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Governor names Sam Chiara to 8th Judicial District bench

Sam Chiara looks forward to a new role in the judicial system.

Sun Advocate associate editor

Samuel P. Chiara, a 43-year-old Carbon County attorney, has been nominated by Gov. Gary Herbert to serve as a judge in Utah's Eighth Judicial District Court.

The appointment is subject to Utah Senate confirmation, which is expected in October.

Chiara earned his Juris Doctor degree at Brigham Young University's J. Reuben Clark Law School and began private practice in 1997. He has experience in contracts, property law, criminal defense, family law, personal injury and probate.

Community service

He has also served on the Carbon County School Board and as a volunteer instructor of business law at USU Eastern.

Chiara was also the prime mover in the restoration of Helper's Pony League baseball field, raising funds and organizing volunteers for the project. He and his son Kenneth have continued upkeep of the field.

Chiara says he has wanted to become a judge since his days as a law student. "In law school, you read a lot of cases and you come to admire and respect the great judges and their decisions," he explained. "Even though most cases don't get to court, the judge is a central figure in our judicial system. I look forward to serving in that role."

Will miss Carbon

He says he'll miss this community when to moves to a new home in the Eighth District, which includes Daggett, Duchesne and Uintah counties. He has not decided yet where the new home will be.

If approved by the Senate, Chiara will occupy a newly-created seat in that district. The case load has been growing in those counties, and judges from Carbon County's Seventh District have been commuting north several days a month to help out.

His appointment should lighten the load for the Seventh District, he noted.

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