Gail Nichols appointed as judge |

Gail Nichols appointed as judge

Charles Agar
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS ” Deputy District Attorney Gail Nichols will don the black robe and take the bench in a new 9th Judicial District judgeship to begin July 1, according to state officials.

The competition came down to three finalists ” all of whom reside in Aspen ” Nichols, Assistant City Attorney Jim True and Assistant County Attorney Chris Seldin. The three were among a handful who applied and were chosen by a nominating committee, but the final decision was up to Gov. Bill Ritter.

On Monday afternoon, officials at the governor’s office wouldn’t confirm the appointment, but said they planned to issue a news release Tuesday.

But Rob McCallum, public information officer with the Colorado Judicial Branch, confirmed shortly before 5 p.m. Monday that Nichols got the job.

A source knowledgeable of the decision also confirmed Nichols’ appointment.

Nichols said she couldn’t comment until there was official word from the governor’s office.

Nichols, 57, a native of Massachusetts, graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder and earned a law degree from the Vermont Law School. She clerked for an appeals judge in a Philadelphia circuit court, worked for a New York law firm, then became a prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney in New Jersey, where she worked as a defense attorney. She then became head of criminal prosecution in New Jersey.

Nichols moved to Aspen to become deputy district attorney in 2003, with a short break from April 2005 to January 2006.

While it’s uncertain where exactly Nichols will preside, the new judgeship was created in response to the increased caseload in Garfield County, according to officials. Nichols likely will be in the Garfield County Court building in Glenwood Springs.

The beginning salary for the new judgeship is $118,972 a year. Nichols will have a provisional term of two years. Thereafter, if voters keep Nichols in the position, the job will be for a six-year term.

Neither True nor Seldin could be reached for comment.


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