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Judge Mary Yunker

Judicial Experience:

Sherburne County District Court Judge

  • Presiding over all cases filed in the district courts of Minnesota, including criminal, civil, family and juvenile matters
  • Appointed by Governor Tim Pawlenty on Oct. 1, 2004. Elected in 2006, 2012, and 2018. Current term expires Jan. 2025. 

Chief, Sherburne County Bench, 2007-2009
Chair, Sherburne County Children’s Justice Initiative Committee, 2005-2007
Chair, Sherburne County Criminal Justice Coordinating Committee, 2008-2010

Lecturing and Teaching Experience:

Minnesota District Judges Association/Foundation  
  • Annual Criminal Law Update, MDJA/MDJF Fall Conference, 2005 – present
    Comprehensive review of federal and Minnesota appellate court decisions and rule changes
  • Annual New/Senior Judge Review, MDJA/MDJF Fall Conference, 2005 – present
    Practical review of day-to-day judging in the district courts
Annual Conferences of Judges, Minnesota Supreme Court
  • Education Planning Committee, 2010
  • Author of Materials/Presenter, “The Path to a Legal Sentencing Departure,” 2010
Minnesota Judicial College
  • Curriculum Planning Committee, 2006 – 2008
  • Author of Materials/Presenter, “Alternative Perpetrator Evidence,”  2007
  • Co-Author of Materials/Co-Presenter, “Evidentiary Issues in Civil Trials,” 2008
University of Minnesota Law School Judicial Trial Skills Training Program
  • Mentor/Critiquer for New Judge Practicum, 2008, 2011, 2012 
National District Attorneys Association
  • Faculty member, National College of Advocacy, Columbia, SC, 2003-2004
    Taught courses on Trial Advocacy, Ethics and Pre-Trial Procedure
Minnesota County Attorneys Association
  • Faculty member, James E. Preece Trial Advocacy School, Bemidji, 1991–2002
    Taught trial advocacy to both prosecutors and defense attorneys
  • Faculty member, MCCA Trial School, 2005
    Trial advocacy critiquer
  • Co-Author of Materials/Co-Presenter, “Ethical Issues for Prosecutors,” 1999 – 2009
    Annual ethics training for prosecutors
  • Author of Written Materials/Presenter, Various Courses
    • Prosecution of Child Abuse,” 1992, 1993, 1996
    • Evidence for Prosecutors,” 1995
    • Revenue Sources for County Attorneys,” 2003 
St. Cloud State University
  • Adjunct Faculty, Criminal Justice Department, 1995–1999
    Taught courses on Criminal Procedure and Criminal Law
Rasmussen Business College, St. Cloud, Minnesota  
  • Faculty, taught Business Law, 1991–1996
Law Enforcement Training  
  • Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, 1997–2001
    Semi-Annual Statutory Update, Criminal Justice Information Systems Seminar
  • Local Law Enforcement, 1984–2004 
    Routine Statutory, Case Law and Procedural Training

Professional Memberships

Minnesota District Judges Foundation, 2009–present
  • Board Member, 2009–present
  • Co-Chair, Education and Planning Committee, 2009–present
Minnesota District Judges Association, 2004–present
  • Co-Chair, Education and Planning Committee, 2005–2009
  • Member, Criminal Jury Instructions Committee, 2005–present
Criminal Bench Book Committee, 2007–present
  • Author, Chapter 3, Procedures Following Arrest
National District Attorneys Association, 2003–2004
  • Faculty member, National College of Advocacy, Columbia, South Carolina
Minnesota County Attorneys Association, 1985–2004
  • Member, Co-Chair and Chair, Education Committee, 1990–2004
  • Member, Educational Foundation, 1999–2004
  • Member, Criminal Law Committee, 1988–2000
  • Faculty member, James E. Preece Trial Advocacy School, Bemidji, 1991–2002
Stearns/Benton Bar Association, 1986–2002
  • Secretary-Treasurer, Vice President and President, 1997–1999
John E. Simonett Inn of Court, 1998–2004
  • Secretary-Treasurer, 2001
Richard T. Oakes Inn of Court, 2008–2010

Professional Experience

District Court Judge – Tenth Judicial District, 2004–present
Chief Deputy Sherburne County Attorney, 2003–2004
Assistant Stearns County Attorney, 1986–2003

  • Chief, Criminal Division, 1988–2003
Assistant Scott County Attorney, 1985

Assistant Mankato City Attorney, 1984–1985
District Court Law Clerk – Minnesota Ninth Judicial District, 1982–1984
Staff Attorney – Civil Aeronautics Board, Washington, D.C., 1980–1982


J.D., Northwestern University School of Law, 1980
Bachelor of Applied Studies, University of Minnesota, 1977