United States District Court for the District of Colorado

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District of Colorado
Tenth Circuit
Judges: 7
Posts: 7
Vacancies: 0
Active judges
Chief: Marcia Krieger
Senior Judges
Magistrate Judges
Former Judges
(Numbers indicate % of seats vacant.)
More than 40%

The United States District Court for the District of Colorado is one of ninety-four United States district courts. The court is based out of Denver at the Alfred A. Arraj United States Courthouse. It also has a second courthouse in Denver and courts in Colorado Springs, Grand Junction and Durango. When decisions of the court are appealed, they are appealed to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals based in downtown Denver at the Byron White Federal Courthouse.

The United States Attorney for the District of Colorado represents the United States in civil and criminal litigation in the court. The current district attorney is John F. Walsh.[1]

Vacancy warning level

The United States District Court for the District of Colorado's vacancy warning level is currently set at green. The court currently has no vacancies with all seven posts filled.

Pending nominations

There are no pending nominations for the United States District Court for the District of Colorado.

Active judges

Article III judges

JudgeBornHomeAppointed byActiveChiefPreceededBachelorsLaw
Chief judge Marcia Krieger1954W. Bush 1/30/2002 - Present1/1/2013 - PresentDaniel SparrLewis and Clark College, B.A., 1975University of Colorado Law, J.D., 1979
Judge Robert Blackburn1950Lakewood, COW. Bush 3/6/2002 - PresentZita WeinshienkWestern State College, 1972University of Colorado Law, 1974
Judge Christine Arguello1955Thatcher, COW. Bush 10/21/2008 - PresentWalker MillerUniversity of Colorado, B.S., 1977Harvard Law, J.D., 1980
Judge Philip Brimmer1959Rawlins, WY.W. Bush 10/14/2008 - PresentLewis BabcockHarvard, A.B., 1981Yale Law, J.D., 1985
Judge R. Brooke Jackson1947Bozeman, MTObama 8/2/2011 - PresentPhillip FigaDartmouth '69Harvard Law '72
Judge William J. Martinez1954Mexico City, MexicoObama 12/21/2010 - PresentEdward NottinghamUniversity of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, B.Sc. & B.A., 1977University of Chicago Law, J.D., 1980
Judge Raymond P. Moore1953Boston, MAObama 3/23/2013 - PresentWiley DanielYale, B.A., 1975Yale Law, J.D., 1978

Active Article III judges by appointing political party

This graph displays the percent of active judges by the party of the appointing president and does not reflect how a judge may rule on specific cases or their own political preferences.


Senior judges

JudgeAppointed byActiveChiefSeniorBachelorsLaw
Senior judge Richard MatschNixon 3/8/1974-7/1/20031994-20007/1/2003-PresentUniversity of Michigan, 1951University of Michigan Law, 1953
Senior judge John KaneCarter 12/16/1977 - 4/8/19884/8/1988 - PresentUniversity of Colorado, B.A., 1958University of Denver Law, J.D., 1960
Senior Judge Walker MillerClinton 7/25/1996 - 4/1/20084/1/2008 - PresentUniversity of Colorado Law, 1963University of Chicago Law, 1965
Senior Judge Lewis BabcockReagan 10/17/1988-4/4/20082000-20074/4/2008-PresentUniversity of Denver, 1965University of Denver Law, 1968
Senior Judge Wiley DanielClinton 6/30/1995-1/1/20132008-20131/1/2013-PresentHoward University, 1968Howard University Law, 1971

Senior judges by appointing political party

This graph displays the percent of senior judges by the party of the appointing president and does not reflect how a judge may rule on specific cases or their own political preferences.


Magistrate judges

Magistrate judge David West2004 - PresentColorado College, B.A.University of Colorado at Boulder Law, J.D.
Magistrate judge Kathleen Tafoya09/11/2007 - PresentUniversity of Colorado School of Law, J.D.
Magistrate judge Kristen Mix08/06/2007 - PresentUniversity of Colorado Law, J.D., 1985
Magistrate judge Michael Hegarty02/15/2006 - Present
Magistrate judge Craig ShafferTulane University, 1979
Magistrate judge Michael Watanabe02/12/1999 - Present
Magistrate judge Gordon Gallagher10/12/2012 - Present
Magistrate Judge Nina Y. Wang2/9/2015-2/8/2023Washington UniversityHarvard Law School


The Counties of Colorado (click for larger map)

The District of Colorado has original jurisdiction over cases filed within its jurisdiction. These cases can include civil and criminal matters that fall under federal law.

The jurisdiction of the District of Colorado consists of all the counties in the state of Colorado.




Federal Court Caseload Statistics*
YearStarting case load:Cases filed:Total cases:Cases terminated:Remaining cases:Median time (Criminal)**:Median time (Civil)**:Three-year civil cases#:Vacant posts:## Trials/Post
2013 3229423074594153 33068.86.280 (3.2%)2.622
2012 3096428273784153 32258.85.582 (3.4%)025
2011 3181419873794302 307795.758 (2.8%)12.722
2010 3091406171524001 31519.75.860 (2.7%)2425
2009 3010395969693903 306696.364 (2.8%)2320
2008 2871363765083491 30177.96.985 (3.8%)20.423
2007259235596151348226698.76.990 (4.3%)020
*All statistics are taken from the Official Federal Courts' Website and reflect the calendar year through September.

**Time in months from filing to completion.
#This statistic includes cases which have been appealed in higher courts.

##This is the total number of months that any judicial posts had spent vacant that year.

Notable cases

For a searchable list of opinions, please see Opinions for the District of Colorado.


The District of Colorado was established by Congress on June 26, 1876, with one post to cover the entire state. Over time, six additional judicial posts were added for a total of seven current posts.[3]

Judicial posts

The following table highlights the development of judicial posts for the District of Kansas:[3]

Year Statute Total Seats
June 26, 1876 19 Stat. 61 1
February 10, 1954 68 Stat. 8 2
May 19, 1961 75 Stat. 80 3
June 2, 1970 84 Stat. 294 4
October 20, 1978 92 Stat. 1629 6
July 10, 1984 98 Stat. 333 7

Former chief judges

In order to qualify for the office of chief judge in one of the federal courts, a judge must have been in active service on the court for at least one year, be under the age of 65, and have not previously served as chief judge. A vacancy in the office of chief judge is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the group of qualified judges. The chief judge serves for a term of seven years or until age 70, whichever occurs first. The age restrictions are waived if no members of the court would otherwise be qualified for the position. Unlike the Chief Justice of the United States, a chief judge returns to active service after the expiration of his or her term and does not create a vacancy on the bench by the fact of his or her promotion.[4][5]

Former judges

For more information about the judges of the District of Colorado, see former federal judges of the District of Colorado.

See also

External links


ColoradoColorado Supreme CourtColorado Court of AppealsColorado District CourtsColorado county courtsDenver Probate Court, ColoradoDenver Juvenile CourtUnited States District Court for the District of ColoradoUnited States Court of Appeals for the Tenth CircuitColorado countiesColorado judicial newsColorado judicial electionsJudicial selection in ColoradoColoradoTemplatewithoutBankruptcy.jpg