Making partner is one of the top accomplishments in the life of a lawyer. It is seen as the culmination of several years of hard work and reaching a point of stability and financial success.
While many reports acknowledge that the partner tier is not always seen by young attorneys as the milestone it once was, this year’s announcements show there isn’t much slowdown at Denver’s law firms.
Denver’s lawyer community saw 70 attorneys promoted to partner at 25 firms at the turn of the New Year. We congratulate all of the attorneys who reached the career milestone.
The list on the following pages acknowledges each of the attorneys who were recently promoted with their practice area and a brief bio.
And as a note on navigating our list, we sort attorneys by law firm first and then by name. The idea is to provide a snapshot look at how many attorneys are making the partner tier this year at each firm.
Law Week compiled the list based on announcements received from law firms. The list only features the attorneys practicing in Colorado and does not distinguish between equity partners and non-equity partners.
Aubyn Krulish- Armstrong Teasdale
Practice: Corporate, Mergers & Acquisitions
In addition to being named partner, Krulish was also recently named managing attorney of the firm’s Denver office. She provides counsel on business issues for clients of all sizes and primarily focuses on mergers and acquisitions, technology transactions, financings, and complex commercial contracts.
Douglas Marsh- Armstrong Teasdale
Marsh’s litigation practice focuses on complex commercial litigation and appeals. As a special assistant state’s attorney in the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in Illinois and through federal and state judicial clerkships, Doug gained experience about trial preparation and procedure, case administration and legal research.
William Ojile- Armstrong Teasdale
Practice: Alternative Dispute Resolution, Governance & Compliance, Litigation
Ojile has 15 years of experience as a general counsel for both public and private companies, advises clients on and represents them in disputes related to sophisticated legal, regulatory and business issues. He also serves as an arbitrator on the AAA commercial arbitration panel.
Matthew Arentsen- Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
A member of the firm’s litigation department, Arentsen focuses on consumer law compliance and defense‚ with an emphasis on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and investigations by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and state attorneys general. He defends companies in class actions involving other consumer protection laws, including the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and state unfair and deceptive acts and practices statutes.
Anna-Liisa Mullis- Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
Practicing in the firm’s litigation department, Mullis specializes in serving clients in the health care industry and analyzes and resolves litigation challenges that come with working in that industry. She represents health care organizations and professionals in matters before trial and appellate courts, as well as in private arbitration, and strategizes with clients to resolve complex disputes.
Charles Smith – Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
Practice: Real Estate, State and Local Legislation & Policy
Smith is a member of the firm’s real estate department and has a background in business and politics. His practice expertise around commercial real estate includes acquisitions, dispositions, leasing, land use and public-private-partnerships for large-scale development, redevelopment, infill, mixed-use, planned community and transit-oriented projects.
Kevin Walsh- Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
Practice: Construction, Litigation
Walsh’s practice is in the firm’s litigation department where he represents clients in the construction and real estate industries. In his construction law and commercial litigation practice, he provides contractors, design professionals, developers and governmental entities with legal services including contract drafting and negotiation; dispute avoidance and de-escalation; mediation, litigation and arbitration; compliance guidance; and appeals.
Jacob Whitted – Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
Practice: Land Use, Real Estate
A member of the firm’s real estate department, Whitted’s local and national real estate practice focuses on the development, acquisition, financing, leasing and disposition of a real estate asset classes including multifamily apartment and condominium developments, senior living facilities, mixed-use, office and retail projects, and commercial and industrial properties and portfolios.
Tim Hanson- BryanCave Leighton Paisner
Practice: M&A and Corporate Finance, Corporate
Hanson concentrates his practice on mergers and acquisitions, including private equity and strategic transactions, commercial transactions, corporate law matters and executive and equity compensation issues. He has experience advising private equity funds and public and private corporations regarding their M&A and commercial transactions, as well as advising on day-to-day corporate and compensation issues.
Jacob Burg- Burg Simpson
Practice: Personal Injury Litigation
Burg obtained his law degree from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. He is currently a member of the Craig Hospital PUSH event planning committee and is also a member of the Colorado Bar Association Legal Fee Arbitration Committee. He previously served as a legal intern for Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper’s Office of Legal Counsel.
Angela McGraw- Burg Simpson
Practice: Personal Injury
McGraw focuses on communication with clients in her personal injury cases — what might otherwise be an intimidating process. In her practice, she often helps children with brain injuries or other significant injuries that result in disabilities and often fights for increased assistance and accommodations for children with IEPs.
