The Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System at the University of Denver announced Thursday that Rebecca Love Kourlis will retire from the role of executive director in September after spending 13 years with the organization.
The chancellor of the University of Denver, Rebecca Chopp, and the executive committee of IAALS have opted to fill the role with Scott Bales, who recently announced he will step down as chief justice of the Arizona Supreme Court. Bales has spent his career in efforts to improve and reform the courts, the legal profession and the judiciary.
“Because of Becky’s single-minded commitment to rebuilding justice in our country, IAALS has already made an indelible mark on the way the system must change. Her leadership on this work, so critical to our democracy, has made real change today and illuminated the path forward,” said retired Arizona Supreme Court Chief Justice Ruth McGregor, who serves on the IAALS board and chaired the committee tasked with finding Kourlis’ replacement. “We were fortunate to find someone in Scott ready to lead IAALS into the future with the same unwavering commitment and overwhelming experience.” Kourlis will officially leave her role as executive director Sept. 15, and Bales will take over the executive director position at that time.
“Building IAALS has been the most rewarding professional pursuit of my career,” Kourlis said in a press release. “We have spanned ideological divides, brought together diverse and divergent participants, used empirical data rather than conjecture and formulated real solutions to real problems within the American Legal System. Our partners are wonderful people across the country who hold dear our system of justice and who are committed to excellence within that system.”
Jackson Kelly’s Denver office team expanded with the addition of Gilbert Dickinson, Alexis Hailpern, Eric Holway and Michelle Prud’Homme. Dickinson, Holway and Prud’Homme bring decades of experience in civil litigation in medical malpractice and transportation, and Hailpern has experience in tax controversy, nonprofit formation and compliance and business law.
“We are thrilled to have Gilbert, Alexis, Eric and Michelle join our ranks and expand our litigation and tax teams,” said managing member Ellen Cappellanti.
Dickinson specializes in complex civil litigation including medical malpractice defense. He has completed over 80 jury trials. He is active at the local and national level in efforts to improve the civil litigation process and the civil jury trial. He received a law degree from the University of Colorado Law School and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Hailpern focuses her practice on tax controversy and business law. She also has experience with nonprofit formation and compliance. She represents businesses and individuals before the Internal Revenue Service in controversy cases including collections and audits/examinations on administrative and Tax Court levels. She received her law degree from Florida Coastal School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado. Holway has spent his entire legal career as a complex civil litigator, almost exclusively on behalf of individual health care professionals and facilities. He also represents health care providers in disciplinary actions brought against them through the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies. Holway has experience handling cases in professional negligence, insurance defense and subrogation, personal injury defense and premises liability. He received a law degree from the University of Dayton School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota.
Prud’Homme focuses her practice in the areas of insurance defense including premises liability, transportation, veterinary and medical, and hospital malpractice. In addition to civil litigation, she represents professionals in disciplinary actions before the Colorado Medical Board, the Board of Nursing and the State Board of Veterinary Medicine. She received a law degree from the University of Colorado Law School and a bachelor’s degree from Colorado College.
FisherBroyles announced that Thomas Osborne has joined the intellectual property practice group in the Denver office. Osborne primarily represents large and small businesses as well as technology transfer departments of universities. His practice includes portfolio management, patent preparation and prosecution, licensing and other IP related agreements, due diligence related to client sales and acquisitions, and assisting clients with managing IP litigation and other disputes. He was most recently a partner at Dinsmore & Shohl. He also previously was in practice at Jones Day and Dorsey & Whitney. He received a law degree from the University of Notre Dame and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Dayton.
Moye White announced Wednesday that Joseph Mark has joined the firm as an associate in the firm’s trial section. Mark represents clients in civil trials and mediation proceedings. Mark moved to Moye White from another Denver law firm. He previously clerked for Judge Terry Fox on the Colorado Court of Appeals. He received both his law degree and bachelor’s degree from the University of Denver.
Spencer Fane announced Wednesday that Erin Bustamante-Trinidad joined the firm’s Denver office as an associate in the employee benefits practice group. Her legal experience involves employee benefits work including fiduciary responsibilities, 401(k) and retirement plans and compliance. She also has experience in Department of Labor and IRS filings related to ERISA reporting.
Bustamante-Trinidad received a law degree from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. Prior to law school, she received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado Leeds School of Business and spent more than 10 years in the insurance industry.
The 4th Judicial District Nominating Commission has nominated three candidates for a district court judgeship created by the retirement of Judge Barbara Hughes, effective Feb. 15. Nominees Brien Cecil and Marcus Henson, both of Colorado Springs; and William Moller of Woodland Park were selected by the commission on March 1.
Under the Colorado Constitution, the governor has 15 days from March 4 to appoint one of the nominees as district court judge for the 4th Judicial District.
The 2nd Judicial District Nominating Commission has nominated three candidates for a district court judgeship created by the retirement of Judge Catherine Lemon, effective March 6. Nominees Joyce Akhahenda and Ericka Englert, both of Denver, and Eric Johnson of Thornton were selected by the commission on March 6.
Under the Colorado Constitution, the governor has 15 days from March 7 to appoint one of the nominees as district court judge for the 2nd Judicial District.
Comments regarding any of the above nominees may be sent via e-mail to the governor at [email protected]
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The American College of Trial Lawyers has inducted Carolyn Fairless, co-managing partner of Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell, as a fellow. Fairless delivered remarks on behalf of her induction class during a ceremony at the ACTL Annual Spring Meeting in La Quinta, California.
The ACTL is an invitation-only organization of trial attorneys dedicated to maintaining and improving the standards of trial practice, professionalism, ethics and the administration of justice.
“Carolyn’s relentless client representation and model leadership within the trial bar exemplify the qualities of legal excellence that the ACTL strives to cultivate, honor, and preserve,” said WTO firm chair Michael O’Donnell, who also serves as secretary of the ACTL.
With the addition of Fairless, nine WTO partners are now ACTL Fellows, including O’Donnell, Scott Barker, former ACTL Colorado state chair Hugh Gottschalk, Kevin Kuhn, Habib Nasrullah, Kurt Rozelsky, Jack Trigg and Malcolm Wheeler.
Throughout her career, Fairless has represented clients in complex commercial litigation and professional liability defense. Fairless is a 1998 alumna of the University of Colorado Law School, and she holds an undergraduate degree from Tulane University. Prior to entering law, Fairless worked as a computer scientist at IBM.