Dorothy E. Binder
April 10, 1923-April30, 2017
Edward (Ed) Cleveland
December 11, 1921-April 10, 2017
Richard Frank Mauro
July 21, 1945-May 22, 2017 Tributes
The Honorable Dorothy E. Binder, juvenile court magistrate, county court judge, and district court judge, passed away on April 30, 2017, in Denver. Only a handful of you knew or have even heard of Dorothy, but her accomplishments are significant to Colorado and Adams County and should be recognized.
Doro thy was formally trained as a mechanical draftsman. During WWII, she worked in that area as well as being a "Rosie the Riveter" in Michigan building B-24 bombers. She moved to Colorado in 1947 and graduated from the University of Denver (DU) in 1950 as a Phi Beta Kappa scholar while doing every kind of job imaginable, from waitress to janitor. She then became a social worker for the Denver Department of Social Services, in addition to being a member of the Naval Reserve.
Dorothy entered law school in 1953 at the Westminster School of Law (now DU Sturm College of Law) and graduated first in her class. I'm guessing that she was the first female law student to do so. She then went on to be the first female deputy district attorney in the history of Colorado, serving in Denver, Arapahoe, and Adams counties.
In 1971, Judge Jean J. Jacobucci appointed her to be the juvenile court commissioner (magistrate), and in 1974, when the Colorado Legislature gave Adams County a fourth county court judge, she was appointed to that position. She was not the first female county judge in Adams County—Judge Maureen Hallock takes that honor—but in 1978 she became the first female district court judge in the 17th Judicial District, holding that position until 1986. Her elevation to the district court was an important event for me, because I was fortunate enough to be selected to take her vacated spot, and she was instrumental in my elevation to the district court bench inl984.
For all of her accomplishments, Dorothy was a quiet, private, and humble person. I think that at times it was...