Ruckriegle, W. Terry 2004 Evaluation


Fifth Judicial District - District Court Judge

Honorable W. Terry Ruckriegle 

Retention Year: 2004
Recommendation: Retain

The Fifth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Judge W. Terry Ruckriegle BE RETAINED.

Judge Ruckriegle graduated from Indiana University with a business degree in 1969 and a law degree in 1973. He served as a prosecutor in the Fifth Judicial District Attorney’s office in Georgetown for 9 years. Judge Ruckriegle has served on the district court bench since 1984 and has acted as chief judge of the Fifth Judicial District since 1994. He sits primarily in Breckenridge and Georgetown. Judge Ruckriegle serves on numerous committees for the Colorado Judicial Branch, American and Colorado Bar Association and regularly presents at classes for continuing judicial legal and educational programs.

Judge Ruckriegle received good ratings from attorneys responding to the judicial performance survey, although slightly below his peer group, in all categories except demeanor where he was rated below the overall average. Similarly, non-attorneys responding to the survey awarded good scores that were slightly below his peer group in all categories but also below the overall average for demeanor. The Judge and Commission discussed these ratings and associated concerns during an initial interview. In a follow-up interview Judge Ruckriegle acknowledged these concerns and presented specific actions he planned to take to improve his ratings. The Commission is satisfied that these are positive steps and that Judge Ruckriegle is committed to make improvements in his overall demeanor rating as well as all other categories.

The opinion of the groups responding in statistically meaningful numbers to the surveys circulated by the State Commission on Judicial Performance were as follows: Attorneys-Retain 77%, Do not retain 22%. Non-Attorneys-Retain 74%, Do not retain 26%. The Fifth Judicial District Commission voted 9-0 with one member abstaining to recommend that
Judge Ruckriegle be RETAINED. This recommendation is in part based on Rule 13 (b) of the Rules Governing the Commissions on Judicial Performance, which state that the Commission shall “strongly” consider retention for any judge receiving more than an average of 2.0 in response to the questions in both the attorney and non-attorney surveys. Judge Ruckriegle’s ratings from these groups were well in excess of that average. The Commission recommendation is also based on Judge Ruckriegle’s sincere commitment to make further improvements.

The Fifth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Judge Ruckriegle be retained.