Michael Douglas will become the first African-American chief justice of the Nevada Supreme Court effective with the new year.
On the Nevada high court, chief justice is a rotating position among the justices.
Douglas, 62, will take the administrative leadership of the court during what is expected to be a contentious 2011 legislative session. He succeeds Ron Parraguirre, who was chief justice through 2010.
He served as a district judge in Clark County from 1996-2004 when he was named to the Supreme Court. He has won election to the high court twice since.
"With the budget cuts the courts have …