May 23, 2019

Hon. Amanda K. Pearson and Hon. Susan I. Broyles to Retire

On Wednesday, June 15, 2016, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the retirement of two county court judges in the Twelfth Judicial District. Hon. Amanda K. Pearson of the Saguache County Court will retire, effective November 1, 2016, and Hon. Susan I. Broyles of the Conejos County Court will retire, effective January 10, 2017.

Judge Pearson was appointed to the Saguache County Court in March 1998. She is the Senior County Court Judge, and is also an Alamosa Municipal Court judge. Prior to her appointment, Pearson was in private practice, and also spent three years at the Twelfth Judicial District Attorney’s Office. She received her undergraduate degree from Adams State College and her law degree from the University of Colorado.

Judge Broyles was appointed to the Conejos County Court in October 2013. Prior to her appointment, she helped pro bono clients with with various matters, including collections, torts, business matters, traffic infractions, and more. Prior to that, she taught reading and writing to disadvantaged children at an inner city school for ten years. She also worked as a Special Assistant Attorney General representing the Department of Corrections, and was a non-attorney county court judge in Conejos County before receiving her J.D. from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law.

Applications are now being accepted for both vacancies. Eligible applicants must be qualified electors of the counties in which the vacancies occur, and must have graduated from high school or attained the equivalent. Application forms are available on the State Judicial website or from Justice Brian Boatright, the ex officio chair of the Twelfth Judicial District Nominating Commission. Applications must be received no later than 4 p.m. on July 20, 2016, and anyone wishing to nominate another must do so in writing no later than 4 p.m. on July 13, 2016.

For more information about the vacancies, click here.

Patrick H. Hayes Appointed to 12th Judicial District Court

On Wednesday, June 17, 2015, the governor’s office announced Governor Hickenlooper’s appointment of Patrick H. Hayes to the district court bench in the Twelfth Judicial District. Hayes will fill a vacancy created by HB 15-1034, effective July 1, 2015.

Currently, Hayes is a county court judge in Rio Grande County, where he was appointed in 2011. He is also a Division 3 Water Referee. Prior to his appointment to the Rio Grande County Court, Hayes was in private practice at Hayes Law, P.C., where he practiced criminal defense. Hayes also served as Chief Deputy District Attorney in the San Luis Valley and was the juvenile court magistrate in Rio Grande County. He received his law degree, summa cum laude, from Oklahoma City University School of Law and his undergraduate degree from Cameron University.

Nominees Announced for 12th Judicial District Court Judgeship

On Monday, June 1, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the selection of three nominees for appointment to the bench of the Twelfth Judicial District. The selected nominee will fill a vacancy created by House Bill 15-1034, effective July 1, 2015. The three nominees are Patrick H. Hayes Jr of South Fork, Jason T. Kelly of Alamosa and Amanda K. Pearson of Crestone.

Patrick H. Hayes, Jr. is currently a county court judge in Rio Grande County, presiding over a mixed docket. Jason T. Kelly is a county attorney in Alamosa. Amanda K. Pearson is a county court judge in Saguache County.

Under the Colorado Constitution, Governor Hickenlooper has 15 days from June 1 in which to select one of the nominees for appointment. Comments regarding any of the nominees may be submitted to the governor at gov_judicialappointments@state.co.us. For more information about the nominees, click here.

Application Period Open for New Judgeship on Twelfth Judicial District Court Bench

The governor signed HB 15-1034 on Friday, March 20, 2015, which increased the number of district court judges in the Twelfth Judicial District from three to four, effective July 1, 2015. The Colorado State Judicial Branch announced on Friday, March 27, 2015, that applications are now being accepted for the forthcoming vacancy. Eligible applicants must be qualified electors of the Twelfth Judicial District (Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande, and Saguache counties) and must have been admitted to practice law in Colorado for five years. Application forms are available from the State Judicial website, and from the ex officio chair of the Twelfth Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice Hood. Applications must be received no later than 4 p.m. on May 4, 2015, and anyone wishing to nominate another person must do so no later than 4 p.m. on April 27, 2015.

For more information about the vacancy, click here.

HB 15-1034: Adding a District Court Judge in the Twelfth Judicial District

On January 7, 2015, Rep. Edward Vigil and Sen. Larry Crowder introduced HB 15-1034 — Concerning an Increase in the Number of District Court Judges in the Twelfth Judicial District. This summary is published here courtesy of the Colorado Bar Association’s e-Legislative Report.

Effective July 1, 2015, the bill increases the number of district court judges in the twelfth judicial district from 3 to 4.

The bill was assigned to the House Judiciary and Appropriations Committees. The bill has passed out of the Judiciary Committee unamended and was referred to Appropriations.

