In an opinion piece in the Albuquerque Journal, Judge Daniel Ramczyk of the Bernalillo County Metropolitan Court, draws upon his experiences to explain the benefits of New Mexico’s Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission (JPEC).
Ramczyk goes on to argue that the JPEC’s ability to provide judicial accountability in the state’s courts and independent information for its voters make it indispensable.
Describing JPEC’s performance evaluation and information gathering process, he writes that they “solicit responses from attorneys, law enforcement officers, court staff and jurors…these individuals are asked to evaluate judges in numerous categories, such as fairness, knowledge of the law, integrity and demeanor. JPEC collects and summarizes this data and then provides it to the judges.”
Ramczyk concludes by reflecting on the effect the JPEC evaluation process has had on him: “I am a better judge today because of this anonymous process. I am able to see myself through the eyes of the people who come into my courtroom. The JPEC process is serious business and it can mean the end of a judicial career for any judge who does not take it seriously.”