Home Judicial Performance Evaluations 2000 Full List Judge Harrell

Second Judicial District - Denver County Judge

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Honorable Alfred C. Harrell

Retention year: 2000
Recommendation: Retain

The Second Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Judge Alfred C. Harrell BE RETAINED.

Judge Harrell was appointed to the Denver County Court bench in November 1985. Prior to his appointment to the bench, Judge Harrell was in private practice in Denver, specializing in general civil and criminal litigation, including federal and state trials and appellate matters. Judge Harrell received his undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado and graduated from the University of Denver College of Law in 1971. Judge Harrell presently hears criminal and misdemeanor cases. During the past fifteen years, he has also served in most of the divisions of the County Court, including traffic court; General Sessions trials for municipal ordinance violations; state and municipal criminal court; and civil court. Judge Harrell conducts many jury trials.

The Commission reviewed written evaluations of Judge Harrell from attorneys and non-attorneys, including written verbatim comments attached to the evaluation questionnaires. The Commission also considered a written self-evaluation completed by Judge Harrell and conducted a personal interview with Judge Harrell.

Judge Harrell has received numerous awards for his law-related and community service activities, including: the Professionalism Award from the Colorado Bar Association in 1995; the Denver Bar Association's Judicial Excellence Award in 1993; the University of Colorado Alumni Association's highest award, the George Norlin Award, for lifetime achievement in his chosen profession in 1997; the Denver Bar Association's highest award, the Award of Merit, in 1998; and the Colorado Asian Bar Foundation Minoru Yasui award for community service in 1998; and in April of this year, he received the Judicial Mentoring Award from the Colorado Women's Bar Association. Judge Harrell spends a great deal of time mentoring attorneys, particularly women and minority attorneys. He also teaches in various forums, including the National Institute of Trial Advocacy for the Rocky Mountain Region and the Native American Trial Advocacy programs. Judge Harrell enjoys studying Spanish; playing social card games such as bridge; and writing poetry. He occasionally conducts poetry workshops in the public schools. He has a great deal of enthusiasm for his work as a judge. Judge Harrell's judicial philosophy includes wanting all people who walk out of his courtroom to feel that they were treated fairly and that, regardless of the outcome of the case, their dignity remained intact. He works hard at being a good judge and being fair and even-handed. He views each case as different and approaches each one with a fresh attitude.

Judge Harrell received high ratings from both attorneys and non-attorneys in virtually every category, particularly in the areas of being courteous; treating all parties equally; communicating clearly, thoroughly and in a well-reasoned manner; maintaining proper judicial temperament; correctly applying the law; and performing with diligence, efficiency and minimal delay. Of the attorneys responding to the questionnaire, 96% recommended that Judge Harrell be retained in office, 4% recommended that he not be retained, and 0% had no opinion. Of the non-attorneys responding to the questionnaire, 71% recommended retention, 18% recommended non-retention, and 11% had no opinion.