SIOUX CITY | Tod Deck was in the middle of trial, questioning a witness when his phone rang late Wednesday.
He had informed the judge he was expecting a call from the governor, and when his phone rang, he was granted a short recess to step out in the hall.
When Deck answered the phone, Gov. Kim Reynolds was on the other end, delivering good news: she'd chosen him to be a district court judge.
Deck had no time to celebrate.
"Two minutes later I was back in trial questioning the witness," Deck said Thursday morning.
The trial lasted for another hour, delaying the chance for Deck to appreciate the moment. His case was in Council Bluffs, so he had plenty of time to notify his wife, family and some friends before arriving home in Sioux City.
"I had the drive back by myself to let it sink in," he said.
It was likely the last trial Deck will try as an attorney. He'll be seated on the bench sometime next month, filling an opening created by the retirement of District Judge Edward Jacobson in October.
Deck and Sioux City lawyer Priscilla Forsyth had been nominated as the finalists. Deck said Forsyth is an excellent attorney, so he was "happy and surprised" to be chosen.
A Sioux City native, Deck is a partner in the Deck Law firm and is also a Woodbury County magistrate. He practices criminal defense law, divorce and family law, probate and other areas as well. He said he believed his experience in a number of areas of the law helped his candidacy.
Until he's sworn in, Deck will have 30 days to wrap up his practice, notifying clients that he'll no longer be representing them. He'll also wait to find out the verdict of his last trial, which was a bench trial that will be decided by the judge.
Deck will serve in Judicial District 3B, which includes Woodbury, Crawford, Ida, Monona, Plymouth and Sioux counties.