Definition of a "Young Lawyer" by CBA YLD standards are lawyers younger than 37 or who have been in practice less than five years.
Want to learn more about the CBA YLD? Come to an Executive Council meeting! We meet the third Wednesday of the month, 6 p.m., at the CBA, 1290 Broadway, Ste. 1700, Denver, CO 80203. Contact Heather Folker if you have new ideas or questions about upcoming events. Let us know what we can do to serve you better. We hope that you will join us!
Jim is an associate with Ogborn Mihm, LLP. He practices primarily in the areas of business litigation, personal injury, and legal malpractice. Previously, Jim worked for a renowned Denver litigation firm and clerked for the Hon. James S. Casebolt on the Colorado Court of Appeals. Jim graduated from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2014. During law school, he was a member of the National Trial Team, served as an Articles Editor for the Water Law Review, and advocated on behalf of clients in DU’s Environmental Law Clinic. He received his undergraduate degrees from the University of Colorado at Boulder. In his spare time, you will find Jim spending time with his wife, Becca, fly-fishing a mountain stream with his dog, Gus, or searching for his golf ball.
Kaela is a senior associate attorney at Griffiths Law PC, where she practices domestic relations litigation and drafts prenuptial agreements. A Colorado native, Kaela is a graduate of the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and was editor in chief of DU's Criminal Law Review. During and following law school, Kaela clerked for the Honorable Robert L. McGahey, Jr. in Denver District Court. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling the world with her trusty backpack and exploring the Denver brunch scene.
Mallory is an associate in the Denver office of Welborn Sullivan Meck & Tooley, P.C. where her practice focuses on probate, estate planning, and oil and gas title matters. In addition to serving on the Executive Council of the CBA Young Lawyers Division, Mallory serves as an At-Large Member of the CBA Executive Council. Mallory is a native Oklahoman and proud alumna of The University of Oklahoma who doesn't miss a chance to cheer on the Sooners, and in her free time she enjoys running, hiking, and exploring Colorado with her husband and their dog. She looks forward to giving back to the Colorado legal community as a member of the Executive Council and to connecting with other young lawyers around the state.
Robyn Clarke is an attorney Leventhal Puga Braley P.C. Robyn graduated from Stanford Law School with pro bono distinction, and then went on to clerk for the Honorable Jon D. Levy in the Federal District Court of Maine. During law school, Robyn was a member editor of the Stanford Law Review and a senior editor of the Stanford Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Journal. Robyn is a fourth generation Coloradoan, and she and her husband love spending their free time working out and exploring the mountains with their two very un-athletic dogs.
Shane O’Connor (Treasurer) | Denver
Shane is an associate at the Berg Hill Greenleaf Ruscitti, LLP in Boulder. He currently maintains a broad practice in commercial litigation. Shane graduated from the University of Colorado Law School in 2019. During law school, he was a member of the National Moot Court Team and participated in the Civil Practice Clinic, where he served clients in divorce, immigration, and social security disability proceedings. Shane is a typical Denver transplant, spending most of his spare time either hiking in the mountains or out on the golf course.
Maral is a conflicts and ethics attorney at Holland & Hart. Maral received her JD from Case Western University School of Law, where she was an executive editor of the school's Journal of Law and Medicine and a senator of the Student Bar Association. She returned to Colorado after her studies and is excited to help foster the legal community here. She enjoys hiking, camping, attending concerts, and traveling.
Kevin is the co-founder and managing partner of Cheney Galluzzi & Howard, LLC, which handles exclusively plaintiffs' personal injury cases. He has tried numerous cases to verdict including car crashes, breach of fiduciary duty claims, and even an attempted first-degree murder case. Kevin is a graduate of the University of Colorado Law School, where he was a member of the National Mock Trial and National Moot Court teams. While working in the Criminal Defense Clinic, Kevin successfully argued that a Boulder ordinance was unconstitutional, prompting the Boulder City Council to amend the law after it was struck down. Kevin sits on the Board and Legislative Committee for the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association. He is active in the community, regularly teaching classes to local high school students through Learn Your Rights in Colorado. He enjoys playing poker, going to Red Rocks, and being active in politics.
Spencer currently practices commercial transactions, mergers and acquisitions, and technology transfer negotiations at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP in their Denver office. Spencer works across multiple industries, including aerospace, industrial manufacturing, healthcare, e-commerce, hospitality, and energy and natural resources and works with clients from start-up to Fortune-50 size. Spencer graduated from the University of Colorado Law School in 2016 and Tufts University in 2013. In his free time, Spencer enjoys hiking, snowshoeing, and world travel.
