Best Rookie Judge (2003)
You wouldn't think that a former assistant district attorney who was named "Prosecutor of the Year" by law enforcement boosters for her zealous pursuit of child abuse cases that had grown old and cold would make the most impartial judge. It might prove too difficult to keep an open mind so that both sides--prosecution and defense--get a fair and unbiased hearing. But the book on newly elected Susan Hawk, who at 32 was the youngest candidate running for a felony bench, is that she has acquitted herself in a fine fashion. Although she has yet to preside over the kind of high-profile case that might really try her sense of justice, she is a good listener, a good learner and someone who strives to do the right thing. What more could you want from a new judge?