Melissa Barber- Caplan and Earnest
Practice: Education Law
Barber practices in Caplan & Earnest’s education law section, where she counsels clients on a legal and policy compliance matters, including special education, constitutional issues and discipline among others. She previously spent 12 years as general counsel for the Boulder Valley School District and is a board member at the National School Boards Association’s Council of School Attorneys and a former board chair of the Colorado Council of School Board Attorneys.
Terry Cipoletti- Caplan and Earnest
Practice: Health Care
Cipoletti’s health care practice is focused on civil litigation and regulatory law. He has represented health care entities including providers, hospitals, nonprofit clinics, dental companies, medical device and pharmaceutical companies, mental health and behavioral health organizations, and senior care, skilled nursing and long-term care entities.
William Garcia- Coan Payton & Payne
Practice: Commercial Real Estate, Business Law
Garcia’s legal practice focuses on commercial real estate and business law including purchase and sale transactions, land use and development planning matters, as well as general business and corporate transactions, probate litigation and estate planning matters. He has previously held a number of commissioner seats within Weld County’s government, and, as a Weld County commissioner, drafted, reviewed and participated in the enactment of numerous provisions of the Weld County Code.
Jennifer Allen- Davis Graham & Stubbs
Commercial Litigation, Class Action Defense
Allen specializes in complex commercial cases, insurance, and class action defense. She serves on the Board of Governors of the Colorado Bar Association, the Public Affairs Council for the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce and the Executive Committee for the Colorado Pledge to Diversity. She is a member of the 2019 Colorado General Counsel Mentor Program, which connects lawyers with Denver-area in-house counsel.
Tess Hand-Bender- Davis Graham & Stubbs
Practice: Commercial Litigation, Appeals
Tess Hand-Bender focuses her practice on complex commercial litigation, white collar defense, internal investigations and trial. She has represented clients at all stages of litigation and confidential arbitration, from initiation of proceedings through trial and appeal. Prior to entering private practice, Ms. Hand-Bender clerked for Judge Philip A. Brimmer of the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado and Judge Neil M. Gorsuch of the Tenth Circuit Court.
Sterling LeBoeuf- Davis Graham & Stubbs
Practice: Labor & Employment Counseling, Litigation
LeBoeuf specializes in labor and employment law and counsels clients on employment issues and litigates cases involving non-competition agreements, trade secret misappropriation, wage and hour laws, and discrimination and harassment. He is also a member of the Mile High United Way Catalyst Society, a group of business leaders focused on philanthropic leadership.
Jessica Alizadeh- Fairfield & Woods
Practice: Corporate, Public Policy and Governmental Relations
Alizadeh’s practice focuses on real estate development and industrial hemp including land use, governmental relations, approvals, transactional work, public-private finance, and litigation. She has 20 years of experience in government affairs and real estate development as both a lawyer and the founder of a public and government relations firm.
Mark Davidson- Fairfield & Woods
Practice: Construction and Land Development, Litigation
Davidson has more than three decades of experience providing strategic counsel to utility companies, regulators, and developers. He is one of the few lawyers in Colorado to represent all parties in the utility regulation process, including the regulators themselves. He joined Fairfield & Woods in 2018.
Ana Gutierrez- Hogan Lovells
Practice: Environment and Natural Resources
Gutierrez is a member of Hogan Lovells’ environment and natural resources practice and is recognized for her extensive experience with environmental compliance, enforcement, due diligence and permitting issues affecting energy, natural-resource, manufacturing, refinery, and other industrial companies.
Aaron Oakley-Hogan Lovells
Practice: Intellectual Property, Media, and Technology
Oakley is a member of Hogan Lovells’ intellectual property, media and technology group, advises clients across all areas of intellectual property, with a focus on disputes before federal courts, the International Trade Commission, and the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. He also counsels clients on intellectual property portfolio management and patent prosecution
Desta Asfaw- Holland & Hart
Practice:Estate Planning and Wealth Management
Asfaw develops estate, wealth transfer, wealth preservation, and strategic tax planning solutions for high net worth individuals, families, and closely-held businesses. She specializes in complex asset structures involving a variety of wealth transfer, charitable, and business succession planning strategies.
Kylie Crandall- Holland & Hart
Practice: Water Rights, Real Estate, and Project Development and Finance
Crandall’s expertise in water rights, real estate, project development and finance includes acquisition, financing, planning, development, leasing, managing and operating of real estate and water assets. Her clients include developers, municipalities, governmental entities, lenders, natural resource and energy companies, small business owners and farming and ranching families.
Per Larsen- Holland & Hart
Practice: Patent Prosecution, Counseling, and Opinions
Larsen works with technology companies to develop and manage their domestic and foreign patent portfolios, including guiding strategy for protection of technology-related industry standards. Per draws on extensive design and product development experience to shepherd technically complex inventions to allowance.
