June 24, 2019

Gary Kramer and Patricia Herron Appointed to 18th Judicial District Court

On Wednesday, January 6, 2016, the governor’s office announced his appointment of Gary Kramer and Patricia Herron to the Eighteenth Judicial District Court. Kramer will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. Gerald Rafferty, effective January 23, 2016, and Herron will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. Christopher Cross, effective February 8, 2016.

Kramer is currently the chair of the litigation department at Berenbaum Weinshienk, P.C., where he focuses on complex probate and domestic litigation for high-asset clients throughout Colorado. He received both his B.A. and J.D. from the University of Colorado, where he was in the Order of the Coif in law school and was articles editor for the law review. He is a contributing author to CLE’s Colorado Estate Planning Handbook. 

Herron is currently a Senior Assistant Attorney General in the litigation division, where she focuses on civil cases involving torts, civil rights, antitrust violations, personal injuries, and medical injuries. She also currently works at the Aurora Municipal Court, where she is a relief judge. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Oklahoma and her law degree from the University of Tulsa College of Law.

For more information about the appointments, click here.

Shay Whitaker and Peter Michaelson Appointed to 18th Judicial District Court Bench

On Monday, November 30, 2015, the governor’s office announced the appointment of Shay Whitaker and Peter Michaelson to the Eighteenth Judicial District Court bench. They will fill vacancies created by the retirements of Hon. Angela Arkin and Hon. Timothy Fasing, effective January 1, 2016. There are two additional vacancies forthcoming on the Eighteenth Judicial District Court bench: Hon. Gerald Rafferty will retire effective January 23, 2016, and Hon. Christopher Cross will retire effective February 8, 2016. Applications are still being accepted for the vacancy created by Judge Cross’s retirement.

Shay Whitaker is currently a criminal defense attorney at Whitaker & Associates in Aurora. She received both her undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, and her law degree from The Ohio State University. In 1997, she moved to Denver, and has been in private practice at various firms since then. She also serves as appointed counsel for Truancy Court.

Peter Michaelson is an attorney at Hamre, Rodriguez, Ostrander & Dingess, P.C. in Denver. He is also a judge on the Custer County Court. Since 1997, he has also operated his own practice in Westcliffe, Colorado, where he emphasizes civil litigation, mechanics’ liens and construction defects, business law, real property law, and probate matters. Mr. Michaelson is licensed to practice law in Colorado, Minnesota, the U.S. District of Colorado, and the U.S. Supreme Court. He became a Deputy District Attorney in 1984 and was elected District Attorney for the Fifth Judicial District in 1988, where was reelected twice.

For more information about the appointments, click here.

Hon. Christopher Cross to Retire from 18th Judicial District Court

On Friday, November 20, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced an upcoming vacancy on the Eighteenth Judicial District Court occasioned by the retirement of Hon. Christopher Cross, effective February 8, 2016. Hon. Christopher Cross was appointed to the Eighteenth Judicial District Court bench in January 2009, where he oversees a civil and criminal docket. Prior to his appointment, he had been a county court judge in Arapahoe County. He was a Deputy District Attorney in Denver for six years, followed by 13 years in private practice. He received his law degree from the University of Denver and his undergraduate degree from Denison University in Ohio.

Applications are already being accepted for another vacancy in the Eighteenth Judicial District, and all applications received by December 1 will be considered for this vacancy as well. Those who previously submitted applications for the vacancies created by the retirement of Hon. Angela Arkin and Hon. Gerald Rafferty may apply for the new vacancy with the same previously submitted materials. Application forms are available on the State Judicial website or from the ex officio chair of the Eighteenth Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice Richard Gabriel. Application forms must be submitted no later than 4 p.m. on December 1, 2015.

For more information about the vacancy, click here.

Finalists Selected for Vacancies on 18th Judicial District Court Bench

On Thursday, November 12, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the selection of six nominees to fill two vacancies on the Eighteenth Judicial District Court Bench. The vacancies will be created January 1, 2016, by the retirement of Hon. Angela Arkin and Hon. Timothy L. Fasing. The six nominees are Gary M. Kramer of Greenwood Village; Ben L. Leutwyler, III, of Highlands Ranch; Michael W. Melito of Littleton; Peter F. Michaelson of Centennial; Teresa W. Seymour of Castle Rock; and Shay K. Whitaker of Aurora.

