Home Judicial Performance Evaluations 2000 Full List Justice Bender

Colorado Supreme Court

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Honorable Michael L. Bender

Retention year: 2000
Recommendation: Retain

The State Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Justice Michael L. Bender BE RETAINED.

Justice Bender was appointed to the Colorado Supreme Court in 1997. Prior to his appointment to the bench, he practiced law in Denver, Colorado, 1980-1996, and in Los Angeles, California, 1978-1980. Justice Bender also served as a Public Defender in Denver for five years. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the University of Colorado School of Law.

Over the years, Justice Bender has served on numerous boards and committees. He was on the Board of Governors of the Colorado Bar Association for two terms and on its Ethical Committee for 8 years. He also served as a director of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association. Currently he serves on the Law Alumni board of the University of Colorado School of Law and on the Criminal Justice Standards Committee of the American Bar Association. In 1990 Justice Bender received both the Robert C. Heeney Memorial Award for Outstanding Service from the National Association of Criminal Defense lawyers and the Fireman Award given by the Colorado State Public Defender's Office.

The State Commission is impressed with the Supreme Court responsibilities Justice Bender has assumed since his appointment. He participates on committees dealing with attorney discipline, civil justice reform, promoting the Judicial Branch's legislative agenda and judicial training. He is particularly involved with educating the public about how the judicial system operates, and chairs the Supreme Court's Public Education Committee. Comments received from attorneys indicated his opinions are thoughtful and well reasoned.

Attorneys and court personnel rated Justice Bender highly. Eighty percent (80%) voted to retain Justice Bender, 11% voted not to retain and 9% had no opinion. Eighty-eight percent (88%) of trial court judges voted to retain Justice Bender, 4% voted not to retain and 8% had no opinion.