LAS VEGAS, NV — Nevada’s primary on June 9 will be an all-mail election in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19. Absentee ballots were sent out to registered voters on April 30.
Filipino-Americans are among those on the June 9 ballot — three of them vying for judicial posts.
Maricar “Rica” Andrade has been a practicing family court lawyer for 12 years and has been sitting as judge pro tem for 6 years. She is seeking a judicial post in the department ‘y’ of the family court division.
“On bench, you hear arguments on both sides and weigh their arguments and apply the facts to the law and you make a decision out of that. I like that part of it.”
When it comes to socio-civic work, Andrade co-founded Bamboo Bridges, a non-profit organization focused on stopping domestic violence and sexual assault cases in the Asian American community of southern Nevada.
“It takes 7 times for the victims to leave their abuser for good so still you see one person manipulating the other person using children that they often do and they go back to that relationship…We need to start young educating our children about the warning signs.”
Another Fil-am vying for judgeship is Caesar Almase, a former deputy public defender for Clark County. He is running for district court judge in department 21.
Almase said he wants to help and make a difference in people’s lives and be a positive influence in the community.
“Most Filipinos need to remember that unless they give a voice to what they want, they’re gonna remain silent. It’s true with other ethnic groups, but I think specifically Filipinos coming from the Philippines because of the experiences that they may have in the Philippines, the corruption and everything that goes along with that election, it’s not the same here in the United States, and if you want your voice to be heard you need to exercise your right to vote.”
Another Fil-Am vying for a judicial post is Gemma Nazareno Edquilang. She is running for family court judge in department ‘T’.
Edquilang has been an attorney for 18 years focusing on family law, general civil litigation, personal injury, estate planning, probate and immigration.
She has also worked as pro-bono attorney and served as a volunteer for the Children’s Attorney project.
The Nevada secretary of state said that voters will be able to mark their ballots at home and then return them by mail, using a postage prepaid envelope or by dropping them off at designated county locations.