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Richard Deitz

North Carolina Court of Appeals
Judge Dietz grew up in a small town family of railroad and telephone workers. He was the first in his family to attend college.

Judge Dietz graduated first in his class from Wake Forest University School of Law, which he attended on a full academic scholarship. After law school, Judge Dietz served as a law clerk for two prominent federal judges and then taught himself Japanese and spent a year as a research fellow at Kyushu University in Japan, teaching Japanese students and academics about the U.S. Constitution and other aspects of U.S. law.

After returning to the U.S., Judge Dietz began a long career handling high-profile trial and appellate work in courts across the country. As a partner at Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP, a 650-lawyer international law firm with its roots in North Carolina, Judge Dietz gained significant trial and appellate experience.

Judge Dietz has argued in the U.S. Supreme Court and other state and federal courts across the nation. He is the only state appellate judge or candidate who has personally argued before the High Court.

Judge Dietz has handled trials and appeals in a wide range of legal areas, including constitutional law, complex business law, criminal law, family law, and tort law. He has also represented a broad array of clients, from Fortune 500 companies to low-income families and indigent criminal defendants.

Judge Dietz is a North Carolina board certified specialist in Appellate Practice. He is one of only two judges on the 15-member Court of Appeals who is an appellate specialist, and one of only 29 lawyers in the entire State.

Judge Dietz served as vice chair of the North Carolina Bar Association’s Appellate Practice Section and currently serves on the Appellate Practice Section Council. He has served for six years on the Bar Association’s Appellate Rules Committee, a group of lawyers and judges who review the state’s appellate rules and draft proposed changes.

Judge Dietz also served as a member of the North Carolina Courts Commission, a group of judges, lawyers, legislators, and private citizens who study and recommend changes to the court system.