Colleague remembers Maricopa County Judge Rosa Mroz as a good friend, respected jurist
PHOENIX — A Maricopa County Superior Court judge on Monday remembered his colleague Rosa Mroz as a highly respected, knowledgeable judge but above all a good friend following her death over the weekend from a car-pedestrian collision.
“Rosa was basically everything to this court,” Frank Moskowitz told KTAR News 92.3 FM. “Highly respected, knowledgeable and experienced judge who inspired confidence in just everyone that appeared before her.
“If you ask any of us, she was our mentor and our best friend and that’s how she made you feel when you were with her.”
Former Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano appointed Mroz to the bench in 2004. Prior to her death, she was assigned to the criminal department of the Maricopa County Judicial Branch.
“She not only had a wealth of experience and information but more importantly, she willingly shared it with all of us, all of her colleagues,” Moskowitz said.
Moskowitz said Mroz presided over some of the most serious cases on the court, including capital cases where the death penalty is sought.
“Rosa took on the hardest, the most difficult of cases and assignments and made them look easy,” he said. “She led by example.
“To have Rosa as your judge, how ever you were impacted as a victim, a defendant, a plaintiff, whatever it was, if she was your judge, hopefully, she’s the one that would change your view and give you confidence in the system,” he said.
Mroz was all about making connections, Moskowitz said, from hosting dinner parties, lunches or reaching out to those new to the bench.
“That’s so important when you are a judicial officer because there’s a lot of solitary confinement, there’s a lot of aloneness,” he said.
“She was always present with you, she always made you feel like she was there for you, she was your best friend, your mentor. That’s a special quality and not everyone has it.”
Chief Justice Robert M. Brutinel in a statement also remembered Mroz on Monday as “hard-working, unfailingly collegial, and a good friend.”
He said Mroz led the Probate and Mental Health Department from 2010 to 2013 during a time of transition and was a leader in improving the judicial system statewide through serving on many commissions and committees.
She also recently developed standards for the resolution of probate cases, Brutinel said.
Mroz died Saturday after being hit by a car on Wednesday while was crossing the street in the area of 56th Street and Camelback Road.
“Rosa was truly, truly one of the good ones,” Moskowitz said. “She will be sorely missed by so many.”
KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Colton Krolak contributed to this report.