Christine Marie Arguello

In 2008, Christine Marie Arguello became the first Hispanic United States District Court Judge for the District of Colorado, attaining with that appointment another of the historic firsts that mark her distinguished legal career. She was the first Latina from Colorado to be admitted to Harvard University School of Law. She was the first Hispanic to be promoted to partner at one of the then “big four” law firms in Colorado and the first Latina to be tenured and promoted to full professor at University of Kansas School of Law. Arguello is respected for her expertise in the Federal Rules of Evidence and is the co-author of a leading casebook on evidence, Evidence: The Objection Method. In 2000, Arguello became the first Hispanic Chief Deputy Attorney General for Colorado. Her service as Senior Managing Counsel at University of Colorado Boulder, her undergraduate alma mater, was interrupted by her appointment to the United States District Court bench, where she works hard to meet the Court’s mission of serving the public by providing a fair and impartial forum that ensures equal access to justice in accordance with the rule of law, protects rights and liberties of all persons, and resolves cases in a timely and efficient manner.

Born in rural Colorado to a large and very poor family, and steeped in a culture where women had subservient positions, Arguello decided at a very young age that education would be the key to breaking those cultural norms. While managing her legal career and her family with her supportive husband and children, Arguello also stresses the importance of giving back to the community. At the young age of 32 she was the first Latina elected to the Board of Education for Colorado Springs School District 11 and served on the boards of Pikes Peak Legal Services and Pikes Peak United Way and the advisory council of SER Employment for Older Americans. She has held leadership positions on both the Colorado Hispanic and Colorado Women’s Bar Associations. Her passion, however, is mentoring students and young adults at all levels. At KU she founded the KU Law School/Lawrence High School Partnership program and was a co-founder of the Hispanic Network of KU. She has mentored numerous high school, college, law school students, and young lawyers, both informally and through programs like the Circle of Latina Leadership Program. She leads the “Arguello Dream Team,” a group of lawyers who travel across Colorado to speak to students and parents about the importance of education and encourage them to “Dare to Dream Big!” To contact the Dream Team for a presentation in Colorado, go to their website, www.arguellodreamteam.com.

In Her Words