Justice Raquel Montoya-Lewis was recently named Judge of the Year by the Washington State chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), a national organization that works to advance the civil jury trial and elevate the standards of the legal profession.
The Judge of the Year award recognizes an individual that strives to uphold and defend the ethics and standards of the United States judiciary system. The award is a prestigious honor and labels the recipient as an exemplary leader in the mission to promote justice and liberty for all American citizens.
Justice Montoya-Lewis has served on the Washington State Supreme Court since her appointment in December 2019. Prior to joining the Washington State Supreme Court, Justice Montoya-Lewis spent five years on the Whatcom County Superior Court. Appointed to Whatcom County Superior Court by Governor Jay Inslee in 2014, Justice Montoya-Lewis successfully retained her seat over the course of two elections.
President of the Washington State chapter of the ABOTA, Raymond Dearie, stated, "We believe that Justice Montoya-Lewis exemplifies all of the qualities of a thoughtful, prudent jurist, melding compassion, intellect and a stellar understanding of the law."
Highly respected by her peers and by ABOTA for her keen intellect, Justice Montoya-Lewis is the first Native American State Supreme Court Justice for Washington state. Justice Montoya-Lewis prides herself on accurately representing a traditionally underrepresented ethnicity.
Justice Montoya-Lewis has previously served as the Chief Judge of the Lummi Nation, the Upper Skagit Valley Indian Tribe and the Nooksack Indian Tribe. Additionally, she’s served as a trial and appellate judge for various Native American tribes across the United States.
While dedicating 15 years of judicial service to various tribal communities, Justice Montoya-Lewis also worked as a law professor at Western Washington University. As a professor, she successfully created and taught courses spanning across more than five different legal and cultural subjects.
View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201030005728/en/