Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has appointed Santa Fe attorney Shannon Broderick Bulman to fill a vacant judgeship in the First Judicial District left by the Dec. 31 retirement of state District Judge Raymond Z. Ortiz.
“I’m very grateful for this opportunity to serve the people of Northern New Mexico, and I appreciate the governor’s confidence in making this appointment,” Bulman said Friday. “Judge Ortiz leaves a tremendous legacy of service to our community, and I’m honored to assume responsibility for his division.”
As the Division III judge in the First Judicial District, Ortiz presided primarily over civil cases in Santa Fe, Rio Arriba and Los Alamos counties since 2005.
But Bulman said Chief Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer has shuffled dockets slightly in the eight-judge district, giving Judge Maria Sanchez-Gagne the civil case docket. Bulman will preside over family court cases, which is more in keeping with her professional experience.
Bulman worked as a family court hearing officer in the First Judicial District for several years before her appointment to the bench.
Santa Fe County voters elected Bulman as probate judge in 2014, but she resigned in 2017, about six months short of completing her three-year term, to take the hearing officer job.
Bulman was born in Hayward, Calif., and obtained her undergraduate degree at the University of Connecticut in 1985 and her law degree from the University of New Mexico School of Law in 1989, according to her application for the post.
She worked as assistant general counsel for the state Department of Public Safety and the Human Services Department before starting her own law practice in 1996 with an emphasis on elder law issues, including wills and probate.
Bulman — who will be paid approximately $134,000 per year — beat out six other applicants for the appointment.
In order to remain on the bench, she’ll have to be elected in the November general election and be affirmed by 57 percent of voters in retention elections every six years thereafter.