Bennet Announces Bipartisan Selection Advisory Committee to Fill Federal Court Vacancy

Washington, DC - Today, Senator Michael Bennet announced the formation of a bipartisan advisory committee that will implement an open process to recommend highly qualified applicants to fill an upcoming vacancy on the U.S. District Court in Colorado, created by Judge Robert Blackburn's taking senior status on April 12, 2016.

Given the overwhelming dockets the court currently faces and the need to provide access to timely and efficient justice, Senator Bennet is moving forward with a bipartisan committee in advance of Judge Blackburn taking senior status. This bipartisan process reflects Senator Bennet's interest in a nonpartisan, merit selection system that is consistent with the University of Denver's Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System's (IAALS) recommendations.

Hal Haddon, former co-chair of previous advisory panels and a Denver lawyer, and Candy Figa, a prominent attorney in the Denver metro area, who has also been active in civic affairs, including serving as a City Councilmember and Mayor Pro tem of Greenwood Village and on the 18th Judicial Nominating Commission, will serve as bipartisan co-chairs.

Co-chairs Haddon and Figa are seeking highly qualified individuals to apply. Application forms can be found on Senator Bennet's website and are due to Senator Bennet's office by November 23, 2015.

"We look forward to the expert advice and counsel of this advisory panel in evaluating potential nominees for this vital appointment. I am confident we will identify outstanding candidates to submit to the President for consideration," Bennet said.

Committee Chairs:
Candy Figa, Burns, Figa, and Will
Hal Haddon, Haddon, Morgan, and Foreman

R. Stanton Dodge, DISH Network Corporation
April Jones, Jones Law Firm, PC
Frances Koncilja, The Koncilja Law Firm
Cynthia Mares, Arapahoe County Public Trustee
Gordon W. Netzorg, Sherman & Howard L.L.C.
Ken Spann, Spann Ranches, Incorporated
Shannon Stevenson, Davis Graham & Stubbs
Michael Theis, Hogan Lovells US LLP
Carolynne C. White, Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, LLP

FAQ's and Procedures

Where can I find an application for consideration? Qualified individuals should obtain application forms and instructions here: (Application or Instructions)
When are applications due back to the Senator's office? To ensure consideration, applications must be received by November 23, 2015.

If I applied to Senator Gardner's Committee, do I need to reapply for consideration? Applicants interested in consideration for a recommendation for nomination from this committee must submit an application by the deadline of November 23, 2015.

Is this application the same as the application used for Senator Gardner's Advisory Panel? Both committees used a modified version of the U.S. Judiciary Committee's Application for Judicial Nomination and therefore are substantially the same. Please resubmit your application to this committee with an updated signed affidavit.

How should I submit my completed application, attachments, and letters of reference? Applicants will submit their entire completed application with all attachments and letters of reference as a single PDF to a confidential Dropbox. To obtain instructions on uploading to Dropbox, please use the following link: (Instructions).

How will I know if I am granted an interview? Senator Bennet's staff will notify interviewees the week of December 7 of their selection for an interview with the committee and schedule interview times.

When will interviews take place and for how long? Currently, interviews will take place on December 15 - 16, 2015 in Central Denver. Each interview will be 30 minutes in length.

If I have further questions, who can I contact for assistance? Please email Senator Bennet's office at or call Sarah Hughes at 303-455-7600.

Application Due: November 23
Committee Interviews Applicants: Dec 15 - 16