Serves as one of ten judges on the intermediate court between the district courts and theSupreme Court. Judges sit in panels of three. Court reviews appeals in all cases, except criminal cases involving sentences of death or life imprisonment, appeals from the Public Regulation Commission, and cases involving habeas corpus. Must be 35 years old, have practiced law for 10 years, and have resided in New Mexico for the last three years. Elected statewide for eight-year term. Salary: Chief Judge, $134,727; Judge $132,827
Voters at a retention election may vote either “yes” or “no” for each individual judge for retention. To retain the office, a judge standing for retention must receive 57% “yes” votes of all the votes cast on the question of retention.
1. How have your training, professional experience and interests prepared you to serve on this court? (65 words)
My twenty-four years of legal experience include being a Judge on the Court of Appeals since 2011, a federal prosecutor, and a lawyer representing New Mexicans. Since my family moved to Taos in 1986, my love of our state’s outdoors, culture, people, diversity, and cuisine have contributed to my understanding of public service and the need for a fair, efficient, and independent judiciary.
2. What policies are critical to keep the judiciary independent from political influence? (65 words)
Most voters agree that politics and judicial service are functionally incompatible. Yet except in retention elections such as mine this year, our state still opts to identify judicial candidates by political party affiliation. That should change, as it has in most other states. During my seven years as an appellate judge, I have advocated loudly for non-partisan judicial elections, as yet to no avail.
3. What improvements in the Court of Appeals would you seek to make if retained? (65 words)
Six of our ten appellate judges have retired in the past four years. Afterward, my senior colleagues and I noticed an accompanying opportunity to modernize court processes. I hope to continue my contribution to this effort, which combines staffing revisions, technology upgrades, improved training, and changes to our use of limited financial resources to attain speedier, correct, and more publicly accessible rulings.
Four-year term. Must be at least eighteen years old and a member of the New Mexico Bar engaged in actual practice in the state for three years. The Bernalillo County Metropolitan Court is part of the statewide Magistrate Court System and is state funded. This court has jurisdiction over civil actions under $10,000, felony first appearances, misdemeanors, misdemeanor DWI/DUI, misdemeanor domestic violence and traffic violations. To be retained, a judge must receive at least 57% “yes” votes of all the votes cast in the retention election. Yearly salary: $119,870.
Division 1 VICTOR E VALDEZ
Division 2 CHRISTINE EVE RODRIGUEZ
Division 3 RENEE TORRES
Division 4 COURTNEY BRYN WEAKS
Division 5 FRANK A SEDILLO
Division 6 MARIA I DOMINGUEZ
Division 7 ROSEMARY COSGROVE-AGUILAR
Division 8 JILL M MARTINEZ
Division 9 YVETTE K GONZALES
Division 10 EDWARD L BENAVIDEZ
Division 11 SANDRA ENGEL
Division 12 DANIEL E RAMCZYK
Division 13 ICHELLE CASTILLO DOWLER
Division 14 VIDIALIA G CHAVEZ
Division 15 KENNY C MONTOYA
Division 17 HENRY A ALANIZ
Division 18 ROSIE LAZCANO ALLRED
Division 19 LINDA S ROGERS