee.
Dawn spent her first 9 years of practice working for two full-service law firms, which allowed her to gain valuable experience in many other areas of the law. She has experience in civil litigation, business and commercial litigation, bankruptcy, employment law, administrative law, probate, estate and trust litigation and medical malpractice defense. She also prosecuted misdemeanor criminal matters and defended a few clients in misdemeanor criminal matters.
Life experience has only furthered Dawn’s passion for Family Law. As a child, Dawn grew up in a home where domestic violence and alcoholism were present. She experienced poverty growing up in a single-parent home after her mother gained the confidence to leave her abusive husband. As an adult, she helped her husband fight to be an involved parent in his son’s life and then to gain custody of his son from a mother who struggled with mental illness. She helped raise teenage stepchildren and is a mother to her own teenager now. She has been through the heartbreak of divorce herself and has experience with co-parenting with an ex-spouse. She has experienced the joy of a child calling her grandma.
In her free time, Dawn enjoys spending time with her daughter, which includes a shared passion for watching the Pittsburgh Steelers play, attending Church together, singing in the Church Choir, traveling to new places and learning. Dawn and her family have rescued three dogs – a Rottweiler named Elsa, a small mixed breed named Anna and a large mixed breed named Buster – which also keep them very busy.
As a result of these varied life experiences, in addition to 23 years of professional experience, she understands how parties in Family Court feel when they are forced to bring their very personal matters before a Family Court Judge to resolve. She understands how important it is to have the best Family Court Judges possible, who have the knowledge and experience to handle the complex issues parties bring before a Judge. Dawn has the knowledge and experience to make an excellent Family Court Judge.
What are the biggest changes you think we need to make to our justice system?
The biggest problem in our justice system today is the lack of mental health services. Not only do we not have enough mental health providers in Clark County, but there is still a significant stigma in our society to accessing mental health treatment. The litigants who take the most judicial resources are the ones with undiagnosed and/or untreated mental illness.
What is your philosophy on “judicial activism”, and what effect should judges have in setting or promoting public policy?
Our system of government in the United States and in Nevada depends on the proper separation of powers. Judges are not elected to create laws or set public policy. Judges swear to uphold and defend the Constitutions of the U.S. and Nevada and to me, that means observing the separation of powers and doing the job the voters elected you to do as a Judge.
Do you volunteer or are you involved in any charitable activities?
My volunteer work is through my Church and by serving the Nevada State Bar as a Fee Dispute Arbitrator for over 15 years, being a member of the Southern Nevada Disciplinary Board and as Vice-chair of the Nevada Committee to Review Child Support Guidelines.