Thomas is an antitrust attorney with Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith in Denver. A native Coloradan, Thomas completed his undergraduate degree in Economics at Colorado State University after competing in collegiate hockey, football, and track. Thomas went on to earn his law degree at the University of Denver, where he served as Senior Editor for the Race to the Bottom. Thomas’s parents, Greg and Tracey, still live in Northern Colorado while his younger brother, Ben, is completing a degree of his own at CSU. Outside of the office, Thomas enjoys golfing, cooking, photography, and planning his next trip abroad. Thomas also spends his time volunteering with the Rocky Mountain Micro Finance Institute and Friends of Nathan Yip. Thomas further enjoys putting together teams to explore the potential for enhanced and new horizons for our community.
Dan St. John | Fort Collins
Dan is an associate attorney at Johnson Muffly & Dauster, PC in Fort Collins, Colorado. He practices real estate law, with an focus on litigation, community association law, and landlord-tenant law. Prior to joining the Executive Council, Dan was the president of the Larimer County Bar Association Young Lawyers Divisionand is currently on the Larimer County Bar Association's executive council. He is also a member of The Law Club, an organization dedicated to song, satire, and legal ethics. As a practitioner in greater Colorado, Dan's focus on the Executive Council will be on connecting the CBA YLD to lawyers outside the Denver metro area. Dan eagerly awaits the first flakes of snow to hearken in ski season each year. But since he can't ski year-round, he enjoys disc golfing and telling people that he fly fishes. If you have an idea for how the CBA can better serve young lawyers outside of the Denver metro area, please let him know!
Stephanie Dankel | Denver
Stephanie E. Dankel is an associate attorney at Cooper Ramp Cage Bucar Lewis, LLC. As a family law attorney, Stephanie is passionate about finding creative solutions and aiding families through the legal process. In 2022, Stephanie was selected as a Super Lawyers Rising Star. Stephanie has been on the CBA YLD Executive Counsel since 2020, and she volunteers with Metro Volunteer Lawyers. Stephanie and her husband Ben are Denver County foster parents. In their spare time Stephanie and Ben enjoy vegetable gardening, caring for their backyard chickens, skiing, hiking, and travelling.
Eliza Steinberg is a Shareholder at Griffiths Law PC, where she practices family law. Eliza received her JD from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. She was recognized as an "Up and Coming Lawyer" by Law Week Colorado in 2019 and named to the Super Lawyers Rising Stars list every year since 2020. Eliza is a professional mentor at the Sturm College of Law and volunteers her time with several non-profit organizations including the Colorado Judicial Institute and ALIGHT. In her free time, she enjoys travelling and spending time with her husband and son in the Colorado outdoors. Eliza has summited around 30 of Colorado's 14ers with more summits to come.
Jared Ertle is an associate in the Corporate Finance Division of Stinson LLP, where he advises clients on a broad range of M&A, private equity, and capital formation matters. Prior to joining Stinson, Jared served as vice president and assistant general counsel for an NYSE-listed bank holding company, where he provided legal guidance on matters ranging from corporate governance and securities, to banking regulations and lending. Jared proudly serves as counsel on a pro bono basis to the Miracle League of Metro Denver, a nonprofit organization that provides children and adults who are living with various mental or physical challenges an opportunity to play baseball as a team member in an organized league. In his spare time, Jared enjoys a good beer on a sun-drenched patio or getting in a round of golf.
Karen Blau is an associate attorney at Parker Lipman LLP. She works on a variety of civil cases including personal injury, sexual assault, premises liability, wrongful death and medical malpractice. Prior to joining Parker Lipman LLP, Karen clerked at the Second Judicial District Court for the Honorable Edward Bronfin. During her time at the court she had the opportunity to clerk in the civil, criminal, and domestic rotations.
Born and raised in California, at the age of seventeen Karen moved to Israel to enlist in the Israel Defense Force. There she served for two years reaching the rank of sergeant in the Field Artillery Division. She was the youngest ranked and only female to receive the 61StAnnual Israel Independence Day Grant for her service. Upon discharge from the military, Karen returned to California where she attended the University of California, Berkeley and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. Immediately thereafter, she continued to law school at University of California, Hastings College of the Law. After law school, Karen seized the wonderful opportunity to clerk in the great state of Colorado. Upon her arrival, she quickly felt at home. During her free time Karen enjoys traveling, scuba diving, skiing, and playing with her dog, Chick Hen.