Governor Hickenlooper Appoints Daniel Walzl to Alamosa County Court

On Wednesday, November 9, 2011, Governor John Hickenlooper announced his appointment of Daniel A. Walzl to serve as an Alamosa County court judge in the Twelfth Judicial District (Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande and Saguache counties). Walzl’s appointment is effective October 1, 2011.

Walzl will fill a vacancy created by the resignation of the Honorable Michael Gonzales, who was recently appointed to serve as a district court judge in the Twelfth Judicial District.

Walzl, of Alamosa, serves as the Office Head of the Colorado Public Defenders Office for the Alamosa Regional Office. Walzl previously served as a law clerk from 1999-2000 for the Honorable Thomas M. Jahnke, Superior Court, First Judicial District in Ketchikan, Alaska. The majority of Walzl’s legal career has been devoted to criminal litigation. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and his J.D. from the University of Colorado School of Law.

Finalists Selected to Fill Judgeship in Alamosa County

The Twelfth Judicial District Nominating Commission has nominated three candidates for an Alamosa County Court judgeship created by the appointment of the Honorable Michael A. Gonzales to the Twelfth Judicial District Court, effective October 1, 2011.

The nominees for the bench are Peter Comar, Jason Kelly, and Daniel Walzl. All finalists are from Alamosa and were selected by the commission on Friday, October 21.

Under the Colorado Constitution, Governor Hickenlooper has until November 8 to appoint one of the nominees as County Court Judge for Alamosa County.

Comments regarding any of the nominees can be emailed to the Governor’s Office.

Vacancy on the Alamosa County Court Following Judge Gonzales’ Appointment to the Twelfth Judicial District Bench

The Twelfth Judicial District Nominating Commission will meet at the Alamosa Combined Court on Friday, October 21, 2011, to interview and select nominees for appointment by Governor Hickenlooper to the office of County Court Judge for Alamosa County.  The vacancy will be created by the appointment of the Honorable Michael A. Gonzales to the District Court bench for the Twelfth Judicial District, effective October 1, 2011.

Eligible applicants for appointment to fill the vacancy must be qualified electors of Alamosa County and have graduated high school or attained the equivalent of a high school education as indicated by the Department of Education, based upon the record made on the General Education Development test. Applications must be received by Wednesday, October 5. The appointed county court judge will serve an initial provisional term of two years before facing a retention election. Retained judges serve four-year terms.

Further information about applying for the vacancy is available from the Colorado Judicial Branch.

Governor Hickenlooper Appoints Gonzales as District Judge for Twelfth Judicial District

On Friday, September 9, 2011, Governor John Hickenlooper announced his appointment of Michael Anthony Gonzales to serve as a district judge in the Twelfth Judicial District, which serves Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande, and Saguache counties. Gonzales will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of the Honorable O. John Kuenhold and his appointment will be effective October 1.

Gonzales is from Alamosa and currently serves as the Alamosa County Court Judge, where he has worked since 2007. He has spent the majority of his career working on criminal law prosecution and litigation.

Previously, Gonzales worked in the Twelfth Judicial District’s Office of the District Attorney, serving as Chief Deputy District Attorney for six years. Before that, he worked as an adjunct professor at Trinidad State College. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Creighton University and his law degree from the University of Colorado.

Finalists Selected to Fill Judgeship in Twelfth Judicial District

The Twelfth Judicial District Nominating Commission has nominated three candidates for a district court judgeship created by the retirement of the Honorable O. John Kuenhold, effective October 1, 2011.

Nominees for the bench are Michael Gonzales of Alamosa, Erich Schwiesow of Alamosa County, and Kimberly Wood of Fort Garland. All were selected by the commission on August 24.

Under the Colorado Constitution, the Governor Hickenlooper has until September 9 to appoint one of the nominees as district court judge for the Twelfth Judicial District, which serves Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande, and Saguache counties.

Comments regarding any of the nominees can be emailed to the Governor’s Office.

Chief Judge O. John Kuenhold to Retire from Twelfth Judicial District Bench

The Twelfth Judicial District Nominating Commission will meet at the Alamosa Combined Court on August 24, 2011, to interview and select nominees for appointment by Governor Hickenlooper to the office of district judge for the Twelfth Judicial District, which serves Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande, and Saguache counties. The vacancy will be created by the retirement of the Honorable O. John Kuenhold on October 1, 2011.

Eligible applicants for appointment to fill the vacancy must be a qualified elector of Twelfth Judicial District and must have been admitted to the practice of law in Colorado for five years. The application deadline is Wednesday, August 3, 2011. The appointed district court judge will serve an initial provisional term of two years before facing a retention election. Retained judges serve six-year terms.

Further information about the retirement of Chief Judge Kuenhold and applying for the vacancy is available from the Colorado Judicial Branch.