Judge Richelle M. Wahi

Dakota County Courthouse
First Judicial District
(651) 438-8100

Chambers Phone: (651) 438-8100

First Judicial District Judicial Officers

Judge Richelle M. Wahi


Appointed Feb. 26, 2016, by Governor Mark Dayton. Current term expires Jan. 2019.


Juris Doctorate, William Mitchell College of Law, Cum Laude
Bachelor of Arts, College of St. Catherine, Magna Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Delta Pi

Past Employment:

Partner, Lindquist & Vennum LLP, 2011-2016
Conciliation Court Referee, Dakota County
Attorney, Moss & Barnett, 2008-2011
Attorney, Henson & Efron, 2003-2008

Judicial Committees: 

  • 1st Judicial District Representative to the Statewide Committee for Equality and Justice
  • Co-chair of the Race Bias Data and Interpreter Subcommittee of the Statewide Committee for Equality and Justice
  • Chair of the 1st Judicial District Equality and Justice Committee
  • Chair of the 1st Judicial District Community Outreach Subcommittee for Community Outreach for Equality and Justice
  • 1st Judicial District Representative to the Statewide Early Case Management Committee
  • 1st Judicial District Early Neutral and Moderated Settlement Committee
  • Chair Dakota County Family Court Work Group
Presentations, Publications, and Appearances:
  • Faculty, New Judge Orientation Program – Trial Skills Training (2017)
  • Contributing Author, Minnesota District Judges Foundation Judge Handbook (2017)
  • Speaker, Perspectives from the Bench, Dakota County Bar Association (August 2017)
  • Moderator, 1st Judicial District Community Listening Session (April 2017)
  • Panelist, “Building your Judicial Resume,” Judicial Bootcamp sponsored by Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association and the Infinity Project (October 2016)
  • Faculty, New Judge Orientation Program – “New Judge Round Table Discussion”  (2016)
  • Chair, Access to Leadership Conference, sponsored by Lindquist & Vennum, Medtronic, Best Buy, and Minnesota Women Lawyers
  • Author and Speaker, “Clarity and Brevity – How To Avoid Common Drafting Mistakes In Divorce Documents,” 2015 Minnesota Family Law Institute
  • Author and Speaker, “Family Law Basics,” 2015 Pro Bono Legal Aide and Lindquist & Vennum Seminar Series
  • Panelist, “Race and the Judiciary” – 2014 Dakota County Bar Association Seminar
  • Speaker, “Togstad in the Digital Age,” 2014 Warren E. Burger Inns of Court
  • Author and Speaker, "Fundamentals of Property Division," 2013 Minnesota Family Law Institute
  • Author, “Limitations on Grandparent Visitation?” Minnesota State Bar Association (MSBA) Family Law Forum, 2012 Winter Edition
  • Author and Speaker, “Basics of Property Division,” 2012 Minnesota Family Law Institute
  • Author, “Business Valuations in Tough Economic Times: Tips for Practitioners,” MSBA Family Law Forum, 2011 Winter Edition
  • Author, “Child Custody Crosses the Border,” Application of the Hague Convention and International Child Custody Disputes, Fall 2010
  • Speaker, “International Child Abduction and the Hague Convention,” WCCO Minnesota Law, Nov. 2010
  • Speaker, “Divorce for Business Owners,” WCCO Minnesota Law, July 2010
  • Speaker, “Changes in Child Support Laws,” WCCO Minnesota Law, August 2008
  • Speaker, “Coaching to Win,” Minnesota State High School League, 1995-2001
  • Minnesota Rising Stars, 2008-2010, 2012-2015
  • North Star Lawyer recognition for pro bono service, 2013-2015
Professional Membership and Community Involvement:
  • Warren E. Burger Inn of Court 2011-Present
  • Minnesota District Judges Foundation
  • Minnesota District Judges Association
  • Minnesota Women Lawyers
  • Dakota County Bar Association
  • Dakota County Conciliation Court Referee
  • ​Mentor, University of St. Thomas School of Law & William Mitchell College of Law
  • Volunteer Coach, Eagan Athletic Association Volleyball
  • Volunteer Coach, Mendota Heights Athletic Association Softball