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TCL > September 2002 Issue > Bar News

September 2002       Vol. 31, No. 9       Page  4
Bar News

Bar News
by Lindsay Packard


Wildfire Hotline: On June 24, 2002, the Colorado Bar Association ("CBA") opened to the public a telephone "hotline" to help Coloradans affected by wildfires in the state. The hotline is co-sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency ("FEMA") and the CBA Young Lawyers Division ("CBA/ YLD"). More than 100 Colorado lawyers volunteered to answer calls and give legal information. Fire victims can call the hotline number—(800) 467-0372—with fire-related questions. For more information or to volunteer to respond to callers, please contact Karen Bries at or Lindsay Packard at The CBA knows that many of its members have been directly affected by this disaster and extends best wishes to them.

President’s Visit: On July 12, 2002, CBA President John Moye traveled to Montrose for the first of seven regional bar visits he will be making during his tenure as president. More than fifty members from the Four Corners, Southwestern, Seventh Judicial District, Delta, and Mesa Bar Associations were in attendance for the free, three-credit CLE program and the following reception with Moye, local bar officers, and CBA staff members. To learn about future visits, contact Jo Ann Viola Salazar by phone: (800) 332-6736 or (303) 824-5210, or e-mail:

CBA President John Moye speaks to attendees at the Montrose bar visit in July.

Karl Ranous Award: Rufus Wilderson was recently awarded the Karl Ranous Award for outstanding professionalism in Gunnison County. Nominations were open to any attorney who practices in Gunnison County; a committee composed of three attorneys and a district judge selected Wilderson. The award was presented at an annual dinner on May 18, 2002, by Judge Steve Patrick. Also awarded at the dinner was the Northwest Colorado Legal Services Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award. This year, the award went to Clay Miller for his outstanding pro bono services.

Judge Steve Patrick (l) presents Karl Ranous Award to Rufus Wilderson at annual dinner in Gunnison.

Did You Know? The first annual meeting of the CBA was held in Colorado Springs on July 6 and 7, 1898. CBA Historian David L. Erickson reports that at the meeting, a Code of Ethics previously adopted by the Alabama Bar Association was adopted by the Colorado Bar. Among its fifty-five sections was the following provision:

47. Men, as a rule, over-estimate rather than under-value the worth of their services, and attorneys in fixing their fees should avoid charges which unduly magnify the value of their advice and services, as well as those which practically belittle them. A client’s ability to pay can never justify a charge for more than the service is worth; though his poverty may require a less charge in many instances, and some times none at all.


The Real Estate Section, along with CBA-CLE, hosted the 20th Annual Real Estate Symposium in Steamboat Springs on July 17-20, 2002. Approximately 400 real estate lawyers and other members of the legal community attended the symposium.

During their recent annual awards luncheon at the Hyatt Regency, the Colorado Lawyer’s Committee ("CLC") recognized Steven M. Kaufmann as CLC’s "Individual of the Year." Kaufmann is a member of the CLC Executive Committee and also on the board of directors. He co-chairs the Education Task Force, which has researched education finance and Colorado’s CSAP tests. Kaufmann has practiced with the Denver law firm of Morrison & Foerster since 1985.


After taking the summer off, the Denver Bar Association’s ("DBA") "Tuesdays at the Bar" programs are back beginning September 3, 2002. Every Tuesday at noon, the DBA offers useful, timely, and interesting seminars for one CLE credit. These hour-long sessions are at 1900 Grant St., Third Floor, and include lunch. Among the fall programs are: "Getting Involved in the Legislative/Elective Process"; "Scanning 101"; "File Retention"; "Word Forms"; and "Negotiating Law Office Leases." Keep an eye out for a list of programs specifically in November, which is being featured as "All Ethics Month." To reserve your spot, contact Tessa Kahn by e-mail at or call (303) 824-5371.

Surf on over to to see the new, redesigned DBA website (home page shown below). The look is new, but the DBA site still has all of the great information previously offered. Here are just a few things available on the DBA website: member benefits, DBA committees, young lawyer events and programs, The Docket, information on Metro Volunteer Lawyers and the Family Law court program, a staff directory, an up-to-date calendar, and much more! Pay a visit today!


