Judge Valerie Villanueva Haynes was appointed to the bench by Governor John Hickenlooper on June 28, 2011 and took the bench on July 18, 2011. As of February 1, 2012, Judge Haynes presides over Division 3 of the County Court in primarily misdemeanor and traffic cases.
Judge Haynes began her law career as a Deputy District Attorney in the 13th Judicial District, 4th Judicial District, and the 10th Judicial District between 1996 and 2000. In 2000 she transitioned to private practice with the Pueblo law firm of Petersen & Fonda, P.C., where she practiced in the areas of school law, representing various school districts, including Pueblo School District No. 60, in contract and employment matters. In addition her practice included domestic relations and representation of children in divorce and dependency and neglect matters. In 2004 Judge Haynes returned to public service in the Pueblo County Attorney's office as an Assistant County Attorney until 2011, when she was appointed to the bench.
Judge Haynes was born and raised in Pueblo and graduated from Pueblo Central High School in 1981. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Northern Colorado in 1985 and her law degree from the University of Denver in 1995. She is married and has two children.