Chelsea May- Holland & Hart
Practice: Tax and Estate Planning
May, a former CPA, represents high net worth individuals and families with their estate, wealth transfer, philanthropic, and business succession planning needs. She specializes in designing multi-generational estate and succession plans that minimize future conflict, optimize administrative ease, and promote tax efficiency.
Kazuyo Morita- Holland & Hart
Practice:Trademark and Foreign Portfolio Management
Morita helps start-ups to Fortune 100 companies develop trademark and anti-counterfeiting strategies to maximize and protect their brand value and competitive position worldwide. She applies her neuroscience background to deliver creative solutions and synthesize complex information into business-friendly communications.
Sarah Ritchey Haradon- Holland & Hart
Practice: Tax Controversy
Haradon advises clients on corporate, partnership and individual income tax matters, including joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, restructurings, and IRS audits, appeals and litigation. She represents companies and individuals in complex transactions as well as representing clients in front of the U.S. Tax Court.
Helen Rogers- Holland & Hart
Practice: Estate Planning and Wealth Management
Helen specializes in trust, estate, tax and wealth transfer planning for high net worth individuals. She advises clients on developing and administering complex asset management structures involving trusts, corporate entities and private foundations, as well as on business succession matters for closely held businesses.
Jessica Schmidt- Holland & Hart
Practice: Environmental and Natural Resources Litigation
Schmidt handles complex litigation for oil and gas companies and refineries ranging from disputes involving contracts, property damage, lease and right of way issues, pipelines, oil and gas probate, royalty, to Indian law issues. She is also a member of the Workplace Safety and Emergency Response team, specializing in defending regulatory enforcement matters and subsequent litigation.
Nik Stoffel- Holland & Hart
Practice: Public Utilities Regulation
Stoffel focuses on the federal and state regulation of utilities, pipelines, and electricity markets, and the nuances of administrative law and litigation. His clients include large energy consumers, industrial and commercial electric customers, local distribution companies, oil and gas pipelines, project developers, independent power producers, and motor carriers.
Sarah Seedig- Holland & Knight
Seedig represents automobile dealers and investors in the retail automotive industry with respect to buy/sell transactions, including real estate acquisition and disposition or leasing, state licensing and manufacturer approval.
Maxwell Shaffer- Holland & Knight
Shaffer is a member of the firm’s litigation section. He represents clients in all stages of state and federal court proceedings from hearings, depositions and motions practice to trial. His practice focuses primarily on representing and advising hospitality providers.
Andrea Austin- Husch Blackwell
Practice: Real Estate, Development and Construction
Austin’s practice is focused on public-private partnerships and social infrastructure development. Her past work includes the federal Military Housing Privatization Initiative, as well as adaptive re-use of a decommissioned naval air station by a NASA installation in California.
Ben Kass- Husch Blackwell
Practice: Energy and Natural Resources
Kass focuses on renewable energy development, construction, financing and transactional matters. He uses his experience, as both an advisor to clients and a former client himself, to provide pragmatic and cost-effective legal advice and solutions focused on identifying and minimizing risk while achieving favorable results.
Scott Loftin- Husch Blackwell
Practice: Health Care
Loftin helps health care providers and suppliers navigate the complex state and federal regulatory environment, including Medicare and Medicaid requirements of participation, licensing requirements, reimbursement issues and general operational and risk-management considerations. His clients include individual healthcare workers to large hospitals, national telehealth companies, healthcare industry associations and private equity firms.
Jeffrey Miller- Husch Blackwell
Practice: Real Estate, Development and Construction
Miller manages real estate transactional matters and counsels clients on the sale, purchase, financing, development, operation, lease and disposition of apartments, mixed-use communities, retail facilities, office space, multi-use real estate and self-storage facilities. Prior to joining Husch Blackwell, he served as associate counsel for a Denver-based investment firm with more than $100 million in assets.
Zaki Robbins- Moye White
Law, Advanced Energy
Robbins focuses his practice on corporate and finance matters with an emphasis on serving the advanced energy industry. His experience has included facilitating mergers and acquisitions, asset and stock sales, supply agreements among other general corporate matters. He is involved in the community as an advisory board member to Back On My Feet Denver, a nonprofit that combats homelessness through the power of running, community support and employment and housing resources.
Michelle Muhleisen- Ogletree Deakins
Practice: Labor & Employment
Muhleisen focuses her practice on defending employers in claims brought under a full range of labor and employment laws, including Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and various state laws. She also creates and provides workplace training programs to employers on sexual harassment, workplace investigations, corrective action and discipline, and traditional labor matters to serve clients.
