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Melissa Hart, Patti Swift, Marcy Glenn named finalists for Colorado Supreme Court vacancy

Author: Ernest Luning - November 29, 2017 - Updated: November 29, 2017

Outside-2.jpg
embryos supreme court caseThe Ralph Carr Building is home to the Colorado Supreme Court. (Photo courtesy of the Colorado Judicial Branch)

The state Supreme Court Nominating Commission has named three finalists for a vacancy on the Colorado Supreme Court, the Colorado Judicial Department announced Wednesday, including a district court judge from Alamosa, a leading appellate lawyer with a large firm in Denver and a University of Colorado law professor.

The nominees are 12th Judicial District Chief Judge Patti P. Swift, Holland & Hart partner Marcy G. Glenn and CU law professor Melissa Hart, director of the Byron R. White Center for Constitutional Law.

Gov. John Hickenlooper has until Dec. 14 to appoint one of the women to fill the vacancy created when former Justice Allison Eid stepped down to join the federal 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Eid replaced Neil Gorsuch, who was appointed by President Donald Trump to the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this year.

Hart, who made an unsuccessful run for CU regent in 2010, was among the finalists for state Supreme Court appointments in 2015 when Hickenlooper picked Colorado Court of Appeals Judge Richard Gabriel.

It will be Hickenlooper’s fourth appointment to the seven-member Colorado Supreme Court. Hickenlooper’s predecessors, Govs. Roy Romer, Bill Owens and Bill Ritter, each appointed one of the other three justices on the high court. Colorado Supreme Court justices serve 10-year terms after an initial two-year term and face statewide retention elections at the end of their terms.

The 15-member nominating commission selected Swift, Glenn and Hart following interviews Monday and Tuesday at the Ralph L. Carr Colorado Judicial Center in Denver. The governor is accepting emailed comments about the nominees at gov_judicialappointments@state.co.us .

This post will be updated.

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning is a political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has covered politics and government for newspapers and online news sites in Colorado for more than 25 years, including at the Highlands Ranch Herald, the Jefferson Sentinels chain of community newspapers and the Aurora Sentinel, where he was the city hall and cops reporter. After editing the Aurora Daily Sun, he was a political reporter and blogger for The Colorado Independent site. Since 2009, he has been the senior political reporter and occasional editor for The Colorado Statesman.