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Pima County court asks public for comments on commissioner nominees

Pima County is asking the public to submit their comments on candidates seeking a spot as a Superior Court Commissioner.

Superior Court Commissioners are appointed by judges of the Superior Court to decide cases involving family law, child support and enforcement, probate and guardianship, protection orders, and other similar issues.

They can also issue court orders, except injunctions, when the judge who appoints them is absent or unable to work. Various other small court actions are in their power such as taking bonds and administering oaths, per Arizona state law.

Court commissioners can also work in the Juvenile Court. Pima County has 16 court commissioner spots.

State law requires that the public have a “full and fair opportunity” to take part in appointing court commissioners. Four candidates from different law offices are up for consideration:

  • Kara Crosby, of the Pima County Attorney’s Office
  • M. June Harris, a Superior Court hearing officer in Pima County
  • Reagen Kulseth, an attorney in private practice
  • Kristin Schriner, of the Arizona Attorney General’s Office

A selection committee will interview these four on June 3, from 11 a.m. to 5, and the deadline for submitting comments is noon May 31.

Written comments on these nominees can be sent by email to scjobs@sc.pima.gov with a cc: isaar@sc.pima.gov. They can also be mailed to 110 W. Congress, 9th Floor, Tucson, AZ. 85701 or faxed to 520-724-4253.

Oral comments can also be made to the members of the selection committee. The committee includes the following people: Judge Danelle Liwski; Judge Kathleen Quigley; Judge Greg Sakall; Judge Lisa Bibbens; Jillian Aja.; Nicci Hinderaker; Marissa Sites; D. Grady Scott; Carmen Hernandez; and Lance Meeks.

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Several members of the committee work in court while the last three listed do not.

The selection committee will make their recommendations to Superior Court Presiding Judge Jeffrey Bergin, and Juvenile Court Presiding Judge Peter Hochuli. The appointment will be made June 9, following the interviews.

The vacancy for the court commissioner spot follows the retirement of Judge Kenneth Sanders.

Bennito L. Kelty is TucsonSentinel.com’s IDEA reporter, focusing on Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access stories, and a Report for America corps member.

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