The following CLE programs will take place in September. For complete information about these or other CBA-CLE programs or publications, please contact CBA-CLE at (303) 860-0608 or toll free at (888) 860-2531. Also, a "CBA-CLE Planning Guide" is printed in each issue of The Colorado Lawyer. Link to more information about CBA-CLE seminars, publications, home study, and more from the CBA website:

• September 11: Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Basics, CBA-CLE Classroom, Denver

• September 12: Trial Issues in Depth (a.m.); Colorado UPIA Workshop (p.m.), CBA-CLE Classroom, Denver

• September 13: Advancing in the Legal Profession: Survival Skills & Strategies for Attorneys, CBA-CLE Classroom, Denver

• September 17-November 19, 2002 (Tuesday evenings): Willis Carpenter’s ten-week Real Estate Practice Course, CBA-CLE Classroom, Denver

• September 17: Trust Drafting Series: Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts (a.m.), CBA-CLE Classroom, Denver

• September 20: Basics of Sales and Acquisitions of Real Estate, CBA-CLE Classroom, Denver

• September 27-29: Solo/Small Firm Conference, Breckenridge


Bar News Highlight . . .

Starting this month, Bar News is expanding to include a third page that will feature vignettes about lawyers’ activities outside the practice of law. If you or someone you know has an interesting avocation, story, or tall tale, please contact Lindsay Packard at: We still want your news and pictures of Bar events, awards, and activities, so keep them coming as well!



The Wild World of Sporting Attorneys:
Jerry Donley Jumps His Way to Fame

by Jack Donley
Kane, Donley & Johnson, Colorado Springs


Pools, gardens, patios, and flowers are commonplace in the backyards of Coloradans. Pole-vault pits are not. For Jerry Donley, a 72-year-old Colorado Springs attorney—who, over the last thirty years, has won seven world masters pole-vault championships and still holds several national and world track and field records—a pole-vault pit fits right in with his backyard décor.

Jerry pole-vaulted in high school with a bamboo pole and a sawdust landing pit. In 1950, he vaulted 13´-3/4´´ with a metal pole, setting a Beloit College record that remained the record for almost fifty years.

Law school, the military, a legal career, and a growing family soon took precedence over pole vaulting. Jerry hadn’t looked at a pole for years until the night he came home from work to find his three boys in the backyard "pole-vaulting" with sticks. He quickly gave up trying to tell them how to vault and started showing them. At the age of 40, Jerry had rediscovered his passion for track and field.

After his first "Masters Meet" (for those over age 40), Jerry realized he could be competitive—very competitive. Before long, he was winning every competition he attended. After his first world track meet, he was considered "the guy to beat."


Since then, Jerry has traveled throughout the United States and the world, competing in meets, breaking records, and officiating meets. Stories of trying to get his fourteen-foot pole- vault pole into an airplane, a taxicab, or up the stairs of a hotel provide great cocktail hour entertainment!

Dot, Jerry’s wife of forty-seven years, commented more than a few times that she could not leave Colorado Springs without a pole. She was by his side at meet after meet, cheering, organizing, and officiating. Jerry lost his wife to a brain tumor.

Jerry co-founded a law firm and practiced law with the same partner, HayDen Kane, for more than forty-five years. His current partners include one of his sons and two of HayDen’s sons. Lawyers in the firm of Kane, Donley & Johnson enjoy their chosen careers and understand well the need for a balance of church, family, work, and of course, regular exercise.

A younger Jerry Donley in action at a track meet.

When Jerry attended the 2001 World Masters Track Meet in Melbourne, Australia, he noticed a sixty-five-year-old track star that he had known from his work with U.S.A. Masters Track & Field ("USAT&F"). Although he has not yet admitted it, what probably got his attention was her record-crushing, gold medal performance in the seven-event Heptathlon. The two recently married and now travel the world together, carrying not only a pole, but two sets of track shoes, a shot put, and a javelin.

Although winning has been a habit, Jerry has been a leader as well. He literally changed the face of track and field sports for the 40+ age group. He was chairman of the USAT&F for the U.S. Athletics Conference ("U.S.A.C.") from 1982 to 1989. He has officiated and run hundreds of track meets up and down the Front Range. He has even incorporated his own pole-vault club, Above the Bar, Inc., which uses its funds to hold track meets and assist young vaulters.

Jerry’s list of awards is endless; however, a few of those awards illustrate his career well. They include: the Beloit College Athletic Hall of Honor, USAT&F Athlete of the Year, and U.S.A.C./ USAT&F Administrator of the Year. There is even an award presented at the Rocky Mountain Games that is named the Jerry Donley Pole Vault Award and is given to the vaulter with the highest age-rated vault.

Jerry’s son, Jack, recently purchased the house he grew up in and where his father taught him and his brothers the fine points of pole-vaulting. Written into the real estate contract when Jack bought the house is the condition to maintain the backyard pole-vault pit. To this day, Jerry Donley trains and assists young men and women in that very same pit where he rediscovered his own passion for the sport of pole vaulting!

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