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The Author | Legal Work

   Joan Nockels Wilson

Joan Nockels Wilson has practiced as a civil and criminal litigator in Alaska for twenty-five years. She spent half her career in private practice working as a health care lawyer in the Anchorage offices of the Seattle based  Davis Wright Tremaine LLP and the Washington D.C. based Sonosky Chambers Sachse Munson and Miller and as the Chief Ethics Officer at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. Her passion, however, is in public service, where she serves today.  As an Assistant District Attorney, Joan primarily prosecuted felony domestic violence in the Violent Crimes Unit, but also developed a specialty in prosecution of animal cruelty cases, a subset of domestic violence since perpetrators often use animals as extensions of their family victims. Joan achieved the longest sentence for animal cruelty in the State of Alaska and contributed to the State of Alaska’s successful effort to elevate animal cruelty from a misdemeanor to a felony in the most egregious of circumstances. 


Joan has also prosecuted Medicaid Fraud as part of the Office of Special Prosecution and Appeals, Medicaid Fraud Unit. She was a member of an excellent trial team that recently sentenced “the hoverboard dentist” to over 12 years of active prison time for defrauding the State of $2.1 million and causing reckless injury to his patients through mass and excessive patient sedation. She and her trial team were recently awarded the 2021 United States Department of Health and Human Services, Inspector General Award for Excellence in Promoting Quality, Safety, and Value. 

Acting on personal belief that a lawyer’s brain should continue to be challenged in order to be engaged, Joan changed her career specialty recently. She currently serves as a Senior Assistant Attorney General for the State of Alaska advising the State’s Alcoholic Beverage and Marijuana Control Board as well as the Division of Agriculture. She is a contributing author to The Cannabis Law Deskbook, which will be published by Thomson Reuters in September 2021. 


Joan clerked for the Honorable H. Russel Holland, Federal District Judge for the United States, District of Alaska (the judge of Exxon Valdez fame) and was graduated magna cum laude from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis and Clark College in 1996. 

The following are news stories that address Joan's legal work:

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