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Vance Peterson
Born 1953 (age 67–68)
Allegiance United States
Service/branch

 United States Army

Years of service 1975-2003
2011-2012
Rank US-O5 insignia.svg Lieutenant Colonel[1]
Unit

12th Special Forces Group

Security Force Assistance Team[2]
Battles/wars Vietnam War[3]
Operation Enduring Freedom – Afghanistan[4]
Other work Lawyer[5]
District Court Judge[5]

Vance Peterson (born in 1953) is a retired United States Army lieutenant colonel and a district court judge in Spokane County, Washington.[6]

Biography[]

Peterson enlisted in the United States Army in 1975, and became a Special Forces operator in 1979.[6] Peterson was discharged from active duty in 1979, joined the Washington Army National Guard, and began studying law at Gonzaga University; he began practicing law in 1982.[6] Eventually he earned a Master's Degree from Webster University, and a J.D. from Gonzaga.[5] Since 1999, Peterson has served as a faculty member at Washington State Judicial College.[5] In 2003, he received a mandatory military retirement at the rank of lieutenant colonel after having served 28 years in the Army and the National Guard.[6]

In 1998, Peterson became a judge for Spokane District Court;[2] his efforts led to the establishment of a Veterans' court in Spokane County in 2010.[7] The court is funded with a $1 million grant awarded in 2011, which will pay for its operations for three years; only one of the offenders who have been adjudicated through the Veterans' Court has been convicted of additional criminal acts.[6]

In 2011, Peterson was recalled to active duty and served as an operations adviser to Afghan Police near Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan.[4] In Afghanistan Peterson mentored the Chief of police of Mazar-i- Sharif, helping the police transition away from being a paramilitary force to focusing on law enforcement; at the time he was the only active judge on a security force assistance team.[2] In 2012 Peterson returned to the United States, suffering from war-related ailments, and returned to his position as a judge.[4] In 2013, the Washington State Bar Association awarded Peterson its Local Hero Award.[8]

References[]

  1. "Congressional Record - Senate". U.S. Government Printing Office. 26 February 1996. http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CREC-1996-02-26/pdf/CREC-1996-02-26-senate.pdf. Retrieved 28 April 2013. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Chris Stein (30 May 2012). "Holding Court". pp. 13–15. Archived from the original on 31 May 2012. http://npaper-wehaa.com/inlander/2012/05/31/#?article=1593193. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
  3. Jeff Humphrey (8 September 2011). "Vet Court Helps Former Servicemen Clean Up Their Acts". http://www.kxly.com/news/Vet-Court-Helps-Former-Servicemen-Clean-Up-Their-Acts/-/101270/677198/-/11rqrca/-/index.html. Retrieved 28 April 2013. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Jamie Tobias Neely (11 November 2012). "War’s reality hits home". http://m.spokesman.com/stories/2012/nov/11/wars-reality-hits-home/. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 "District Court, Spokane, WA - Department 1". Spokane County. 19 December 2012. http://www.spokanecounty.org/districtcourt/content.aspx?c=1278. Retrieved 28 April 2013. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Thomas Clouse (21 April 2013). "Army boots off, Spokane judge returns to court". Gannett Government Media. http://www.armytimes.com/article/20130421/NEWS/304210012/Army-boots-off-Spokane-judge-returns-court. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
    Thomas Clouse (21 April 2013). "Army boots off, Spokane judge returns to court". http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Army-boots-off-Spokane-judge-returns-to-court-4451614.php. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
    Thomas Clouse (21 April 2013). "Veteran District Court judge adjusts to civilian life". http://m.spokesman.com/stories/2013/apr/21/honorable-recharge/. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
  7. Kevin Graman (20 September 2010). "Special courts in Wash. designed for veterans". http://www.armytimes.com/article/20100920/NEWS/9200313/Special-courts-in-Wash-designed-for-veterans. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
  8. "Army boots off, Spokane judge returns to bench". 21 April 2013. http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2020833192_apwajudgeveteran.html. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 

External links[]

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