Gary Kramer is currently the Chair of the Litigation Practice Group at Berenbaum Weinshienk P.C. in Greenwood Village, where he focus on complex probate and domestic relations litigation. Ben L. Leutwyler, III, is a partner at Mike Hulen, PC in Littleton. He has experience as a criminal prosecutor, criminal defense attorney, civil litigator, and in wills and estate planning. Michael W. Melito is a Senior Assistant Attorney General at the Colorado Attorney General’s Office, where he has been since 2005. Prior to that, he was a J.A.G. attorney in the U.S. Army. Peter F. Michaelson is an attorney at Hamre, Rodriguez, Ostrander & Dingess, P.C. in Denver. Since 1997, he has also operated his own practice in Westcliffe, Colorado, where he emphasizes civil litigation, mechanics’ liens and construction defects, business law, real property law, and probate matters. Teresa W. Seymour is a solo practitioner at Teresa W. Seymour LLC, where she practices criminal defense law. Shay K. Whitaker is an attorney at Whitaker & Associates in Aurora. She primarily practices criminal defense law.

Under the Colorado Constitution, the governor has 15 days in which to select two of the nominees for appointment to the district court bench. Comments regarding the nominees may be emailed to the governor at gov_judicialappointments@state.co.us. For more information about the vacancies, click here.

Hon. Gerald Rafferty to Retire from 18th Judicial District Court

On Friday, October 30, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced a change in the meeting schedule of the Eighteenth Judicial District Nominating Commission. On November 10, 2015, the nominating commission will meet to review and select applicants for nomination to the district court bench to fill vacancies created by the retirement of Hon. Timothy Fasing and Hon. Angela Arkin, both effective January 1, 2016. Applications previously submitted for the vacancy created by Judge Rafferty’s retirement will now be considered for the vacancy created by Judge Fasing’s retirement. Judge Rafferty will retire on January 23, 2016, and the nominating commission will meet on December 18, 2015, to review and select applicants for nomination.

Applications are still being accepted for the vacancy created by Judge Rafferty’s retirement. The deadline to submit applications is 4 p.m. on December 1, 2015. Eligible applicants must be attorneys admitted to practice law in Colorado for five years and must be qualified electors of the Eighteenth Judicial District. Application forms are available on the State Judicial website or from the ex officio chair of the Eighteenth Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice Richard Gabriel.

Click here for more information on the vacancies and for contact information for the members of the nominating commission.

Honorable Angela Arkin and Honorable Gerald Rafferty to Retire from Eighteenth Judicial District Court

On Tuesday, September 15, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced that Hon. Angela Arkin will retire from the Eighteenth Judicial District Court, effective January 1, 2016, and Hon. Gerald Rafferty will retire from the same court, effective Jan. 23, 2016. The application period is now open for both vacancies.

Hon. Angela Arkin was appointed to the Eighteenth Judicial District Court in 2002, where she oversees a domestic relations docket. Prior to her appointment, she was a district court magistrate in Arapahoe County with a domestic relations and juvenile docket. She is a frequent lecturer and author for CLE in Colorado, speaking on topics related to family law, DNA evidence, and jurisdiction, and she writes for the Practitioner’s Guide to Colorado Domestic Relations Law. She received her law degree from Emory Law School and is licensed in Colorado, Georgia, and the District of Columbia.

Hon. Gerald Rafferty was appointed to the Eighteenth Judicial District Court in 1999. Prior to his appointment, he was a Deputy District Attorney in the Denver DA’s office from 1995-1999 and was a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office from 1989-1995 and 1978-1988. He was Of Counsel at a law firm from 1988-1989. Judge Rafferty served as a pilot in the U.S. Air Force from 1967-1972 and was an FBI special agent from 1973-1977. He earned his law degree, with honors, from John Marshall Law School in 1978.

Applications are now being accepted for the judicial vacancies. Application forms are available on the State Judicial website and also from the ex officio chair of the Eighteenth Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice Allison Eid. Applications must be received no later than 4 p.m. on October 14, 2015, and anyone wishing to nominate another must do so no later than 4 p.m. on October 7, 2015.

For more information about the vacancies and application process, click here.

Phillip Douglass Appointed to 18th Judicial District Court Bench

On Friday, June 5, 2015, the governor’s office announced Governor Hickenlooper’s appointment of Phillip Douglass to the district court bench in the Eighteenth Judicial District. Douglass will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. J. Mark Hannen, effective July 1, 2015.

Currently, Douglass is Of Counsel at Rowe Law, LLC in Denver, where he focuses his practice on general commercial litigation, labor and employment law, arbitration, and internal corporate investigations. Prior to his work at Rowe Law, Douglass was in-house counsel at Qwest, MediaOne, and US WEST, and he was also an associate at Baker & Botts in Texas. Douglass earned his undergraduate degree from Brigham Young University and his law degree from Cornell Law School.

