X

 

Welcome to Metro Volunteer Lawyers


Co-sponsored by the following Bar Associations: Adams/Broomfield, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas/Elbert, and First Judicial District

MVL’s mission is “to bridge the gap in access to justice by coordinating the provision of pro bono legal services by volunteer lawyers within the Denver Metro Area to people who could not otherwise afford legal services for their civil legal issues.”

DONATE"I Need Help"Volunteer


Contact

 

Scroll

Welcome to Metro Volunteer Lawyers

Co-sponsored by the following Bar Associations: Adams/Broomfield, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas/Elbert, and First Judicial District

MVL’s mission is “to bridge the gap in access to justice by coordinating the provision of pro bono legal services by volunteer lawyers within the Denver Metro Area to people who could not otherwise afford legal services for their civil legal issues.”

DONATE"I Need Help"Volunteer


Contact

 

"I Need Help"

Anyone seeking legal assistance or acceptance into any of our programs must call Colorado Legal Services (CLS) at 303-837-1313 to complete an intake interview. A CLS staff member will conduct an interview with you to determine your financially eligibility for free or low-fee legal services, and the nature of your legal issue. CLS may then refer your case to MVL. If referred to our organization, we will contact you to inform you if we can provide any assistance. If you first contact Metro Volunteer Lawyers directly you will be redirected to Colorado Legal Services. MVL will not respond to requests for legal assistance by those not yet accepted into one of our programs. MVL’s service area includes Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas, Elbert, Gilpin, and Jefferson county. Unfortunately, we are not able to help everyone who seeks legal assistance. This could be for various reasons, including but limited to the following:
  • The demand for our help is huge, and we simply cannot help everyone who applies. We assist eligible clients referred to MVL on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Your income and resources may exceed our financial eligibility guidelines. A change in your financial situation could render you ineligible even if you were eligible when you first applied.
  • Your legal issue may not fall under the types of cases that we accept.
  • We may have a conflict of interest.
  • Finally, despite our best efforts, we may not be able to find a lawyer to take your case. Although strongly encouraged, lawyers are not obligated to volunteer their time and services.
Have you already contacted CLS, and MVL was not able to help you? Try visiting our Resources page for other possible options.

History

Metro Volunteer Lawyers (MVL), formerly the Thursday Night Bar, is the pro bono program of the Denver Bar Association, providing civil legal services to those in need in Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas, Elbert, Gilpin, and Jefferson counties. MVL serves people who are living at or below 125% (free legal services) to 150% (low-fee legal services) of federal poverty guidelines. Over 12% of Colorado’s population is financially eligible (earn less than 125% of poverty level) for free legal services from CLS or MVL. Here's a summary from the U.S. Census about poverty in MVL’s service area as of 2012: Douglas County: 4.0%; Broomfield County: 6.1%; Elbert County: 6.0%; Gilpin County: 10.3%; Jefferson County: 8.6%; Arapahoe County: 11.8%; Adams County: 14.2%; Denver County: 18.9%.

Frequently our volunteers identify and resolve legal issues without going to court, or can resolve court cases more efficiently and fairly than if our clients represented themselves. Providing legal services helps stabilize families, saves taxpayers money, reduces the number of cases clogging the courts, and helps people move towards self-sufficiency and full participation in society.

Community Collaboration MVL works with the Colorado Bar Association's Pro Bono Appellate program to assist financially-eligible clients with appellate matters; and, the Colorado and Denver Bar Associations' Colorado Lawyers for Colorado Veterans programs to assist financially-eligible Veterans who are identified at clinical programs as needing civil legal representation; and The Colorado Poverty Law Project (CPLP). CPLP is a non-profit organization with the mission to assemble and coordinate volunteer attorneys to participate in a monthly pro bono legal clinic at the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless (CCH). CPLP provides resources to enable volunteers, at their discretion, to provide a range of services to attendees, including answering on-the-spot questions, providing referrals, and, if appropriate, providing limited representation.

Staff

Metro Volunteer Lawyers has three attorneys on staff: the Director, the Family Law Court Program Coordinator, and the Rovira Scholar. MVL also has a Legal Services Coordinator, a Program Assistant, and multiple student interns.

Toni-Anne Dasent, Director

Sahar P. Safi, FLCP Coordinator

Robin Van Atta, Legal Services Coordinator

To Be Announced, Rovira Scholar

Enas Saleh, Coordinator

Virginia McClerkin, Program Assistant

Board

Metro Volunteer Lawyers’ Board oversees the organization’s operations. The Board is comprised of eighteen volunteer attorney members from the Denver Bar Association, Douglas/Elbert Bar Association, Adams/Broomfield Bar Association, Arapahoe Bar Association, and First Judicial District Bar Association. The Board is as follows:

Designees from the Denver Bar Association:

Designees from the Douglas/Elbert Bar Association

Designees from the Adams/Broomfield Bar Association

Designees from the Arapahoe County Bar Association

Designees from the First Judicial District Bar Association


Andrew “Andy” Hart, Board President; Andy got involved with Metro Volunteer Lawyers after obtaining his Juris Doctorate from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2007. Andy was then employed with Metro Volunteers Lawyers as the Family Law Court Program Coordinator for two years before going off into private practice. He has served on the Board of Directors since 2012. In his spare time, Andy spends time with his family exploring Colorado and all it has to offer - hiking, backpacking, cycling, and skiing all over the state. When not engaged in outdoor pursuits, Andy enjoys spending time with friends, family, a good book, and rabidly cheering on the University of Oregon Ducks. Andy remains grateful for the opportunity to have worked for an organization that helps so many people who lack the resources to hire an attorney, and continues to support their efforts as a volunteer. At a young age, he learned that the practice of law is an honorable profession full of good, dedicated people. Andy is currently an associate at the family law firm of Pelegrin & Radeff, P.C. (http://prfalaw.com/) in Lakewood.

