Herb Santos

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Herb J. Santos, Sr., Esq.

Name: Herb Santos
Hometown: Reno, Nevada, USA
Judging Record: click
Supervising Record: click


Herb Santos is an attorney and professional boxing judge from Reno, Nevada. He honorably served in the United States Navy, obtaining the rank of Petty Officer, 2nd Class. After serving his commitment, he qualified for the G.I. Bill. He attended Suffolk University in Boston, Massachusetts and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree. While at Suffolk University, he was a varsity letterman on the Suffolk University Basketball Team.

Santos then attended Suffolk University, School of Law, earning a Juris Doctorate and LLB. After passing the Massachusetts State Bar, he chose to continue to serve his country and enlisted in the United States Air Force where he served as a Judge Advocate General (JAG) at Stead Air Force Base in Reno, Nevada and obtained the rank of Captain.

He married his sweetheart, Jeannette Olivera, in 1962 and they have three children: Herb Jr., Joel and Cory. After honorably completing his three year term in the USAF, Santos passed the Nevada State Bar Exam and was admitted to the Nevada Bar in 1964. He then served as a Deputy Reno City Attorney. After two years, he then served as a Deputy District Attorney for the Washoe County District Attorney's Office. He attended Prosecutors School at the prestigious Northwestern University, School of Law, in Chicago, Illinois. As a deputy D.A., he prosecuted both felony, gross misdemeanor and misdemeanor cases, some of which created groundbreaking law.

After two years as a deputy district attorney, Santos went into private practice. Practicing primarily in Criminal Defense, Civil, Immigration, Family Law, Personal Injury, Probate and Wills. Santos continues to represent clients at the district court level up to the Nevada Supreme Court. He also represents clients in Federal Court.

Santos began his career as an amateur boxing judge in the early 1970s. He eventually began working professional boxing matches as a timekeeper and by keeping count of the knockdowns for the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC).

In 1978 He was thrilled when he was granted a professional boxing judges license by the NSAC.

He has judged over 30 title fights in his career, including thirteen world title bouts. The most notable fight which he has judged to date was the Marvelous Marvin Hagler v. Thomas Hearns fight in 1985.

From 1985-1988, he served on the Nevada State Athletic Commission. He was appointed by then Governor Richard Bryan. He was elected Chairman of the Commission in 1988. While a Commissioner, he strongly advocated for AIDS and hepatitis awareness and was instrumental in the implementation of testing of boxers for AIDS and hepatitis and the creation of safety measures to further protect boxers. He also oversaw and pushed through the creation of a new rule book. He returned to judging in 1989.

Santos has three sons, all of whom are practicing attorneys in Nevada. His daughter-in-law, Theresa (married to his youngest son Cory), is also an attorney in Nevada. His oldest son, Herb, Jr., worked as an inspector for the NSAC in the late 1980s. His middle son, Joel, is an amateur official for USA Boxing and officiates at amateur shows in northern Nevada. His youngest son, Cory, is an amateur boxing judge for USA Boxing who officiates shows in northern and southern Nevada, and is a former two-time Nevada State Boxing Champion (Golden Gloves and USA Boxing State), and a former NCBA College Boxer for the University of Nevada, Reno (1993-1996).

Career Highlights

  • Professional Boxing Judge: 1978-present.
  • Commissioner, Nevada State Athletic Commission: 1985-1988 (Chairman 1988).
  • Judged 13 World Championship bouts as of 4/10/10.
  • Judged over 30 plus overall title fights.
  • Judged three Heavyweight Championship fights:
    • Evander Holyfield v. Francois Botha, 2010.
    • Pinklon Thomas v. Mike Weaver, 1985.
    • Larry Holmes v. Tim Witherspoon, 1983.
  • Most notable fight: Marvelous Marvin Hagler v. Thomas "Hitman" Hearns, Undisputed World Middleweight Championship, April 15, 1985, Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada.
  • Other significant and notable fights judged:
    • Evander Holyfield v. Fancois Botha, WBF Heavyweight Championship, April 10, 2010, Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, Nevada;
    • Chris John v. Rocky Juarez, WBA Super World Featherweight Championship, September 19, 2009, MGM, Las Vegas, Nevada;
    • Pinklon Thomas v. Mike Weaver, WBC Heavyweight Championship, June 15, 1985, Riviera Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
    • Larry Holmes v. Tim Witherspoon, WBC Heavyweight Championship, May 18, 1983, Dunes Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
    • Sugar Ray Leonard v. Bruce Finch, Undisputed World Welterweight Championship, February 15, 1982, Centennial Coliseum, Reno, Nevada.