 

Finalists Selected for Judgeship on 18th Judicial District Court

On Thursday, May 21, 2015, the governor’s office announced the selection of three nominees for a judicial vacancy on the Eighteenth Judicial District Court. The vacancy will be created by the retirement of Hon. J. Mark Hannen, effective July 1, 2015. The three nominees are Phillip L. Douglass of Parker, Michael W. Melito of Littleton, and Peter F. Michaelson of Centennial.

Under the Colorado Constitution, Governor Hickenlooper has fifteen days in which to appoint one of the nominees to the judgeship. Comments regarding any of the nominees may be emailed to the governor at gov_judicialappointments@state.co.us. For more information about the nominees, click here.

Hon. J. Mark Hannen to Retire from 18th Judicial District Court

On Monday, April 6, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the retirement of Hon. J. Mark Hannen from the district court for the Eighteenth Judicial District, effective July 1, 2015.

Judge Hannen was appointed to the district court bench in 2002. Prior to his appointment, he had been the Douglas County Attorney since 1989. He has practiced law at many firms, emphasizing civil litigation, real estate, commercial transactions, and local government law. He received many awards for professionalism, competence, and pro bono work while in private practice. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame, magna cum laude, and his law degree from the University of Denver College of Law.

Applications are now being accepted for the vacancy on the Eighteenth Judicial District Court bench. Eligible applicants must be qualified electors of the Eighteenth Judicial District and must have been admitted to practice law for five years. Application forms are available from the State Judicial website and also from Justice Brian Boatright, the ex officio chair of the Eighteenth Judicial District Judicial Nominating Commission. Applications must be received no later than 4 p.m. on May 6, 2015, and anyone wishing to nominate another must do so no later than 4 p.m. on April 29, 2015.

For more information about the vacancy, and for contact information for members of the judicial nominating commission, click here.

Bonnie McLean Appointed to Eighteenth Judicial District Bench

On Wednesday, September 4, 2014, the governor’s office announced his appointment of Bonnie McLean to the bench of the Eighteenth Judicial District Court, encompassing Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert, and Lincoln counties. McLean will replace Hon. Vincent R. White, who is retiring. The appointment is effective January 13, 2015.

McLean is currently a magistrate in the Eighteenth Judicial District, where she presides over a juvenile court docket and is in charge of the district’s mental health, drug, and veterans’ treatment courts. She helped develop the first drug court in the Eighteenth Judicial District. Prior to her appointment as a magistrate in 2006, McLean worked as a deputy district attorney in the Eighteenth Judicial District, where she was in charge of the juvenile delinquency unit. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado and her law degree from the University of Denver.

 

Hon. Vincent R. White to Retire from 18th Judicial District Bench

On Thursday, June 19, 2014, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the retirement of Hon. Vincent R. White of the Eighteenth Judicial District Court bench, effective January 13, 2015. Judge White has been on the district court bench in the 18th Judicial District since 2005. He also continues to serve as a Lt. Colonel in the Air Force Reserve, where he litigates employment claims. He earned his bachelor’s degree from North Carolina State University in 1986 and his J.D. from North Carolina Central University School of Law in 1990.

The Eighteenth Judicial District Nominating Commission is accepting applications for the vacancy. Application forms are available from the ex officio chair of the nominating commission, Justice Monica Marquez, and are also available from the State Judicial website. The original signed application, along with an identical electronic copy in PDF format, must be submitted to Justice Marquez no later than 4 p.m. on August 4, 2014. Anyone wishing to nominate another person must do so no later than 4 p.m. on July 28, 2014.

For more information about the vacancy and for contact information for members of the Eighteenth Judicial District Nominating Commission, click here.

Judge Carlos A. Samour, Jr., Named Chief Judge of 18th Judicial District

On Thursday, May 8, 2014, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced that Colorado Supreme Court Chief Justice Nancy Rice appointed Judge Carlos A. Samour, Jr. as the Chief Judge of the 18th Judicial District. This appointment will be effective upon current Chief Judge William Sylvester’s retirement on July 1, 2014.

Judge Samour is a graduate of Columbine High School and graduated with honors from the University of Colorado at Denver with a degree in psychology. He received his law degree with honors from the University of Denver. Following law school, Judge Samour clerked for Judge Robert McWilliams of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. He then joined Holland & Hart in Denver and was in private practice for five years before serving as a deputy district attorney in Denver for 10 years. Judge Samour was appointed as a district court judge in 2006 and took the bench in 2007.

In addition to maintaining a docket, as chief judge, Samour will be responsible for appointing the district administrator, chief probation officer, and clerks of the court; assisting in the personnel, financial, and case-management duties of the district; and seeing that the business of the courts is conducted efficiently and effectively.