When Pamela B. Minzner was appointed by Gov. Bruce King to the New Mexico Supreme Court in 1994 she became the second woman to sit on the state's highest court. Later, she became the first woman to serve as chief justice. She remained on the court until her death in August 2007.
Justice Minzner joined the UNM School of Law faculty in 1973 after working in private practice in both Boston and Albuquerque. She was a 1968 graduate of Harvard Law School. At UNM, she was loved by her students and colleagues, receiving the highly esteemed Faculty Award in 1977 and 1981. She was a striking example of what a woman could accomplish within the legal landscape at a time when that wasn’t easy.
In 1984, she was appointed by Gov. Toney Anaya to the New Mexico Court of Appeals, where she served for a decade and was the chief judge from 1993 to 1994.
Justice Minzner was one of the most highly respected and admired members of New Mexico’s legal community. She made lasting marks on the legal landscape with her intellect, graciousness and love of the law. Even more significant was her gentle smile and ability to treat everyone with dignity, respect and genuine thoughtfulness.