11 residents apply for district judge job

Eleven residents have applied for a new judgeship position that is being created in the 6th Judicial District, which covers Archuleta, San Juan and La Plata counties.

The candidates are Steven Boos, Suzanne Carlson, James Casey, Joel Fry, William Herringer, Dolores Kanski, Benjamin Lammons, Susan “Leigh” Meigs, Martha Minot, Todd Norvell and E. Michelle Sylvain. Boos is an Ignacio resident; the rest are from Durango.

Minot currently serves as a La Plata County judge. Casey serves as a magistrate in Archuleta County, a municipal court judge in Durango and Bayfield, and as a special prosecutor for the Southern Ute Indian Tribe.

Lammons is a tribal prosecutor. Meigs is a former Durango city councilor and serves as a magistrate in the 22nd Judicial District, which includes Cortez.

Norvell is a former prosecutor with the 6th Judicial District Attorney’s Office and currently works as an assistant U.S. attorney in Durango.

Boos works at the private firm Maynes, Bradford, Shipps & Sheftel; Sylvain is a law clerk for judges in the 6th Judicial District.

Carlson is a former judge with the Southern Ute Indian Tribe and a former defense lawyer for the state probation department.

Fry and Herringer both practice criminal defense. Kanski does family law with a private practice in Durango.

The candidates will be interviewed in private by the 6th Judicial District Nominating Commission on June 12 at the La Plata County Courthouse. State Supreme Justice Allison H. Eid will attend the interviews.

Members of the nominating commission are Thomas Shipps, Kohler McInnis, William Zimsky, Robert Oswald, Deborah Schulte, Gary Lindsay and Stephen Fearn.

The commission will recommend three candidates to Gov. John Hickenlooper, who is expected to interview all three candidates and name his selection within 15 days.

Hickenlooper gave final approval March 9 to the creation of a fourth judgeship position in the 6th Judicial District.

Funding for the position was already available because of a previous year’s bill that added judges in Jefferson County. The county west of Denver never used its full allocation of judges, so Rep. J. Paul Brown, R-Ignacio, and Sen. Ellen Roberts, R-Durango, sponsored a bill to create a position in the 6th Judicial District. It had the backing of Supreme Court Chief Justice Michael Bender.

The application period has passed and public comment on the qualifications of the applicants is invited. Comments can be directed to any member of the 6th Judicial District Nominating Commission, with a copy to the ex-officio chair, Justice Eid, 101 W. Colfax Ave., Suite 800, Denver, CO 80202, or they can be emailed to judicial.vacancies@judicial.state.co.us no later than Friday.

shane@durangoherald.com