News Column

Panel Recommends Judicial Candidates to Gov. Martinez

Dec. 14, 2014

Nico Roesler

Gov. Susana Martinez
Gov. Susana Martinez

The 15-person Judicial Nominating Commission has submitted to the governor a list of five applicants for the vacant seat on the First Judicial District bench left by Judge Barbara Vigil's election to the state Supreme Court.

The committee interviewed 14 applicants on Wednesday before recommending the five names to Gov. Susana Martinez, who has 30 days to appoint the new judge.

The nominees, in alphabetical order, are:

--Bryan P. Biedscheid, 44, a member of the Sawtell, Wirth & Biedscheid law firm in Santa Fe, specializing in civil litigation, civil appeals, real-estate law, trust litigation and guardianship.

--Sonya Carrasco-Trujillo, 37, the deputy counsel for the state Department of Public Safety and a staff judge advocate for the New Mexico Army National Guard. She also is a judge pro-tem at Santa Fe Municipal Court.

--Paul William Grace, 59, a member of the Hemphill & Grace law firm in Santa Fe, specializing in banking, failed financial institutions and professional insurance law. He also worked for the Federal Home Loan Bank Board in Washington, D.C.

--B. Cullen Hallmark, 54, a member of the Garber and Hallmark law firm in Santa Fe, where he has a general civil practice specializing in the areas of estate planning, real estate and probate law.

--Joseph Edward Manges, 56, has been a partner with the Comeau, Maldegen, Templeman & Indall firm since 1983, specializing in personal injury and commercial law. Manges also applied for former judge Michael Vigil's vacant seat.

--Francis Joseph Mathew, 60, formerly of the Jones, Snead, Wertheim & Wentworth firm, now has his own practice in Santa Fe, specializing in banking law and commercial litigation.

The nominating commission included Supreme Court Chief Justice Petra Jimenez-Maez, Chief Judge Timothy Garcia of the state Court of Appeals and Barbara Bergman, chairwoman of The University of New Mexico School of Law.

Source: (c)2012 The Santa Fe New Mexican (Santa Fe, N.M.) Distributed by MCT Information Services

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