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Lillian Ada Tenorio Sworn in at Public Investiture


CNMI Superior Court Associate Judge Lillian Ada Tenorio was sworn in at a public investiture ceremony held at the Guma' Hustisia on May 8, 2024. Governor Arnold I. Palacios administered the Oath of Office, with her husband Ed holding the bible and sons Chris and Andre presenting her gavel and judicial robe.


In her address, Judge Tenorio expressed gratitude to Chief Justice Alexandro C. Castro, Presiding Judge Roberto C. Naraja, court staff, Governor Palacios, and the Senate for their support and confidence. She acknowledged the assistance and respect she received from the judicial branch and credited her journey to the numerous mentors, colleagues, and professors who aided her along the way.


Judge Tenorio is the fourth woman to become an associate judge of the Superior Court after taking the oath of office in a private swearing-in on February 20, 2024. Prior to this, she served as Deputy Attorney General for the CNMI from January 31, 2015, to February 19, 2024, under the first elected attorney general, Edward Manibusan. Before joining the Office of the Attorney General, she practiced law as a solo practitioner from July 2004 to January 30, 2015. Her legal career also includes roles as legal counsel for the House of Representatives and law clerk to CNMI Supreme Court Justice John A. Manglona.


Judge Tenorio holds a B.A. from the University of California, Davis (1984), and a J.D. from the University of New Mexico School of Law (1999), where she received accolades such as the Julia Raymond McCulloch Memorial Award for Constitutional Law and the CALI Excellence for the Future Award for the Study of Constitutional Law. She is licensed to practice in the CNMI before the CNMI Superior Court and Supreme Court and the Federal District Court for the Northern Mariana Islands. While she is currently an inactive member of the State of New Mexico Bar, she has actively contributed to various legal organizations, serving as president of the CNMI Bar Association, a member of the disciplinary committee, and on the board of directors of the Micronesian Legal Services Corporation and the NMI Humanities Council. Additionally, she has shared her expertise as an adjunct instructor at the Northern Marianas College.



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