Heart of My Community
I’ve had a heart for serving my community for as long as I can remember.
As a child, I dreamed of being a pediatrician. In high school I took medical courses and volunteered countless hours at local hospitals. In college, I worked in afterschool programs, focusing on education and socialization. I also volunteer tutored and taught Sunday school to preschoolers. Additionally, I provided care assistance to a nonverbal child on the autism spectrum. In law school, I became a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), a volunteer representing children in the abuse and neglect system. As a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, I’ve organized reading programs and mentored teenage girls through our Dr. Betty Shabazz Delta Academy. After becoming a mom, I saw the need to be directly involved in my children’s education because of my personal struggle in primary school. I served three years as an executive board member of Parent Teacher Association and one year on the Site Organizational Team (SOT). Currently, I mentor younger attorneys.
After high school, I passed State Boards and became a certified medical assistant, but the medical field no longer seemed my calling. Two years earlier, my teenage cousin died a tragic, unexpected death. As I grappled with my loss, I became interested in law. The law provides me the ability to help others and fight for what’s right. For over a decade, I’ve protected the constitutional rights of Clark County residents as a defense attorney. Every day I advocate for individuals, most of whom have long since been cast aside. In doing so, I provide checks and balances and safeguard constitutional freedoms of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Or, more specifically, the right to free speech and the right not to be unreasonably searched.
I’m running for District Court judge, Department 23, to continue to serve people. I understand the long-lasting effect of judges’ decisions on everyday people because my cousin’s death still affects me, decades later. I’ve seen first-hand how the law affects children in the abuse/neglect system, years later into adulthood. I’ve also seen first-hand how balanced decisions best serve our community. The reality is a staunch “tough on crime” approach doesn’t benefit society because at some point, criminals re-enter society from prison. We’ve witnessed this reality with recent criminal justice reform laws and bipartisan governments abolishing the death penalty all over the country. A balanced approach that weighs aggravating factors with mitigating factors benefits society economically and is the best weapon against recidivism.
A large percentage of people appearing before courts are people of color, yet our current bench lacks diversity. Diversity limits affinity bias and increases fairness. For civil and criminal cases, diversity helps ensure the issues brought before the court are adequately understood and not seen only from the bubble of privilege. I offer diversity (race, ethnicity, gender, life experience, upbringing).
As a trial lawyer I know the rules of evidence and have daily courtroom experience. As a litigator, I handle cases from beginning to end (including motion work and appeals) ranging from traffic to murder. I take civil cases pro bono. I have the commitment and work ethic to serve as the next judge in Department 23. In my courtroom, I promise equal access to justice, a listening ear and balanced rulings.
Family is one of the most important things to me. I am a mom of four and a wife to a Navy veteran. My greatest accomplishment in life is raising my four children (11, 9, 5, and 2) with my husband. I like to read, research, dance and travel. I pride myself on being a life learner, always striving to learn more and see other viewpoints.
2020 is a historical year, because of coronavirus and our ability to completely change politics as we know it. This is the first year black women have run for judge, without being appointed. You and I are making history. I stand for “Justice for You”. I ask that you stand with me, support me and share. Visit www.lilly-spells.com to learn more and find out how you can be a part of the team. I ask that you vote Jasmin Lilly-Spells, District Court, Department 23, on June 9th, 2020.