Final Recommendation

Mary  Marlowe Sommer
The Honorable

Mary Marlowe Sommer

District Court Judge
1st Judicial District --
Los Alamos, Rio Arriba, and Santa Fe Counties
Criminal/ Juvenile Court

Year: 2020

Recommendation: Retain

Election Results:

Evaluation: Overall, Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer’s scores were mixed. The court staff and resource staff (e.g., law enforcement, probation and parole officers, interpreters, etc.) rated her positively. Attorneys gave her low ratings for not always treating all participants equally and for not always displaying fairness and impartiality toward each side of the case. They also gave her low ratings when it comes to being courteous to all participants and demonstrating appropriate demeanor on the bench. During Judge Marlowe Sommer’s interview, she displayed a sincere awareness of her deficiencies and a willingness to improve. Following her initial interview, Judge Marlowe Sommer took concrete steps to improve her demeanor in court and to address perceptions related to her appearance of fairness. In light of her significant efforts to address these issues, the Commission recommends that Judge Marlowe Sommer be retained.

Experience & Education: Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer was appointed to the District Court in April 2010 and elected November 2010. Prior to the appointment, she worked as a Child Support Hearing Officer, criminal and juvenile defense attorney, and an Assistant Attorney General for the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office. Judge Marlowe Sommer received her undergraduate degree from James Madison University and her law degree from George Mason School of Law in 1983.

PERCENTAGE THAT AGREE OR DISAGREE THAT THE JUDGE EXHIBITS POSITIVE QUALITIES IN EACH CATEGORY *

Attorneys (n=62, 37% Response Rate)
Category Agree Partly Agree/ Partly Disagree Disagree
Exhibits Integrity 56% 15% 29%
Fair and Impartial 43% 22% 35%
Knowledgeable of Law 44% 29% 27%
Communication is Clear 51% 25% 24%
Appropriate Demeanor 30% 24% 46%
Properly Controls Proceedings 70% 13% 16%
Respects Court Employees N/A N/A N/A
Court Staff (n=30, 40% Response Rate)
Category Agree Partly Agree/ Partly Disagree Disagree
Exhibits Integrity 74% 22% 4%
Fair and Impartial N/A N/A N/A
Knowledgeable of Law N/A N/A N/A
Communication is Clear N/A N/A N/A
Appropriate Demeanor N/A N/A N/A
Properly Controls Proceedings N/A N/A N/A
Respects Court Employees 61% 26% 13%
Jurors (n=49, 35% Response Rate)
Category Agree Partly Agree/ Partly Disagree Disagree
Exhibits Integrity 98% 0% 2%
Fair and Impartial 97% 1% 2%
Knowledgeable of Law N/A N/A N/A
Communication is Clear 96% 1% 3%
Appropriate Demeanor 97% 1% 2%
Properly Controls Proceedings 96% 2% 2%
Respects Court Employees N/A N/A N/A
Resource Staff (n=48, 10% Response Rate)
Category Agree Partly Agree/ Partly Disagree Disagree
Exhibits Integrity 70% 15% 15%
Fair and Impartial 70% 7% 22%
Knowledgeable of Law N/A N/A N/A
Communication is Clear 74% 11% 15%
Appropriate Demeanor 63% 19% 19%
Properly Controls Proceedings 81% 15% 4%
Respects Court Employees N/A N/A N/A

* On the tables above, the "Agree" columns are comprised of the strongly agree and agree responses. Similarly, the "Disagree" columns are comprised of the strongly disagree and disagree responses. The combined percentage of "Agree", "Disagree", and "Partly Agree/Partly Disagree" for each category may not equal 100% due to rounding error. "N/A" indicates that the category is "not applicable" because some populations were not asked certain questions.

 

PERCENTAGE THAT RECOMMEND THE JUDGE BE RETAINED OR NOT BE RETAINED IN OFFICE. ‡

Attorney Retain Recommendation Bar ChartCourt Staff Retain Recommendation Bar ChartResource Staff Retain Recommendation Bar Chart

‡ On the charts above, the "Retain" columns are comprised of the strongly recommend retain and somewhat recommend retain responses. Similarly, the "Do Not Retain" columns are comprised of the strongly recommend not retain and somewhat recommend not retain responses.

 

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