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Rivera, Gloria 2002 Evaluation


Second Judicial District - District Court Judge

Honorable Gloria A. Rivera 

Retention Year: 2002
Recommendation: Retain

The Second Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Judge Gloria A. Rivera BE RETAINED.

Judge Rivera was appointed to the Denver District Court bench in March 1999. Prior to being appointed, Judge Rivera was a Deputy District Attorney in Denver, where she served in the Domestic Violence/Child Abuse Unit. Upon her appointment she was assigned to handle civil cases. In January 2002, she took over a criminal docket.

Judge Rivera hails from Southern California. Prior to embarking on her legal career, she worked as a flight attendant for 16 years. Judge Rivera received her undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado at Denver, and her law degree from the University of Denver.

Judge Rivera believes that professional and community services are important aspects of her position within the legal system. She has mentored inner city youths and presided over numerous "career day" activities for secondary school classes. She has also participated in workshops for practicing attorneys and judged mock trial competitions among law students.

The Commission reviewed written evaluations of Judge Rivera from attorneys and non-attorneys, including written comments. The Commission also considered a written self-evaluation completed by Judge Rivera and conducted a personal interview with her.

Most of the ratings from attorneys were below those of her colleagues. Sixty-eight percent of attorney respondents recommended retention, 26% recommended non-retention and 6% had no opinion. However, 97% of non-attorneys recommended that she be retained. Judge Rivera attributes this dichotomy to not having a background in civil litigation. She acknowledged that her area of expertise when appointed was in criminal law, and that the
learning curve for civil law was significant. Judge Rivera has made efforts to remedy this deficiency by putting in extra time to "learn the ropes," and by consulting with her colleagues.