Seventeenth Judicial District - District Judge
Honorable Emily Elizabeth Anderson
Retention Year: 2016
Recommendation: Meets Performance Standard
The Seventeenth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance unanimously recommends by a vote of 9-0 that Judge Emily Elizabeth Anderson BE RETAINED.
Governor Hickenlooper appointed Judge Anderson to the Seventeenth Judicial District Court in 2013. Judge Anderson had previously served as a District Court Magistrate in the Seventeenth Judicial District since 2005. As a Magistrate, she worked in the civil, domestic relations, criminal, and juvenile divisions. In 2013, she was the recipient of the Colorado Judicial Institute's Judicial Excellence Award for having an attitude that makes the court accessible to all, displaying a high level of open communication, and being respected by her peers, staff and lawyers. Judge Anderson currently serves on three committees with innovative programs to best serve the citizens of Adams and Broomfield counties. She volunteers on the 17th Judicial District Juvenile Services Planning Committee, the Access to Justice Committee for the 17th Judicial District, and the Adams/Broomfield County Bench & Bar Committee. Additionally, she volunteers for Colorado Lawyers Helping Lawyers, a court-approved, peer assistance program that offers support, education and referrals for attorneys, judges and law students who are experiencing problems with alcohol, substance abuse, and mental health concerns.
The evaluation methods used by the Judicial Performance Commission included a personal interview with Judge Anderson, review of opinions she authored, her self-evaluation, courtroom observations, and a review of survey responses from attorneys and non-attorneys associated with cases assigned to Judge Anderson. Among the survey questions was "how strongly do you recommend Judge Anderson be retained in office, or not be retained in office?" Of the attorneys completing the survey, 94% recommended retaining and 6% not to retain. Of non-attorneys completing the survey, 74% recommended to retain, 22% not to retain, and 4% made no recommendation regarding retention.
Judge Anderson has presided exclusively over family law matters this term. She started monthly meetings with staff and judicial officers to improve customer service to the families she serves. Judge Anderson often teaches about family law at community and bar association gatherings. Based on the survey results of attorneys and appellate judges, Judge Anderson received an overall combined rating that exceeds the combined rating of all district judges standing for retention. The sections rated included Retention, Case Management, Application and Knowledge of Law, Communications, Demeanor, Diligence, and Bias. Non-attorneys responding to the survey rated Judge Anderson's overall performance marginally below the average rating of other district court judges standing for retention as to Demeanor, Fairness, Communications, Diligence, and Application of Law. Survey respondents described Judge Anderson as professional, having excellent knowledge of the law and its application, unbiased, pragmatic, compassionate, respectful of and fair to litigants, patient, decisive, and as having an excellent judicial temperament and courtroom management skills. Through courtroom observation and an interview with Judge Anderson, the Commission found these attributes to be an accurate assessment of her judicial abilities. Based on its review, the Judicial Performance Commission unanimously recommends that Judge Emily E. Anderson BE RETAINED.