Lia Szasz- Otis & Bedingfield
Practice: Business and Real Estate Litigation
Szasz has obtained favorable results for her clients before both judges and juries and also encourages clients to seek alternative means of dispute resolution as well. When not practicing law, she operates her cow-calf ranch with her family, which helps her to assist clients with a wide range of agricultural legal services.
Melinda Beck- Otten Johnson Robinson Neff + Ragonetti
Practice: Land Use, Real Estate
Beck joined Otten Johnson in 2019 has more than 20 years of experience as an attorney in government and in private practice in real estate and land use law. Her conservation law expertise includes the donation and purchase and sale of conservation easements to land trusts and local governments by private landowners throughout Colorado and nationally.
Seth Cohen- Otten Johnson Robinson Neff + Ragonetti
Practice: Business Transactions, Real Estate
Cohen Otten Johnson in 2018. He is a business attorney, veteran private equity executive and former small business owner with significant transactional, capital markets and mergers & acquisitions experience. As a member of the firm’s real estate and business transactions and capital markets practice groups, he will continue to represent real estate investment and developer clients, private equity funds and business owners.
Amanda Branson- Pollart Miller
Practice: Insurance Law, Workers’ Comp
Branson joined Pollart Miller in 2013 and represents employers and insurance carriers before state courts and administrative agencies. She previously held a judicial clerkship in the 18th Judicial District and practiced at Lasater & Martin, where she defended insurance carriers in complex construction defect cases. At Pollart Miller, her practice focuses on workers’ compensation and subrogation.
Finity Jernigan- Polsinelli
Practice: Venture Capital & Emerging Growth Companies
Jernigan advises clients on a variety of corporate matters and helps them raise capital, execute acquisitions and divestitures and comply with regulatory requirements. Her experience spans early stage investments to mergers and sales of large companies. She has particular experience working with entrepreneurs, private equity fund and venture capital funds in the food, beverage and natural products space.
Christopher Reiss- Polsinelli
Practice: Corporate & Transactional
Reiss leverages his experience in corporate law and as a chief operating officer of an athletic and lifestyle company to develop business solutions for clients involved in large-scale transactions and multi-million mergers and acquisitions. He has represented clients ranging from national hotel and resorts to academic medical centers.
Milan Vinnola- Polsinelli
Practice: Chemical Science Patent Prosecution
Vinnola leverages her prior hands-on, industrial experience with the FDA and her understanding of biotechnology and pharmaceutical technologies to offer clients real world perspective and guidance in her intellectual property practice.
Kristin Walker- Polsinelli
Practice: Real Estate
Walker counsels clients on real estate transactions and development projects, including economic development incentives and land use approvals. She has acted as counsel for both landlords and tenants in retail, office and manufacturing lease transactions throughout the country. She has also represented clients in the renewable energy industry, specifically as lender’s and borrower’s counsel in wind energy financing projects.
Peter Waltz- Polsinelli
Practice: Securities & Corporate Finance
Waltz advises companies in all phases of the business cycle and provides ongoing advice and counsel on day-to-day operational, business, and legal issues, including the preparation and negotiation of documents related to entity selection and formation, corporate structure, corporate governance, and commercial contract matters.
Jennifer Alldredge- Robinson Waters & O’Dorisio
Practice: Family Law, Mediation and Arbitration
Alldredge develops solutions that help clients navigate difficult situations such as divorce and child custody. She provides guidance and advice to individuals during an emotional and life-changing time. Jennifer provides a clear, efficient and reasoned approach to help clients move through the divorce process in a supportive way.
Kim Bruetsch- Robinson Waters & O’Dorisio
Practice: Commercial Real Estate, Employment
Bruetsch received a bachelor’s degree from Monmouth College and a law degree from the University of Denver College of Law. Prior to joining RWO, Kim served as a law clerk for the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Bobby Baldock.
Chad McShane- Robinson Waters & O’Dorisio
Practice: Construction, Real Estate
McShane has more than 20 years of trial experience, including acting as lead counsel in a variety of jurisdictions including Colorado, California, Florida, Iowa, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. He is a member of the Colorado and Denver Bar Associations. His practice area is primarily construction and real estate litigation.
Tim Shea- Robinson Waters & O’Dorisio
Practice: Commercial Real Estate
Shea is an equity shareholder with an emphasis in commercial real estate. He is a member of the real estate practice group with experience handling various commercial real estate transactions. Prior to joining Robinson Waters & O’Dorisio, he authored an article published by the University of Denver Law Review, “The Constitutional Constraints on State Regulation of the Internet: ACLU v. Johnson, 78 Univ. of Den. L Rev. 231 (2000).”
