Though 20th Judicial District Court Judge Norma Sierra found herself in the job unexpectedly, she reveres the position.
“I know of very few people who set out to be judges, who from child-hood considered that they wanted to be judges. It’s quite an honor but not one I ever would have anticipated achieving.” Sierra said.
She takes her work but not herself seriously, a piece of advice from her predecessor, Dolores Mallard, that she employs often. Her office pays homage to this as well — one wall displays her degrees and licenses, the other adorned with her own crafts, artwork and tapestries from her children and her home.
Sierra has lived in Colorado longer than anywhere else, but she hasn’t forgotten her roots. She was born in El Paso, Texas, but lived fluidly on both sides of the Mexican border growing up. With Spanish as a first language, she and her sister ‘played pretend’ speaking English when they were young. She lived on the Mexico side until she was 10. Her mother was a seamstress and her father a baker, so she didn’t anticipate her success in judicial life.