Fourth Judicial District - District Judge
2012 Retention Survey Report
2011 Interim Survey Report
2009 Interim Survey Report
Honorable Theresa M. CisnerosRetention year: 2012
The Fourth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance unanimously recommends, by a vote of 9-0, that Judge Theresa M. Cisneros BE RETAINED. One commission member was absent.
Judge Cisneros graduated from the University of Colorado at Denver in 1979. She received her law degree from the University of Denver in 1983. Her court docket is made up primarily of domestic relations and criminal cases. She has previously presided over civil, mental health, and juvenile dependency and neglect dockets. Prior to ascending to the bench she had a private practice, mainly in criminal defense and juvenile cases. She served as a Deputy Public Defender from 1986 until 1991. Judge Cisneros is active in the community, including speaking on behalf of the Judicial District’s “Our Courts” program, educating both the English and Spanish speaking communities in the Fourth Judicial District about the workings of the state and federal courts. She is a respected speaker with the “Judicially Speaking” program, teaching middle school and high school students about the judicial system, as well as volunteering her time to work with the Colorado Springs Police Department volunteer programs, including the volunteer chaplains and the Espanol Service Program, providing education and insight to these groups concerning the court system and court proceedings. She serves as a presiding judge of the Teen Court program in Colorado Springs, and donates her efforts to the Colorado Bar Association Regional Mock Trial Competition. Judge Cisneros is a member of the Colorado Supreme Court’s Judicial Advisory Council and works with judges assisting the State Court Administrator’s Office with development of new computer programs to streamline and modernize the Colorado state court computer systems. She is a member of the Colorado Criminal and Juvenile Justice Commission, participating in efforts to enhance and improve criminal and juvenile justice statewide. Additionally, she is a member of the Fourth Judicial District’s Mentorship Committee which helps district employees mentor and learn from one another.
Judge Cisneros was rated well above the average for district judges statewide standing for retention, by both attorneys and non-attorneys, in ruling on cases after hearings and trials, and above average in case management in general. In the surveys she was repeatedly commended for her courtroom management style, as well as her knowledge of the law. She was rated below the statewide average in setting reasonable schedules for cases, with comments that she moved cases too rapidly with regard to scheduling and continuances. Comments from both attorneys and non-attorneys commended her civility and dignity with which she manages her courtroom.
Of all attorneys surveyed about retention, 78% recommended to retain, 16% not to retain, and 5% were undecided or didn’t have enough information to make a recommendation. Of those expressing an opinion to retain or not to retain, 83% recommended to retain, and 17% not to retain. Of all non-attorneys surveyed, 84% recommended to retain, 9% not to retain, and 7% were undecided or didn’t have enough information to make a recommendation. Of those expressing an opinion to retain or not to retain, 91% recommended to retain and 9% not to retain. (These percentages may not total 100% due to rounding.)