May 23, 2019

Michael J. Grattan, III, Appointed to Mesa County Court

On Monday, January 9, 2017, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the governor’s appointment of Michael J. Grattan, III, to the Mesa County Court. Grattan will fill a vacancy created by the appointment of Hon. Gretchen Larsen to the district court bench in the Twenty-first Judicial District, effective January 1, 2017.

Grattan is currently a solo practitioner in Grand Junction at Michael J. Grattan, III, P.C., where he offers services in both transactional law and litigation, including in the areas of business law, employment law, intellectual property law, real estate law, and arbitration and mediation. He was previously an attorney with Younge & Hockensmith, P.C., a sole practitioner and Deputy City Attorney in the City of Elkhart, Indiana, and an associate at Warrick & Boyn in Elkhart. He received his law degree from the College of William and Mary Law School and his undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia at Charlottesville.

For more information about the appointment, click here.

Finalists Selected for Mesa County Court Vacancy

On Monday, December 19, 2016, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the selection of three finalists for a vacancy on the Mesa County Court. The vacancy will occur January 1, 2017, and is occasioned by the appointment of Hon. Gretchen B. Larson to the Twenty-first Judicial District Court.

The three nominees are William DeFord of Grand Junction, Michael Grattan, III, of Grand Junction, and Kevin Kennedy of Grand Junction. William DeFord is a partner at Dufford Waldeck Milburn & Krohn, LLP, where he practices real estate, commercial, and natural resource litigation. Michael Grattan, III, is a solo practitioner at Michael J. Grattan, P.C., where he focuses on probate and business law. Kevin Kennedy is a magistrate in the Mesa County Court.

Comments regarding any of the nominees may be emailed to the governor at gov_judicialappointments@state.co.us. For more information on the nominees, click here.

Twenty-first Judicial District Announces Mesa County Court Vacancy

On Thursday, November 3, 2016, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced a vacancy on the Mesa County Court in the Twenty-first Judicial District. The vacancy will be created by the appointment of Hon. Gretchen B. Larson to the Twenty-first Judicial District Court, effective January 1, 2017.

Applications are now being accepted for the upcoming vacancy. Eligible applicants must be qualified electors of Mesa County and must have been admitted to practice law in Colorado for five years. Application forms are available on the State Judicial website or from the ex officio chair of the Twenty-first Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice William Hood, III. Applications must be received no later than 4 p.m. on December 1, 2016, to be considered. Anyone wishing to nominate another must do so no later than 4 p.m. on November 23, 2016.

For more information about the vacancy, click here.

Gretchen Larson Appointed to 21st Judicial District Court

On Wednesday, November 2, 2016, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the governor’s appointment of Gretchen Larson to the Twenty-first Judicial District Court Bench. She will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. Thomas L. Deister, effective January 1, 2017.

Larson is currently a Mesa County Court judge. She was appointed to the bench in 2006, and she oversees a mix of civil and criminal cases. Prior to her appointment to the Mesa County Court, Larson was a District Attorney in the Twenty-first and Ninth judicial districts. She received her undergraduate degrees from Southern Methodist University and her law degree from the University of Colorado School of Law.

For more information about the appointment, click here.

Honorable Thomas M. Deister to Retire from 21st Judicial District Court

DeisterOn Friday, August 19, 2016, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the retirement of Hon. Thomas M. Deister from the Twenty-first Judicial District Court, effective January 1, 2017. Judge Deister was appointed to the Mesa County Court in 1994 and the Twenty-first Judicial District Court in October 2005. Prior to his appointment to the county court bench, he was in private practice in Grand Junction and served in the Judge Advocate General’s Corp. in the U.S. Navy for nine years. He received both his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Denver.

Applications are now being accepted for the upcoming vacancy. Eligible applicants must be qualified electors of the Twenty-first Judicial District at the time of investiture and must have been admitted to practice law in Colorado for five years. Application forms are available from the State Judicial website or from the ex officio chair of the Twenty-first Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice Monica Marquez. Applications must be received no later than 4 p.m. on September 26, 2016, and anyone wishing to nominate another must do so in writing no later than September 19, 2016.

For more information about the vacancy, click here.

Lance Timbreza Appointed to 21st Judicial District Court

IMG_0263-209x300On Friday, July 1, 2016, Governor Hickenlooper appointed Lance Timbreza to the district court bench for the Twenty-First Judicial District. Timbreza will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. David A. Bottger, effective August 12, 2016. The Colorado State Judicial Branch also announced that District Court Judge Brian Flynn will replace Judge Bottger as the Chief Judge of the Twenty-First Judicial District Court.

Timbreza is currently at the Daniels Law Group, LLC, where he focuses on real estate litigation, commercial litigation, and family law. Prior to his work at the Daniels Law Group, Timbreza was at Traylor, Tompkins & Black, P.C., in Grand Junction. Timbreza is very active in the legal community. He has served as president of the Mesa County Bar Association, was chair of the CBA’s Young Lawyers Division, and is a Fellow of the Colorado Bar Foundation and has served on its Board of Trustees. Timbreza also is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. He received his undergraduate degree from Mesa State College and his law degree from Gonzaga University School of Law.

For more information about the appointment, click here.

Finalists Selected for Vacancy on 21st Judicial District Court

On Wednesday, June 16, 2016, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced that the Twenty-First Judicial District Nominating Commission selected three finalists for a vacancy on the District Court, occasioned by the retirement of Hon. David A. Bottger, effective August 12, 2016. The three nominees are Michael J. Gratton, III, of Grand Junction; Gretchen B. Larson, of Grand Junction; and Lance P. Timbreza, of Grand Junction.

