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Municipal Court Department 5

Cedric A. Kerns

Judge Cedric A. Kerns was elected to the Las Vegas Municipal Court, Department 5 in June of 1997.

Judge Kerns came to Las Vegas in 1985 to attend the University of Nevada Las Vegas where he was a member of the nationally ranked debate team before graduating in 1989. He received his Juris Doctor in 1992 from the University of San Diego.

Prior to being elected, Judge Kerns was a partner and co-founder of the Law Office of Kerns and Lybarger, where he focused on criminal defense and domestic litigation. While in private practice, Judge Kerns was an appointed member of the Nevada Supreme Court Task Force for the “Study of Economic Bias” in the justice system.

Judge Kerns is a member of the American Judges Association where he has served as delegate and governor representing the state of Nevada. He is also a member of the Nevada Judges of Limited Jurisdiction where he served as a member of the Board of Directors as well as the President for the year 2005. Judge Kerns was chosen as Outstanding Judge of the Year for 2006 by the Nevada Judges Association.

Because of his work on the bench, Judge Kerns received the “2009 Community Partner Award” from the Foundation for Recovery.  In 2013, he received the “Visionary Award” from community counseling center for his work with families in the Youth Offender court.  Also in 2013, the Nevada Supreme Court recognized Judge Kerns with the “Legacy of Justice Award” making him the first limited jurisdiction judge to receive this recognition. The award is given to a person in the judicial system whose contributions, innovations and achievements resulted in significant improvements to the judicial system.  In 2016, Judge Kerns became the recipient of the Foundation for Recovery’s “Brick” award, the highest honor bestowed by the Foundation.

Judge Kerns started working with specialty courts in 2004 with his development and implementation of the specialized H.O.P.E. Court that focuses on habitual offenders.

Currently, Judge Kerns is the presiding judge over Las Vegas Municipal Court’s Young Offender Court. This is a specialized court that he created that focuses on offenders between the ages of 18-24, and their families, who find their way into the court system while suffering with addiction issues. 

Judge Kerns is married to Rebecca and has four children.