Attorney Matt Wilson was confirmed today by the General Assembly as the newest member of the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals – Western Section. Wilson was appointed by Governor Bill Lee in January after a lengthy application process that included a public hearing. He fills the vacancy left after the passing of Judge John Everett Williams in September 2022. Wilson was sworn-in as a judge immediately after his confirmation.
“Matt has an extensive background in criminal law and brings a wealth of first-hand experience to the Court of Criminal Appeals,” said Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger A. Page. “I am delighted he made the decision to join the bench, and I am sure he will serve with integrity, humility and compassion.”
Judge Wilson has dedicated his legal career to criminal law and public service. He has most recently served as an Assistant United States Attorney, United States Department of Justice, assigned to the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Tennessee, a position he has held since 2011. He handles cases from the investigation phase through adjudication and appeals.
Previously, he worked as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Western District of Arkansas. He began his career as a state prosecutor in Florida.
“Criminal justice and the law are my passions,” Judge Wilson said. “I have prosecuted hundreds of cases, and I am looking forward to reviewing cases from a different perspective. The work we do is incredibly important to our communities and can forever change a person’s life. I take that responsibility very seriously.”
Judge Wilson was born and raised in Nashville, where he lived until he attended college. He earned his B.A. from Auburn University and his law degree from Florida State University College of Law. He is a member of Fellowship Bible Church in Jackson, where he is the Men’s Bible Study Leader and teaches Sunday school. He co-founded AIM Ministries, which provides housing and employment opportunities to young men, especially those who have recently aged out of the foster care system.
Judge Wilson is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association, Howell Edmunds Jackson Inns of Court, Federal Bar Association and Federalist Society. He has earned multiple awards from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Agency, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Health and Human Services and United States Attorney’s Office over his career.
Judge Wilson will take the bench immediately. He will be on the August 2024 general election ballot as an appellate “retain/do not retain” candidate. If retained, his term will end August 31, 2030.