Assemblyman Wesley Duncan, R-Las Vegas, is resigning his seat to become the chief assistant of Attorney General-elect Adam Laxalt, Laxalt’s transition team announced Friday.
Duncan is an Iraq war veteran, who like Laxalt worked as a judge advocate general with the Iraqi court system to assist in prosecuting al-Qaida and other extremist groups in Baghdad. Duncan is an Air Force Reservist and deputy district attorney in Clark County.
Duncan, who was born in 1980 in California, was stationed at Nellis Air Force base during 54 months of active duty. He and his wife then decided to stay in Nevada to raise their two children.
Duncan will serve as Laxalt’s chief assistant attorney general when Laxalt takes office on Jan. 5.
Laxalt also named Nicholas Trutanich as his chief of staff. Trutanich for the past six years has been a federal prosecutor in the U.S. attorney’s office in Los Angeles, where he has served in the Violent and Organized Crime and National Security sections. He, too, did a stint in Iraq as a deputy justice attache, providing legal counsel to counter-terrorism prosecutions and working the Iraqi judiciary.
Trutanich has known Laxalt since they went to school in Washington, D.C.
“I am honored to have been asked by Attorney General-Elect Laxalt to serve the people of Nevada,” Trutanich said. “Since our days together at Georgetown, I have witnessed Adam’s commitment to the law and to serving others. I am eager to get started so that, along with Adam and Wes, we can work to provide a more safe and secure Nevada.”
In a statement, Laxalt said “Both Wesley Duncan and Nicholas Trutanich are outstanding lawyers, prosecutors and public servants. Together, they will serve the citizens of Nevada well and I am extremely proud to have both of these talented individuals on my team.”
Duncan said joining Laxalt allows him to do more.
“It has been an honor and privilege serving my constituents in Assembly District 37,” Duncan said in a statement. “After discussing this unique opportunity with my family, I have decided to resign my Assembly seat so that I may serve all Nevadans in this new, critically-important position.”
Duncan first won election to the Assembly in 2012 and was re-elected for another two years earlier this month. He was in contention to become speaker of the Assembly after Republicans won majority control of the body in the November election, gaining a 25-17 seat advantage over Democrats.
Duncan was named chairman of the Assembly Judiciary Committee by Ira Hansen, R-Sparks, who resigned last week as incoming speaker after he was criticized for using racist and sexist language in a series of columns he wrote in the Sparks Tribune.
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