Raquel Hernandez | Colorado Springs
Raquel V. Hernandez is an compassionate advocate who enjoys helping families navigate our complex judicial system. Raquel brings insight from behind the bench with her combined experience of a year and three months of being a law clerk. In the 19th Judicial District, Weld County, Raquel clerked for two judges and a magistrate, all of whom had domestic relations dockets. In her capacity as a law clerk, Raquel provided research memorandums and composed the first drafts of the Court’s orders, amongst other responsibilities. In the 4th Judicial District, El Paso County, as a law student, Raquel participated in the Court’s summer law clerk program; where she clerked for a judge with a mixed docket of criminal and domestic. In addition to her law clerk experience, Raquel has further insight in the Dependency and Neglect field, from when she interned, as a law student, for the Florida Department of Children and Family, Children’s Legal Services.
Raquel attended undergraduate school at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, earning a BA in History. For law school, Raquel attended Florida Coastal School of Law, receiving a certificate in Family Law studies and a Pro Bono certificate.
In her free time, Raquel enjoys hiking and camping in the mountains, and spending time with her friends, family, and dog. Raquel is also one of the At-Large Trustees of the El Paso County Bar Association. Additionally, Raquel gives back to the local community through her pro bono work via the Justice Center of the El Paso County Bar Association and clinics held at the courthouse.
A.J. is an Associate at Holland & Hart LLP, in their Denver office. A young “Dirt Lawyer,” A.J. assists clients through all aspects of commercial real estate transactions, ranging from the acquisition of land for development, navigating land use issues, securing funding in loan and finance transactions, drafting and negotiating leases from both the tenant and landlord perspective, and disposition of real estate assets. A.J. received a B.A. in Political Science and English with a certificate in Journalism from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles and a J.D. from the University of Notre Dame. In his free time, A.J. enjoys partaking in outdoor activities including skiing/snowboarding, hiking, river floating, golfing, running, and a good patio beer. Due to growing up in Colorado, A.J. is an avid Broncos, Rockies, Nuggets, and Avalanche fan. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Georgina Melbye is partner at Kalamaya | Goscha which specializes in Family Law, Criminal Defense, and Personal Injury. She works primarily from the Aspen Office and loves all that mountain life has to offer. She is thrilled to join the Young Lawyers Division board and looks forward to connecting and working with young lawyers across Colorado.
Sean Rooney is an associate attorney at Whitham Law Group in Grand Junction, Colorado. Sean assists clients with family law issues. Originally from Michigan, Sean earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Adrian College in 2014. In May of 2020, Sean graduated from the University of Wyoming College of Law. Outside of work, Sean enjoys exploring Colorado with his wife, Sarah, spending time with family, and watching sports.
Jessica Isabel Cordero is a first-generation Hispanic legal graduate from the University of Denver - Sturm College of Law and a premier Millennial Crisis Coach. After building a successful practice at an international law firm, she discovered her passion for helping professionals navigate moral and ethical challenges, manage stress, and overcome communication barriers to build better and more sustainable practices. She also utilizes her expertise to help students at her alma mater as a Career Consultant. Lastly, she is a Board Member at the Colorado Hispanic Bar Association Foundation and a strong advocate for C-PTSD and LGBTQ+ communities.
Logan DeSouza is an associate in the Boulder office of Koenig, Oelsner, Taylor, Schoenfeld & Gaddis PC. Logan's practice focuses on business transactions and corporate law, including mergers and acquisitions, equity investments, structuring joint ventures and partnerships, venture financings, and corporate governance matters. Logan previously practiced in M&A group in the New York City office of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP and spent time as a secondee at Apollo Global Management, Inc. focusing on leveraged buyouts. Logan is a graduate of Duke University School of Law. Although still somewhat new to Colorado, Logan greatly enjoys the outdoor pursuits offered within his proverbial "backyard" including trail running, rock climbing and snowboarding.
Chelsea is a staff attorney with the Colorado General Assembly, Office of Legislative Legal Services. Chelsea received her JD from Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law, where she served as an executive editor of the Indiana Health Law Review, the vice president of the Student Bar Association, and an associate justice on the school's Moot Court Board. After practicing law in Indiana for three years, Chelsea moved to Colorado where she advises Colorado state legislators and state agencies on legal matters ranging from Medicaid and human services, to criminal justice and education. In her free time, Chelsea enjoys traveling internationally, hiking, going to concerts, and running.
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