Wade Kizer graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a degree in Business Management and Administration in 1976. He received his Juris Doctor degree in 1979 from the University of Richmond School of Law. He was a member of Law Review and of the McNeill Law Society.
After law school, he worked as an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney for Henrico County from 1979 through 1984. During this time he tried a variety of cases including murder and manslaughter as well as crimes involving offenses committed by one family member against another. From 1984 through 1985 he was an associate at May, Miller and Nooney where he handled a variety of civil cases, many of which were automobile negligence cases. He also defended many criminal cases including capital murder, robbery, abduction, assault and DUI.
From 1985 – 1986 he was an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney for Hanover County. In 1986 he returned to the Henrico County Commonwealth Attorney’s Office. He tried dozens of homicide cases as well as many other major cases. From 1990 – 1992 he was Special Counsel to the Richmond Metropolitan Multijurisdiction Grand Jury. He supervised a grand jury which investigated major drug organizations and he tried all indictments returned by that grand jury. Most of these cases were complex conspiracies dealing with organizations of people involved in the distribution of narcotics or marijuana. Most overlapped geographical boundaries.
In 2000 Wade Kizer was elected Commonwealth’s Attorney for Henrico County. He served in this position until 2011. In this position he headed an office of 60 persons including 29 lawyers. He tried many major cases including capital murder, murder, child pornography, and white collar crime cases. He was appointed to act as special prosecutor by Circuit Court judges in more than 15 different counties and cities. He served on the Board of Governors of the Virginia State Bar Criminal Law Section. He was a member of the Henrico County Community Criminal Justice Board and the James River Juvenile Detention Center Commission. In 2011 he received an award from the Innocence Project for his work on the Thomas Haynesworth case. He has been an instructor in the Henrico Division of Police Training Academy for many years. He served for a time on the faculty of the Virginia Institute of Forensic Science and Medicine where he participated in training seminars on the use of DNA evidence. He has tried many cases involving the use of DNA, fingerprints, handwriting, and other scientific evidence. He has tried more than 100 jury trials during his career.