The Colorado Bar Association’s Podcast

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Stairway to ATJ - History of ATJ

What lessons from Colorado Access to Justice history do we need to remember? Our interview with Jon Asher, Director of Colorado Legal Services, Kath Schoen, Former Director of CBA Local Bar Relations and Access to Justice, and Penny Wagner, Statewide Sherlock Program Coordinator, explores where Colorado has been, some of the current access to justice challenges, and where Colorado is going. They discuss the history of legal aid, access to justice policy, and the history of Colorado’s nationally recognized Sherlock Program. They share what gives them hope for the future of access to justice in Colorado and share some success stories that stand out from each of their outstanding careers as access to justice champions.


This episode also features Kathleen McCrohan, Associate Director of the Colorado Lawyers Committee on our pro bono corner.


If you have a topic you would like to hear about or have a program or issue you want to discuss on Stairway to ATJ please email us at

Our Voices - Sarah Parady

Sarah Parady is a partner at Lowrey Parady Lebsack and former president of the Colorado Women’s Bar Association.  In this podcast, she discusses her upbringing and thirst for knowledge, and starting an early college at the age of 16.   Sarah also candid with Courtney Holm and Nicoal Sperrazza about her decision to shift her focus away from litigation, as well as the importance of building a strong community around you, both in work and in life.

Our Voices - David Hersh

David Hersh is a senior shareholder at Burg Simpson and well-renowned in the legal community for his litigation skills and expertise. He has also spent countless hours and time on impressing upon the importance of attorney wellbeing through his work on the Colorado Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being. In this podcast, he discusses his own personal struggles, re-prioritizing his life, and finding a healthy balance for himself and his family.


Courtney Holm 

Nicoal Sperrazza 



David Hersh


Continuing the Story:

· David Hersh

· Colorado Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being

· Video: Focusing on Wellness

Gettin Legal With It - Kyle Robinson

Kyle Robinson is in-house counsel for CommonSpirit Health, one of the largest healthcare non-profits in the world. On this week's episode of Gettin' Legal With it, join Kyle and your host Kevin Cheney as they discuss Kyle's career path into health law. They discuss what skills and education can be useful when considering going into health law and what Kyle's most valuable extracurricular activities were in law school. Additionally, they discuss the difference between being "in-house" and working for a traditional law firm. Finally, they discuss how COVID has impacted health care from the changing nature of where practicing medicine takes place to vaccine mandates.

Our Voices — Sumi Lee

Sumi Lee is the Head of Judicial Diversity Outreach for the Colorado Judicial Branch.  In this podcast, Sumi discusses immigrating to the United States, learning the English language by pocket dictionary in school, and her fearlessness in trying new things.  She also discusses the importance of family, authenticity, and why she decided to dedicate her career to increasing diversity on the bench.  Sumi is a past president of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Colorado, 2014 COBALT graduate, and is a tireless volunteer and leader in many other organizations. 


Nicoal Sperrazza 

Courtney Holm 

Continuing the Story: 

Our Voices — Velveta Golightly-Howell

After a long and illustrious legal career, Velveta Golightly-Howell is now the CEO of Sister-to-Sister: International Network of Professional African American Women, Inc. Listen in as Velveta sits down with Nicoal Sperrazza and Sumi Lee to discuss growing up in a tight-knit community in Alabama, her deep love of learning and education, and her personal experiences including being amongst the first students to integrate into formerly all-white public schools.

Velveta was inducted into the Colorado Women's Hall of Fame in 2020, and received the Colorado Women’s Bar Association’s Mary Lathrop Award the same year.

Stairway to ATJ — Representation in the Profession

Why does representation matter and is it enough? These questions are at the heart of this conversation with Alexi Freeman, Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Denver Law, and Laura Maggio, an immigration attorney with Muhaisen & Muhaisen. They tackle this important issues touching on indemnity, intersectionality, and the need to treat people as individuals. They discuss pipeline work and other efforts to diversify Colorado’s legal community, and share stories of how they identity helped them achieve success.   

This episode also feature Emily Brock, Senior Staff Attorney, with the Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network (RMIAN) in the Pro Bono Corner discussing their programs supporting immigrant children and adults in detention. She highlighted their urgent need for volunteers to help families seeking asylum on the expedited docket.

If you have a topic you would like to hear about or have a program or issue you want to discuss on Stairway to ATJ please email us at

Gettin Legal With It — Dan St. John

Established by former CBA President, Kathleen Hearn Croshal, the CBA’s Greater Colorado Task Force works to eliminate the barriers to participation in programs, leadership, and communications for CBA members who practice outside the Denver metro area, thereby improving the CBA’s value and relevance to its membership. In this episode, Kevin speaks with a member of the GCTF, Daniel St. John. Dan discusses the work of the GCTF, the ongoing lawyer shortage outside of the Denver metro area, and the legal needs of greater Colorado.


Community involvement is important to Dan. He is a member of the Rotary Club of Fort Collins Breakfast and on the Executive Council of the Colorado Bar Association Young Lawyers Division. Dan was the president of the Larimer County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division and a member of the executive committee of the Larimer County Bar Association from 2016 to 2018. He is an active volunteer with all of these organizations. Dan is also a member of the Law Club of Denver, an organization dedicated to teaching legal ethics. Finally, Dan serves as a Commissioner on the Eighth Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission and, in that capacity, reviews local judges and makes retention recommendations when they stand for retention.

Dan’s practice focuses on general civil litigation, common interest community law, landlord-tenant law, real estate law, general business law, and civil appeals. Dan is licensed to practice law in Colorado and Wyoming.

Our Voices with Halleh Omidi

Halleh Omidi is a partner at Hogan Omidi and practices family law.  Raised by her Iranian parents and fully bilingual in Farsi and English, she discusses growing up as a Persian in Colorado and shares what it’s like to be judged for not being “diverse enough.”  Halleh is a member of the Executive Council for the CBA Family Law Section and is a 2020 Colorado Bar Association Leadership Training program graduate.



Linda Moss

Bonnie Schriner



Halleh Omidi


Continuing the Story:


Stairway to ATJ — Pro se Parties and Family Law

Pro se parties in family law cases are unfortunately not uncommon. Securing full representation, or even legal assistance can be unattainable for many families. However, on this episode of Stairway to ATJ, we discuss how attorneys can help without providing full representation and walk us through the resources available at the Court Resource Center. We welcome guests James Garts of Garts Law and Melissa Walter, 1st JD Self Representative Litigant Coordinator, as they give us some insight into what families go through when representing themselves and what attorneys can do to help.


Also, October is host to Pro Bono Week! In this episode’s Pro Bono Corner, we highlight three of our favorite programs taking place this month to celebrate: 4th JD/Pikes Peak region, Arapahoe/Douglas (email, and Denver (email Virginia


If you have a topic you would like to hear about or have a program or issue you want to discuss on Stairway to ATJ please email us at


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