FARMINGTON – For Robert Miller, stepping in as a part-time Farmington municipal judge is about continuing his decades of serving his community.
Miller was appointed last month by Farmington City Council and sworn in this week to fill a vacancy left by Judge Bill Standley, 83, a former mayor of Farmington, who died Feb. 19.
Miller began his career in public service in 1988 with the Farmington Police Department. He said he was possibly the youngest person to be hired by the agency at the time, when he was fresh out of high school and only 18 years old. He worked there for 20 years, serving in various roles and moving up the ranks to lieutenant.
In 2009, he went to work in the private sector in the insurance industry at a company now known as Kysar Leavitt and another called Woods Insurance.
Ten years later, Miller learned about a position at Firefighters First Credit Union, which is based in California but is accessible to members digitally across the nation.
“The job entailed me managing all of New Mexico operations and traveling the state of New Mexico to all the firehouses to meet with our members,” Miller said. “That got me back into public safety. It was kind of a nice way for me to jump back into serving those who serve.”
In 2018, he was selected to be an alternate or pro-tem judge in the event the municipal judge could not come in to serve.
“I’ve always been wired to serve the community,” Miller said. “The judgeship is just another way for me to get back to serving my local community as opposed to where I just left, Firefighters First, which is serving those who serve the community. I am big on the service side of it.”
The municipal court sees cases such as misdemeanors, batteries, shoplifting and cases not felony-related.
The position will be up for election in the fall, but Miller is unsure if he is going to run.
“This is a position that interests me and it does allow me to continue to serve my community,” Miller said. “That will ultimately be the driving factor in my decision to run for the office later in 2021 but, for now, I’m simply hoping to continue the outstanding work that Judge Standley was elected to do. This is not my term. Just a completion of his.”