Denver Bar Association
July 2005
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Legal Affairs


Congratulations to the newest Elected Fellows to the American Bar Foundation: Donald K. Bain, Frederick J. Baumann, A. Bruce Campbell, Steven W. Farber, Gregory B. Kanan, Howard Kenison, Pamela R. Mackey, John W. Madden III, Bobbee J. Musgrave, Thomas J. Overton, David M. Powell, Daniel M. Reilly, Barbara Salomon, Willie Shepherd, Harris D. Sherman, Roger P. Thomasch, and Brooke Wunnicke.

Karen J. Mathis, partner in McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter, received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and delivered the commencement address in May.

The University of Denver’s Frank H. Ricketson, Jr. Law Building has been awarded the Gold Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification.

Nick McKeever, Susan Bernhardt and Peter Koclanes are pleased to announce that their partner, Gordon W. Netzorg, CTLA President, has been inducted in the American College of Trial Lawyers.


Jim Spaanstra of Faegre & Benson was appointed to the Colorado Commission on Judicial Discipline by Gov. Bill Owens.

Three Holland and Hart attorneys, Scott Barker, Anne Castle, and Triplett Mackintosh, represent detainees currently incarcerated at Guantañamo Bay and were part of
the Center for Constitutional Rights’ independent commission to investigate torture.

Karen Salaz, public affairs officer for the Colorado Judicial Department, was awarded the "Jean Otto Friend of Freedom Award" by the Colorado Freedom of Information Council on May 31.

Tom S. Rice gave an excellent pro bono presentation to the law enforcement executives enrolled in the University of Colorado Criminal Justice Masters Degree Program.

Holland & Hart was recognized as the top firm in the U.S. and as one of the top five law firms globally in the legal mining field, according to the 2005 International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers.

Jim Castle of Castle & Castle has been appointed one of 60 attorneys worldwide to practice before the International Criminal Court in the Hague.

The Colorado Judicial Institute’s new board members are: Pamela A. Gagel, Malcolm Harding, and James E. Scarboro. New board officers are: Richard L. Gabriel, Elinor Greenberg, Gale T. Miller, Leslie A. Patten, and Lance Tanaka.


Gilbert Román was appointed by Gov. Bill Owens to the Colorado Court of Appeals, replacing retired Judge Henry E. Nieto.

Guadalupe J. Sisneros, with Snell & Wilmer, has been named president-elect of the Colorado Hispanic Bar Association.

David & Chuck Turner
David Turner
, son of CBA/DBA Executive Director Chuck Turner, has joined the ranks of the legal profession. David has taken a position as a Deputy Public Defender in the Castle Rock office of the 18th Judicial District. Chuck reports that David logged more court time in his first week than his dad has in over 30 years.

Congratulations to these attorneys who were included in the "Best of the Bar" awards by the Denver Business Journal. The Lifetime Achievement Award went to David C. Little of the law firm Montgomery Little & McGrew. Other winners: Elections, Campaigns & Political, Mark Grueskin of Isaacson Rosenbaum; Immigration, Ken Stern of Stern & Elkind; International Trade & Finance, Edward White of Moye Giles; Media & Communication, Thomas B. Kelley of Faegre & Benson; Medical Malpractice/Plaintiff, James Leventhal of Leventhal Brown & Puga; Personal Injury Litigation/ Defense, Franklin D. Patterson of Patterson Nuss & Seymour; Personal Injury Litigation/Plaintiff, Murray Ogborn of Ogborn Summerlin & Ogborn;
Pro Bono Attorney of the Year, Hugh Gottschalk of Wheeler Trigg Kennedy; Public Finance/Bond Counsel, Dee Wisor, Sherman & Howard; and Securities, Gordon "Skip" Netzorg of Netzorg McKeever Koclanes & Bernhardt. See the June 10–16 issue of the Journal for a list of finalists and stories on the winners. Our thanks to the Denver Business Journal for putting on such a great event honoring the Best of the Bar. (Photos on page 23.)


While promoting the Pueblo Reunion, a RMN column lauded the merits of Les Ward, saying "Ward is good stock."

Anne Castle, attorney with Holland & Hart, was featured in the Rocky’s "Corporate moms" feature article.

When Deep Throat was revealed, Denver attorneys spoke out. Jay Horowitz and James Prochnow were both quoted in the RMN, saying W. Mark Felt didn’t do the right thing by leaking information to reporters.

Former District Attorney Bill Ritter was in both papers for being the first Democrat to throw his hat in the ring for the Governor’s office.

The Denver Business Journal’s "Focus on the Law" section highlighted elder law issues, including an article on Senior Law Day, which is sponsored in part by the CBA. Attorneys quoted in the article were Valerie Corzine, Carl Glatstein, Jennifer Gormley and Peter Komlos-Hrobsky. Phil Bledsoe wrote an editorial on arbitration for the issue.


Former DBA President and water lawyer Joe Dischinger was quoted in a Post editorial on the rights of boaters and those of property owners.

Barbara Weil Laff, who specializes in intellectual property and copyright law, was quoted in a RMN story about Ward Churchill.

Tax attorney Joseph Thibodeau was part of a RMN feature article about busy professionals who fly their own planes.

