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Noble, Laurie 2002 Evaluation


Ninth Judicial District - Rio Blanco County Court Judge

Honorable Laurie A. Noble

Retention Year: 2002
Recommendation: Retain

The Ninth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Judge Laurie A. Noble BE RETAINED.

Judge Nobel was appointed to the Rio Blanco Associate County Court in July 1992. Prior to her appointment to the bench, she was an associate attorney in general private practice in Grand Junction, Colorado, specializing in insurance defense. Judge Noble received her law degree from the West Virginia University College of Law in 1989. Over the past two years, 20% of her cases were civil and 80% were criminal. Judge Noble also serves as Municipal Court Judge for the town of Meeker and is employed as a part-time attorney for the town of Rangley.

Her community service includes a Junior Partnership with an at-risk youth, participation in mock trails held by the high school and civic presentations to local first graders.

The Commission reviewed written evaluations received from five of the attorneys who appeared in her court in the last two years, and from 60 non-attorneys, including five law enforcement personnel, seven plaintiffs and 39 defendants. They also reviewed the judge’s written self-evaluation and conducted a personal interview with her.

Judge Noble promises to be vigilant about the potential conflict of interest between her judicial and town attorney positions and of the problems of serving in a small town. She willingly recuses herself if requested by a party or if she perceives a potential conflict. She tries to avoid all ex parte discussions about any case or party before her court. Judge Noble wants litigants and criminal defendants, in particular, to understand that the system exists to help them as well as to deter future offenses. She seeks to improve her judicial skills, especially in knowledge of law and procedure.

Judge Noble received above average to high composite ratings from both attorneys and non-attorneys in all categories, particularly in the areas of courtesy; lack of race, age or gender bias; communicating clearly, thoroughly and in a well-reasoned manner; in being accessible and well-prepared; and managing her cases, docket and courtroom efficiently. Of the attorney evaluations received, 80% voted to retain Judge Noble and 20% (one attorney) voted not to retain. The Commission was impressed with Judge Noble and voted unanimously to recommend retention.