Under the Colorado Constitution, the governor has 15 days from June 15 in which to select one of the nominees for appointment to the bench. Comments regarding any of the nominees may be emailed to the governor at gov_judicialappointments@state.co.us.

For more information about the vacancy and the nominees, click here.

Hon. David A. Bottger to Retire from 21st Judicial District Court

On Thursday, April 14, 2016, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the retirement of Hon. David A. Bottger of the Twenty-First Judicial District Court, effective August 12, 2016.

Judge Bottger was appointed to the district court bench in 1987, and was appointed Chief Judge of the Twenty-First Judicial District Court in 2005. Prior to his appointment, Judge Bottger was Mesa County’s first magistrate, where he served from 1983 to 1987. He was in private practice from 1977 to 1983 and also served as a law clerk for Colorado Supreme Court Justice Lee. He is a member of the Colorado and Mesa County bar associations. Judge Bottger received his undergraduate degree from Ohio Northern and his law degree from Notre Dame University School of Law.

Applications are now being accepted for the upcoming vacancy. Eligible applicants must be qualified electors of the twenty-first judicial district and must have been licensed to practice law in Colorado for five years. Application forms are available on the State Judicial website or from the ex officio chair of the Twenty-First Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice Allison H. Eid. Application forms must be received no later than 4 p.m. on May 18, 2016, and anyone wishing to nominate another must do so no later than 4 p.m. on May 11, 2016.

For more information about the vacancy, click here.

Daniel P. Rubinstein Appointed District Attorney for 21st Judicial District

On Tuesday, October 6, 2015, the governor appointed Daniel P. Rubinstein as District Attorney for the 21st Judicial District, effective October 16, 2015. Rubenstein will fill a vacancy created by the resignation of Pete Hautzinger.

Currently, Rubenstein is Chief Deputy District Attorney in the 21st Judicial District, where he manages a caseload of murder cases, racketeering, and organized crime, and supervises felony prosecution for the Mesa County District Attorney’s Office. He has been a prosecutor in Grand Junction since 1996, minus two years in private practice from 2003 to 2004. From 2005 to 2011, he was cross-designated as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney where he targeted cartels and organized crime. He received his undergraduate degree from University of the Pacific and his law degree from Drake University Law School.

HB 12-1329: Public Trustee in Certain Counties to Cease Being Appointed by Governor and Instead County Treasurer to Be Public Trustee for Those Counties

On March 21, 2012, Rep. Ray Scott introduced HB 12-1329 – Concerning the County Treasurer Becoming the Public Trustee in Certain Counties Where the Public Trustee is Currently Appointed by the Governor. This summary is published here courtesy of the Colorado Bar Association’s e-Legislative Report.

Currently, the 11 counties designated as counties of the first or second class for purposes of the public trustee law have a public trustee who is appointed by the governor. In counties of the third class, the county treasurer serves as the public trustee. On January 1, 2013, certain counties of the second class change to counties of the third class. In such counties, the term of the public trustee appointed by the governor expires on December 31, 2012, and the county treasurer of the county becomes the public trustee on January 1, 2013. Under the bill, certain counties shall no longer have a separate office of the public trustee with the trustee appointed by the governor. The bill is assigned to the Local Government Committee; the bill is scheduled for committee review on Monday, April 16 at 1:30 p.m.

Since this summary, the House Committee on Local Government laid over the bill unamended–their amendments failed.

Summaries of other featured bills can be found here.

Colorado Judicial Institute to Honor Judges Kuenhold, Stewart, and Carney, and Magistrate Rubinstein at Excellence Dinner; CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin to be Keynote Speaker

The Colorado Judicial Institute (CJI) has announced that the 2011 Judicial Excellence Awards will be presented to the following outstanding judges and magistrates at the Judicial Excellence for Colorado Dinner on November 1, 2011:

  • District Court Chief Judge O. John Kuenhold (12th Judicial District)
  • District Court Presiding Judge C. Jean Stewart (Denver Probate Court)
  • County Court Judge Christine Carney (Larimer County)
  • Magistrate Stephanie Rubinstein (Mesa County).

Judicial Excellence Award honorees all display innovation, efficiency, and dedication to the law and are highly respected members of the Colorado Bar.

Jeffrey Toobin, one of the country’s leading experts on the intersection of politics, media, and the law, will be the keynote speaker for the ninth annual dinner event. Toobin is CNN’s senior legal analyst as well as a staff writer for The New Yorker. He is perhaps best known for his comprehensive analysis of some of the nation’s highest profile cases in recent years, including the O.J. Simpson murder trial, Kenneth Starr’s investigation and the impeachment of President Clinton, Florida’s recount of the 2000 presidential election, and Martha Stewart’s insider trading trial. In 2000, Toobin received an Emmy for his coverage of the Elian Gonzales custody saga. Toobin is also an accomplished author; his most recent book is The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court.

The Judicial Excellence Dinner generates significant funding for the Judicial Education Fund held at the Denver Foundation. The Fund provides grants to justices, judges, magistrates and full time judicial department personnel to attend educational courses.

The event will be held at the Denver Marriott City Center, 1701 California Street, in Denver, Colorado. A cocktail reception starts at 6:00 pm with the dinner event beginning at 7:00 pm.

For more information about the event, purchasing tickets, or becoming a sponsor, click here.