Cody Barela- Sherman & Howard
Practice: Corporate, Transactional
Barela is a corporate and transactional member in Sherman & Howard’s Denver office. He works with companies of all sizes at all stages of growth on technology-related transactions. He helps clients develop contracting strategies to address data security risks. He also advises clients on mergers and acquisitions, corporate operations, and general business matters.
Nick DeWeese- Sherman & Howard
Practice: Litigation, Trials, Appeals
DeWeese is a litigation, trials and appeals member in Sherman & Howard’s Denver office. He represents clients in large commercial disputes and in complex contractual, tort, property, financial, healthcare, and other matters. He also has recently handled a range of intellectual property disputes, including Lanham Act and trademark- and patent-infringement claims, for pharmaceutical, medical products and other national companies.
Jessica Diaz- Sherman & Howard
Practice: Estate and Tax Planning
Diaz is an estate and tax planning member in Sherman & Howard’s Denver office, where she focuses her practice on sophisticated estate, tax, and business succession planning. She works with clients to address planning needs and designs creative solutions that integrate each client’s family values and dynamics with sophisticated wealth transfer strategies.
Beth Ann Lennon- Sherman & Howard
Practice: Labor & Employment
Lennon is a labor and employment member in Sherman & Howard’s Denver office. She counsels Colorado employers and national companies in their labor and employment law needs, from drafting policies and contracts to providing guidance and representation when faced with agency action or litigation in state or federal court.
Allison MacKinnon- Welborn Sullivan Meck & Tooley
Practice: Oil and Gas, Acquisitions, Divestitures
MacKinnon represents publicly traded and privately held companies in oil and gas transactions, with a focus on acquisitions and divestitures in the upstream and midstream energy sectors. She has also represented clients in a variety of domestic and international mining projects and transactions.
Nick Boeving- Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell
Practice: Investigations and Compliance, Commercial Litigation
Boeving focuses his legal practice on government investigations and complex commercial litigation matters at the trial and appellate levels. Prior to joining WTO, he served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of New York, Civil Division and served two year-long judicial appellate clerkships for 8th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Diana Murphy and 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Debra Livingston.
Webster Cash- Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell
Practice: Commercial Litigation, Appellate
Cash represents business clients in high-stakes commercial disputes nationwide. Recent successes include defending an oil and gas company in two trials with $800 million and $400 million at stake, respectively, and helping win defense verdicts in each. He served as a law clerk to Colorado Supreme Corut Justice Monica Márquez and to Colorado Court of Appeals Judge Arthur Roy.
Tommy Olsen- Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell
Practice: Commercial Litigation, Antitrust and Competition
Tommy Olsen represents clients in complex civil litigation, including commercial disputes, professional liability claims, and catastrophic tort cases. He recently won a defense verdict for a recreation industry client in a highly public, wrongful death jury trial. Before joining WTO, Tommy worked in the litigation department of a national, full-service law firm and served a judicial clerkship in the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado.
Jennifer Parker- Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell
Practice: Commercial Litigation, Healthcare Professional Liability
Parker represents companies and individuals in complex commercial litigation matters. She dedicates a significant portion of her practice to defending hospitals, physicians, and nurses in medical malpractice lawsuits. She clerked for Colorado Supreme Court Justice Brian Boatright and 20th Judicial District judges Lael Montgomery (retired) and Patrick Butler.
Eric Robertson- Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell
Practice: Appellate, Class Actions
Robertson focuses his legal practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, especially class action defense, at the trial and appellate levels. Eric serves on the WTO team that represents Whirlpool in all of its consumer class action defense nationwide. Before joining WTO, he served as a law clerk to Colorado Supreme Court Justice William Hood and Chief Justice Michael Bender and Colorado Court of Appeals Chief Judge Alan Loeb.
Marissa Ronk- Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell
Practice: Commercial Litigation, Class Actions
Ronk represents clients in complex commercial litigation at the trial and appellate levels. She has helped win significant victories for major clients, including Ford, Skyjack, and State Farm. Prior to joining WTO, she was a litigation associate at a large, international law firm, where she handled product liability and consumer class action matters.
Colin Baumchen – Woods Aitken
Practice: Construction Law, Commercial Litigation
Baumchen practices primarily in the areas of construction law and commercial litigation. He advises and represents contractors, subcontractors, owners and other construction-related entities in various aspects of claim and dispute resolution proceedings. Baumchen also has significant experience with mediation, arbitration and litigation in various state and federal courts.