Eleventh Judicial District - Custer County Judge
Honorable Amanda Jean Hunter
Retention Year: 2018
Recommendation: Meets Performance Standard
The Eleventh Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance unanimously (8-0) finds that Judge Amanda Jean Hunter MEETS PERFORMANCE STANDARDS.
Judge Hunter received a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration in 2002 from The University of Iowa where she majored in marketing, finance and received an emphasis in accounting. In 2011, she graduated with a Degree of Juris Doctor from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. Upon graduating, she was hired full time by the Colorado State Public Defender and practiced in the 11th Judicial District in both District and County Court until she was appointed to the Custer County Court in January 2016.
The Commission conducted a personal interview with Judge Hunter, reviewed opinions she authored, observed her in court, reviewed comments received from interested parties during the evaluation, and reviewed surveys sent to attorneys and non-attorneys who had experience with Judge Hunter in her capacity as County Court Judge. A total of six attorneys and twenty-three non-attorneys responded to the judicial performance surveys expressing their opinion of Judge Hunter’s performance. Among the survey questions was "Do you think Judge Hunter meets judicial performance standards?" Of the attorneys responding to the survey, 67% answered ‘yes, meets performance standards,’ and 33% answered ‘no, does not meet performance standards.’ Of non-attorneys responding to the survey, 75% answered ‘yes, meets performance standards,’ 17% answered ‘no, does not meet performance standards,’ and 8% had no opinion regarding whether Judge Hunter meets or does not meet performance standards. These percentages may not total 100% due to rounding.
Judge Hunter presides over civil, criminal, misdemeanor, traffic, and small claim cases in her courtroom. Judge Hunter's overall performance as rated by both attorneys and non-attorneys responding to the surveys is consistent with the average rating of all county judges standing for retention. Judge Hunter received slightly higher marks from non-attorneys than from attorneys. Both courtroom observations from the commission and comments from survey respondents pointed to Judge Hunter’s ability and desire to calmly and clearly communicate all facets of the proceedings taking place. Additionally, Judge Hunter received above-average marks for her diligence and willingness to thoroughly research and tackle cases regardless of their level of complexity. Judge Hunter has been on the bench for just over two years, and survey results indicate an initial weakness related to the timeliness of rulings and verbosity in the courtroom. Judge Hunter has indicated that she has identified these weaknesses and is taking affirmative steps to improve these issues. Specifically, she continues to gain experience and confidence which will allow her to continue to improve in these areas. Based on these findings, the Commission unanimously agreed that Judge Hunter meets judicial performance standards. Two members abstained from voting.