Mike Gonser’s Franklin Street garden was featured in the Rocky’s "Home Front" section.

Skip Netzorg, president of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association, defended the legal system in his opinion in the DBJ, "Hard facts, data just don’t support tort reform."

Lee Reichert wrote an article for the Rocky entitled "And justice(s) for all — Businesses should weigh in on who makes it to U.S. Supreme Court."

District Court Judge Phil Figa was mentioned in an Intermountain Jewish News article about Yiddish and the law. Writes author Hillel Goldberg: "Thanks to Phillip S. Figa … I know that ‘chutzpah’ … has appeared in 112 reported court cases."

Colorado Supreme Court Justice Rebecca Love Kourlis wrote a letter to the editor of the Denver Herald-Dispatch: "We owe it to each other to respond to our jury summons, and to value jury duty as the honored right that it is."

Law Week Colorado highlighted Judge John P. Leopold’s recent jury service. "I will confess, I had some trouble when there was an objection made. I had to bite my tongue not to rule on it. …"


Senn Visciano Kirschenbaum Merrick is pleased to announce that Joel Rosenstein and Laura Redstone have become shareholders in the firm; Donald C. Sisson and Reid J. Elkus have joined the litigation department as associates; and Jeanette Wotkyns has joined the transactional department Of Counsel.

Isao "Kami" Kamitani has joined Rothgerber Johnson & Lyons as the firm’s General Manager—International Business Solutions.

Featherstone DeSisto announces that Jayme N. Moss has become an associate of the firm.

Mark Nierenberg and Jonathan M. Abramson have joined Kissinger & Fellman as associates.

Holland & Hart announces the additions of Henry "Buzz" C. Cleveland III, Barbara L. Crawford and Taylor T. Pollock in the health care practice, and the return of Hamid Khan as a litigation associate.

Marla L. Lien is the Regional Transportation District’s new General Counsel.

Denver has a new law firm with the opening of Peck, Shaffer & Williams. Mary Groves, formerly of Holme Roberts & Owen, joined as a partner.

Jaudon & Avery is pleased to announce that Karen M. Kwon, former Law Clerk to the Honorable Joseph E. Meyer II, has joined the firm as an associate.
Brody Leaffer

Faegre & Benson announces that Karen Leaffer has joined in its nonprofit and health law group and Karen L. Brody is Special Counsel in the litigation group.


Gerald D. Pratt has joined McConaughy & Sarkissian as Of Counsel, continuing his practice in the areas of general insurance defense and criminal defense.

Docket Committee member Marshall Snider has retired after 22 years as an administrative law judge at Colorado’s Office of Administrative Courts. Like any good retired judge,
he is making himself available as an arbitrator, mediator, fact-finder and provider of other neutral services
in labor, commercial, employment, insurance or any other type of case. Marshall can be reached at (303) 885-6659, or by e-mail at

Tiemeier & Hensen congratulates Robin Bain Earley on being named associate attorney.

Zupkus & Angell has added four new associates in the area of insurance defense practice: Natalie Lucas, Michael Knauf, Suzanne Naftali and Melissa Cikara.

Jon F. Sands, Brad Ramming, and Kimberle E. O’Brien have joined Fisher, Sweetbaum & Levin.

Bernard A. Poskus and Shari Caton have joined Sagrillo Hammond & Dineen. The new firm name is Sagrillo Hammond Dineen & Poskus.

Schafer Thomas is pleased to announce J. Adam Barker as a new associate.


Adam Lindquist Scoville has joined RE/MAX International as Corporate Counsel for trademark

Amanda M. Darby has joined Rentech, Inc. as General Counsel.

Emily V. Pastorius has joined Littler Mendelson’s Denver office as an associate.


Denver County Court Judge Jay Breese was seen displaying his collection, "Original Watercolors of the Rocky Mountain West" at the Art Students League of Denver Summer Art Market in June. Want a look? Go to

Docket Committee member Dick Ott had his original paintings on
display at Kaladi Bros. Coffee near DU for the month of June.


Joyce A. Bowman and Charles E. Liken have opened a practice at 240 S. Broadway, Suite 200.

Leslie Gartrell Toepfer opened her own law office on June 1, under the name Leslie Gartrell Toepfer, Attorney at Law, P.C. Contact her at: Waterpark II, 2530 S. Parker Rd., Suite 204, Aurora, CO 80014; (303) 369-2245;


According to a Robert Half Legal survey of attorneys across the nation, 93 percent of lawyers polled said they would not establish a law firm even if they had the necessary capital.


Lionel Dunievitz died on May 1 after a long battle with Multiple Sclerosis. He was 69.

Stephen A. Hellerstein, a Denver attorney active in banking legislation and known for his client mediation skills, died on May 8 at the age of 71.

Robert S. Zinn, formerly with Davis Graham & Stubbs and Jones International, died June 8 at the age of 68. Glenn Jones, head of Jones International said: "He could chisel through the granite and fold everything together. He was the best lawyer I ever knew."

Ray Johnson, "known as an ethical lawyer … and a dad who took his sons to a homeless shelter on the holidays where they helped serve meals to the poor," died on June 11 at the age of 82.

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