2015: New Mexico Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission Announces Appointment of Two New Members

ALBUQUERQUE --The New Mexico Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission (JPEC) has announced the appointments of Anita Sanchez of Rio Rancho and Joseph Arite of Grants, New Mexico as new members.

JPEC was established by the Supreme Court of New Mexico in 1997 as a volunteer, nonpartisan commission to improve the performance of New Mexico’s judges while providing useful, credible information to voters on judges standing for retention elections.

Sanchez is a partner in the Rio Rancho law firm of Sanchez & Piñon, a firm specializing in personal injury law.

She was born and raised in Santa Fe and attended the University of New Mexico, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and a juris doctor from the University of New Mexico School of Law. Her experience includes practicing on both sides of civil and personal injury law by representing both insurance companies and businesses.

Sanchez has received the highest peer rating of “AV-Preeminent,” which reflects the peak of professionalism and ethical standards in practicing law, according to the Martindale-Hubbell national peer review rating system that tracks rankings of attorneys and judges as rated by their peers.

Arite is a sole practitioner with the Arite Law Firm in Grants, New Mexico, practicing criminal and civil law. He is a graduate of the University of New Mexico, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics in 1982. He attended the Loyola University School of Law in Chicago, Ill., earning his juris doctor in 1985.

Arite served as the Cibola County Assistant District Attorney (1987-1997), Cibola County Magistrate Judge (1997-1998), District Judge for the Thirteenth Judicial District (1999-2000) and as the Sandoval County Deputy District Attorney (2003-2009).

In addition to his law practice, Arite serves as a prosecutor for the Pueblo of Acoma Tribal Court system in Acoma, New Mexico.

The New Mexico Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission is comprised of 15 individuals - seven lawyers and eight non-lawyers--who are appointed by the Supreme Court to staggered terms.

Members are selected from nominations made by the Governor, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Speaker of the House, Senate President Pro Tempore, House Minority Leader, Senate Minority Leader and President of the State Bar.
For more information about the Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission, interested individuals may call Louise Baca-Sena, Court Services Division Director, at (505) 827-4960, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit the Commission’s website at www.nmjpec.org

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