Personal Biography
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 Judge Sarah Simmons

Judge Sarah Simmons
Division 29
Arizona Superior Court in Pima County


   Judge Sarah R. ("Sally") Simmons, who was named Judge of the Year by the Arizona Supreme Court in 2015, grew up in Miami, Arizona. Judge Simmons graduated with high honors from the University of Arizona in 1970 with a degree in history. She then attended the University of Arizona College of Law for two years before transferring to the University of Denver where she received her Juris Doctorate with high honors in 1973.

   Upon graduation from law school, Judge Simmons practiced in Denver for a short time before returning to Tucson to work at the law firm of Molloy, Jones and Donahue, P.C. She worked at that firm as an associate from 1974-77 and as a shareholder from 1978-1992. She was employed as of-counsel at the law firm of Brown & Bain, P.A. from 1993-94 and was a shareholder in that firm from 1994-2002. In 2002, Judge Simmons became a partner at the law firm of Lewis and Roca LLP, and served in that capacity until her appointment to the Superior Court in January of 2006.

   Since her appointment, Judge Simmons has served on the Family Law and Juvenile benches, and currently serves on the Civil Bench. She was Presiding Family Law Judge from January 2007 until February 2009, Presiding Judge of the Juvenile Court from June 2009 until May 2011 and the Presiding Judge of Pima County from May 2011 until July 2015.  She currently serves on the Supreme Court’s Committee on Victims in the Courts and the Committee on Time Standards, and previously served on the following Supreme Court Committees: Task Force on Governance of the State Bar, Arizona Judicial Council, Committee on Juvenile Courts, Judicial Performance Review Committee and the Supreme Court Guidelines on Child Support Review.

   Judge Simmons has been active in both bar association and community activities. She was president of the State Bar of Arizona in 1993-94, having served as a member of the Board of Governors from 1987-95. She was a member of the Pima County Bar Association Board of Directors from 1985-95. Judge Simmons was also the first chair of the State Bar of Arizona's Committee on Persons with Disabilities in the Legal Profession, serving in that capacity from 2000-2005.

   In the Tucson community, Judge Simmons serves as an emeritus member of the DM-50 Board of Directors. She is a member of the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law's Law College Association Board of Directors and Board of Visitors, having served as president of the former and co-chair of the latter. She was also president of the Tohono Chul Park Board of Directors and of the Metropolitan Tucson Convention and Visitors Bureau, a member of the Tucson Airport Authority and its Board of Directors, and has served on numerous other charitable or civic boards, including the Arizona Town Hall and United Way.

   Judge Simmons was the Tucson Chamber of Commerce Woman of the Year in 1994, and a recipient of the YWCA Women on the Move Award in 1995. She received the Women's Studies Advisory Council Women Who Lead Award in 2003, the Southern Arizona chapter of the Arizona Women Lawyers Alice Truman Award in 2003 and an Inside Tucson Business Woman of Influence designation in 2005. Judge Simmons was named one of the 100 Minorities and Women in the Law by the State Bar of Arizona/Maricopa County Bar in 2001, was the co-Member of the Year for the State Bar in 2004 and was named one of the top 50 pro bono attorneys in Arizona by the Arizona Foundation for Legal Services and Education in 2004.

Last Updated: 11/8/2016 10:45:00 AM
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