Q&A: 2nd Judicial District Court Candidate Courtney B. Weaks
- NAME: Courtney B. Weaks
- POLITICAL PARTY: Democratic
- OCCUPATION: Metropolitan Court judge, Division 4
- CITY OF RESIDENCE: Albuquerque
- RELEVANT EXPERIENCE: I began my career at the District Attorney’s Office upon graduation from law school where I prosecuted misdemeanors in Metropolitan Court and went on to prosecute felony DWI cases including vehicular homicides. I then worked in private practice, practicing both domestic relations and criminal defense. After being found qualified by the independent bipartisan Judicial Nominating Commission in 2013, I went on to win a general election for my current seat as a judge for Metropolitan Court, Division 4 in 2014. In the last six years, I have been heavily involved in treatment courts, eventually becoming the presiding judge of the Metro’s Specialty Court Programs. I am also a member of the executive committee of the Bernalillo County’s Criminal Justice Coordinating Council’s (BCJCC) Reintegration and Reentry Committee. I acted as the chair for the Supreme Court’s Committee for the Improvement of Jury Service in New Mexico for three years as well. I was recommended to be retained by the New Mexico Judicial Performance Evaluation Committee in 2018 and was voted to be retained by the general electorate that same year.
- EDUCATION: 2004 University of Kansas, Bachelor of Arts in English, 2007 University of New Mexico School of Law, J.D.
- CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: electjudgeweaks.com
- MAJOR PROFESSIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENT: Becoming a judge in 2014 is definitely my greatest professional accomplishment. As a member of the judiciary, I am uniquely situated to improve our community and am keenly aware of my ability and obligation to provide procedural justice to all members of the community who come through my courtroom including defendants, attorneys, police officers, and other witnesses. This means making sure that everyone feels as though they have a voice, they are understood, and most importantly feel respected. When this is achieved, people feel motivated not only to be a better version of themselves, but also to improve their community.
- MAJOR PERSONAL ACCOMPLISHMENT: The fact that I am a mother is my simplest and by far most major personal accomplishment. Since having my daughter I have keener sense of the importance of patience, empathy, and not taking things personally. I also now, more than ever, have strong desire to make Bernalillo County the best it can possibly be so she has a safe community to grow up in where she also feels we are here to support and take care of one another .
Why are you running and what strengths would you bring to the judiciary?
I have been a criminal court judge for the past six years. I have experience as both a prosecutor and a defense attorney. This experience of working on both sides uniquely qualifies me to be not only fair and impartial, but also makes me keenly aware of the importance of providing community safety and enforcing the law. My involvement with the BCJCC and various specialty courts has also given me the opportunity to work closely and collaborate with various stakeholders in the criminal justice system. Reducing crime and improving outcomes are the end goals and learning to address those issues in a collective manner is key to systemic improvements that promote public safety, reduce recidivism and improve how all stakeholders interact and operate within the broader system. All of my interaction within these programs and committees is on top of the daily docket I call every day. I am the candidate who is willing to put in the extra hours and involve myself within the criminal justice community to strengthen our criminal justice system and make our community better. I want to ensure as much as possible that offenders are given the opportunity to not offend in the future through appropriate programs, while levying appropriate sentences when necessary.
1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state or federal tax liens?
2. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?
3. Have you ever been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of drunken driving, any misdemeanor or any felony in New Mexico or any other state?