The Colorado Bar Association’s Podcast

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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.

 

Hosts:

Linda Moss

Bonnie Schriner

 

Guest:

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 18SelfHelp@judicial.state.co.us), and Denver (email Virginia Virginia@denbar.org).

 

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 ATJpodcast@cobar.org.

 

Our Voices with Joi Kush and Dave Johnson

In this episode, Bonnie Schriner and Nicoal Sperrazza sit down with current CBA President, Joi Kush, and former CBA President, Dave Johnson.  Joi and Dave discuss significant moments in each of their lives and how they manifested their individual passions for service and calls to leadership.  They also discuss how a chance encounter at a Bar Association function unfolded into an eventual professional partnership and the opening of their own law firm, Johnson Kush.

 

Hosts:

Bonnie Schriner

Nicoal Sperrazza

 

Guest:

Joi Kush

Dave Johnson

 

Continuing the Story:

¡Bienvenidos! with guests Judge Christine Arguello and Maria Arias of Law School… Yes We Can

Over the past few weeks, this podcast has looked at what Hispanic Heritage is, the dearth of Hispanic changemakers in the form of attorneys and politicians in this state, as well as topics that are of particular importance to the Colorado Latino community. In our final episode of ¡Bienvenidos! our discussion takes a forward-looking lens as we focus on what is happening in the community to change the status quo. Hispanic Latinos make up over 20% of the population in Colorado, but only 6% of the state’s attorneys. Therefore, it is obvious that the Colorado Latino community faces unique barriers to getting into college, getting into law school, and making a career in the law. Working to change that is Law School…Yes We Can. Today we are honored to have in the studio the founder of Law School…Yes We Can, Judge Christine Arguello and the organization’s Executive Director, Maria Arias.

Gettin Legal With It — Vikrama Chandrashekar — South Asian Bar Association of Colorado

Vikrama (Vika) Chandrashekar is the President of the South Asian Bar Association of Colorado (SABA) and a member of the Trial Section of Moye|White. He handles matters across a wide range of industries concerning general commercial litigation, with an increasing focus on bankruptcy, creditors’ rights, and restructuring. Vika has significant experience in property, real estate, and landlord/tenant disputes, complex business disputes, construction matters, and with municipal/governmental issues. On the bankruptcy side, Vika has successfully litigated adversary proceedings and counseled clients through complex bankruptcy issues under both Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code. He enjoys the intricacies of trial work and relishes the opportunity to appear in the courtroom.

Before joining Moye White, Vika worked at a local firm where he represented cities, municipalities, school districts, and other public entities involving civil rights and tort claims. In this role, Vika defended government entities and employees against a variety of claims in federal and state court. He worked to identify and execute strategies that benefit his clients at all phases from pre-litigation through case resolution by dispositive motion, trial, settlement, or appeal. He has also worked for the Denver City Attorney’s Office and the 20th Judicial District Attorney’s Office.

In his conversation with Kevin, he discusses his day-to-day as a member of the trail section for a large firm, the South Asian Bar Association, the Supreme Court’s new rules on EDI and other professional responsibilities training for attorneys, and his advice on law students considering commercial litigation.

 

¡Bienvenidos! with guests Crystal Murillo Juan Marcano

In today’s episode, host Annie Martínez leads a discussion on what it means to be an agent of change in the Hispanic community in greater Colorado. From recent census data, we know that almost 22% of Coloradoans identify as Hispanic, which is up from past years. We also know that there is a large contingency of the Hispanic community living in the Aurora area.

It is our honor to bring into the conversation two Hispanic members of the Aurora City Council: Crystal Murillo, Diversity Program Coordinator, Undergraduate Admission for the University of Denver who represents Ward I and Juan Marcano, BIM Manager and architectural designer who represents Ward IV.

 

Our Voices — Jon Olafson

Jon Olafson is a partner at Lewis Brisbois in the Denver office and as part of his role on the CBA’s Executive Council, he chairs the Racial Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusivity Committee.  He also serves as co-chair of the newly formed Colorado Diverse Attorney Community Circle (CODACC).  He sits down with Courtney Holm and Nicoal Sperrazza to discuss his small-town upbringing, why inclusivity is important to him, and how he developed his own call to action.

 

Hosts:

Nicoal Sperrazza

Courtney Holm

 

Guest:

Jon Olafson

 

Continuing the Story:

¡Bienvenidos! with guests Yuridia Bazan & Cristina Uribe Reyes

In the second installment of our limited series podcast honoring Hispanic Heritage Month, we discuss Hispanic women in the law, particularly in Colorado. As of a report issued in 2020 by the Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel, 6.42% of the attorney population in Colorado identify as Hispanic. Per the census, we know that the Hispanic population in Colorado is 21.8%. While we don't know the number of Hispanic attorneys that identify as women, we do know that nationally the statistics are not great. Per a report by the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA), women make up about 2% of US Hispanic lawyers. We also saw in these reports that women attorneys tend to leave the practice earlier — at around the 10-year mark.

With these sobering statistics in mind, host Annie Martínez speaks with two Hispanic women attorneys practicing in Colorado to hear their insights and their experiences, what led them to the law, and what they've had to overcome.

Both of our guests today own their own practices. Yuridia Bazan of Yuri Bazan focuses on family relations and personal injury and Cristina Uribe Reyes of Uribe Reyes Law works on family-based immigration, deportation defense, and citizenship applications.  

 

¡Bienvenidos! with guest Carlos Romo

What is Hispanic Heritage Month? Who exactly is considered Hispanic? And is it Hispanic or Latin? What about latinx or latine? Is one more correct than the others? Introducing ¡Bienvenidos! A limited podcast series celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month brought to you by the Colorado and Denver Bar Associations.

 

Host, Annie Martínez, calls her legal practice a “defense-minded practice.” Her solo firm, Bridge Legal Solutions, handles family, criminal and juvenile defense law, and often her cases are at the intersection of those areas. Annie is the current 2nd Vice President of the Denver Bar Association and Past President of the Colorado Hispanic Bar Association. Each week, Annie will explore the backgrounds and careers of some of Colorado’s leading Hispanic and Latin lawyers while discussing a wide variety of topics relevant to the month’s celebrations.

 

On today’s inaugural episode, Annie speaks with Carlos Romo, President-Elect of the Colorado Hispanic Bar Association and a nationally recognized environmental and natural resources attorney with Williams Weese Pepple & Ferguson. Carlos discusses his professional journey as an attorney and his personal journey as the son of both Hispanic and Creole heritage. Annie and Carlos explore the history of Hispanic Heritage Month, the importance of community, and what being “Hispanic” means to them.

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