Fennemore Merges With Wendel Rosen, Hall Estill, Wilson Sonsini and DGS Add Attorneys

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Law Firm Updates

Hall Estill, a national law firm with an office in Denver, announced the election of Stephen Ray as its new president and managing partner June 13. Ray, filling the vacancy created by previous managing partner Mike Cook’s retirement, will be the fifth managing partner in the firm’s history. Additionally, Sarah Hansel and Steve Soulé joined Hall Estill’s executive committees and Sarah Miller, Moira Watson and Ken Williams were elected to Hall Estill’s board of directors.

On June 14, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati announced the arrival of corporate partner Brent Fassett to its Boulder office. Fassett, a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, is the first lateral partner to join the office since its opening in February. He represents innovative life sciences and medical technology clients, focusing his practice on venture capital financings, public and private M&A transactions, initial public offerings and licensing and commercial agreements. 

Fennemore, a national firm with a Denver office, announced June 14 it is continuing to expand westward, combining with Wendel Rosen LLP –  one of the oldest and largest business law firms in the San Francisco Bay area. From Wendel, 56 attorneys and 45 allied legal professionals will join Fennemore, bringing the firm’s total roster to 250 attorneys across the Western United States, effective July 1. 

On June 15, Merchant & Gould, a national law firm with a Denver office, announced the launch of a business consulting group: the M&G Integrator Program. The program offers product and service companies a new way to protect their brands with its InnovaShield Brand Protection Index.

On June 16, Davis Graham & Stubbs welcomed Madeline Smart as an associate to the firm’s trial group. Smart’s practice includes complex commercial litigation, internal and government investigations, and bankruptcy proceedings. Prior to joining DGS, Smart worked as a litigation associate in the Dallas office of an American international law firm.

Judiciary 

The Second Judicial District Nominating Commission has selected eight candidates for three district court judgeships, created by the retirements of Chief Judge Michael Martinez, Judge Michael Vallejos and Judge Edward Bronfin. The vacancies will be effective Sept. 1, July 30 and Jan 10, 2023, respectively. Nominees Michael Angel, Mark Bailey, Arnold Beckman, Heidi Kutcher, Andrew Luxen, Anita Schutte and Demetria Trujillo, all of Denver, and Emily Fleischmann of Broomfield were selected by the commission June 13.

On June 13, the Seventh Judicial District Nominating Commission selected three nominees for a Montrose county court vacancy created by the resignation of Judge Bennett Morris: Rachel Allen and Kurt Beckenhauer, of Montrose, and Laura Harvell of Olathe. 

The 11th Judicial District Nominating Commission announced six candidates for two district court judgeships created by the resignation of Judge Ramsey Lama and Judge Stephen Groome. The nominee group includes Donald Cutler of Howard, Amanda Hunter of Westcliffe and Salida, Jeffrey Lindsey of Canon City, Riley Selleck of Westcliffe and Salida, Kaitlin Turner of Canon City and Jason Young of Littleton and Fairplay. 

The Colorado Judicial Institute announced the election of Kelley Duke to its board of directors. Duke, Ireland Stapleton’s director of litigation, focuses on complex litigation matters and provides general counsel to clients in various industries including oil and gas, transportation, supply chain management banking, marketing, public relations, packaging and distribution and the public sector.

On June 15, the 16th Judicial District Nominating Commission announced plans to meet via videoconference July 14 to interview and select nominees to fill a county judge vacancy in Bent County. The opening will be created by Judge Samuel Vigil’s appointment to the District Court July 2. Applications must be received by June 28 at 4 p.m. and nominations by 4 p.m. June 21. 

The 19th Judicial District  Nominating Commission will meet Aug. 1 and Aug. 12 at the Weld County Courthouse to interview and select nominees for county judge and district judge for Weld County. The county judge vacancy will be created by the retirement of Judge Charles Unfug on Jan. 10, 2023. The district judge vacancy will be created by the retirement of Judge James Hartmann on Oct. 1. Applications for county judge need to be submitted by 4 p.m. July 8 and applications for the district judge position must be emailed no later than 4 p.m. July 12. 

The Second Judicial District Nominating Commission will meet Aug. 2 at the Denver City and County Building to interview and select nominees for district judge for Denver County. The vacancies will be created by the retirements of Judge Brian Whitney and Judge Ross Buchanan. The vacancies will occur Oct. 5 and Jan 10, 2023, respectively. Applications are due by 4 p.m. July 6.

The Ninth Judicial District Nominating Commission will meet at the Garfield County Courthouse on Aug. 8 to interview and select nominees for county judge for Garfield County. The vacancy will be created by the retirement of Judge Paul Metzger on Oct. 1. Applications are due 4 p.m. June 28.

Kudos

Ballad Spahr LLP celebrates the 40th anniversary of its Denver office this month. The celebration is scheduled to take place Wednesday, June 29 in the Sturm Grand Pavilion. 

Colorado commercial law firm Ireland Stapleton Pryor & Pascoe PC announced June 16 it was recognized by Chambers USA as a top litigation firm in the state. Attorneys Rebecca Almon, James Benjamin and K.C. Groves were ranked individually in their respective fields.

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