Board Members

Stephen Cook
Smith & Cook LLC
8441 W. Bowles Ave, Ste 210
Littleton, CO 80123
www.smithandcook.com.


Loren M. Brown
is a shareholder with Ciancio Ciancio Brown P.C., a litigation law firm serving clients in the Denver metro area, and along the front range, and surrounding areas of Colorado. Loren started his career as a law clerk Gene and Cyndy Ciancio while in law school in 2001, and remained with the firm after becoming a licensed attorney in 2003. Loren attended the University of Denver, College of Law, and in 2003 was a member of the school's American Association for Justice trial team that won a national championship.

Loren has a statewide practice, focused on litigation, including wrongful death and personal injury, criminal defense, probate litigation, and civil/commercial litigation. Loren also handles liquor license matters, including applications for new licenses, and defense of clients related to liquor license violations.

Loren also served as President of the Colorado Bar Association, 2015-2016.  In addition to practicing law, Loren is passionate about involvement in the bar association, helping shape the future of the bar and profession.
Loren M. Brown
Ciancio Ciancio Brown, P.C.
lorenbrown@colo-law.com

Kyle W. Brenton is an attorney at the law firm of Davis Graham & Stubbs, LLP.  Mr. Brenton is a litigator specializing in appeals and complex commercial litigation.  He has extensive experience in appellate litigation in state and federal courts in Colorado and across the country.  In addition to his professional work, Mr. Brenton serves as the Co-Chair of the Associate's Advisory Board of the Legal Aid Foundation and on the Screening Committee for the Colorado Bar Association's Pro Bono Appeals program.


Jamie L. Cage is a shareholder with Ciancio Ciancio Brown, P.C. Jamie has been with CCB since her admission to the Colorado Bar. Jamie attended Colorado State University to obtain her Bachelor of Arts degree in Technical Journalism. Thereafter, Jamie attended the University of North Dakota School of Law to obtain her Juris Doctor. Jamie focuses her practice in the area of family law, including divorces and legal separations, allocation of parental responsibility actions, child support modifications, adoptions, paternity actions, and protection orders.

 

 Gregory Deemer, JD MBA got involved with MVL after he was admitted to the bar by looking for ways to help give back to the community. 
Attorney at Law
gdeemer@deemer-law.com
Mobile (303) 525-2789
Office (303) 386-7288
Licensed in CO, DC, MO, MT, ND, NE, and WY
JD: Appalachian School of Law 
LLM (tax): University of Denver (currently attending)
Area of Practice: Business and Estate Planning

 

Rocco Dodson Dodson & Associates, P.C.

Rocco Dodson is a commercial litigation attorney with his firm, Dodson and Associates, P.C. A strong believer in equal access to justice, without regard to ability to pay, he has served as a volunteer attorney for Metro Volunteer Lawyers since he first passed the Colorado Bar in 1981, and was the Pro Bono Coordinator for the Denver firm of Fairfield and Woods, P. C., before joining the MVL Board. He is also Vice President and a Member of the Board of Directors of Peruvian Hearts, a nonprofit organization that supports the education, empowerment and leadership training of young women in Peru. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Colorado Nonprofit Loan Fund, and was President and Chairman of the Board from 2001 – 2009. Rocco has also been an active member of the Evergreen Colorado Rotary Club since 2001 and served on the Board of Directors of AfricAid, an organization that helps Tanzanian girls receive secondary level education, until 2016.

Andrew Goertzel -I have a 9 year old son, I am married, I have two basset hounds named Tom and Jerry. I have lived in Denver since 1991. I was a member of the MVL Board back in like 2000 probably until 2004 and then took about a 4 year hiatus. In my spare time I enjoy riding bicycles and playing sports with my son. Practice areas: Family law, Child custody, Divorce, Traffic violations, Driving while intoxicated and Personal injury Admitted Colorado, 1995; U.S. District Court, District of Colorado, 1998 Education University of Denver, J.D., 1995; State University of New York at Binghamton, B.A., 1991 Website: www.pgapc.com


Teresa Locke has successfully represented clients through a broad array of legal challenges for more than 20 years. Recently, she has focused her practice on counseling clients in the healthcare industry. Clients recognize Ms. Locke’s commitment to finding favorable and creative solutions to their legal needs . Throughout much of her career, Ms. Locke has used her trial and appellate experience to represent entities and individuals embroiled in disputes, ranging from domestic relations to commercial litigation. She has handled highly contentious family law matters as well as multi‐million dollar cases involving resort condominium redevelopment projects, construction defects, family partnership disputes, and breach of contract actions.


Charles Mao
Faegre Baker Daniels
charles.mao@FaegreBD.com 3200 Wells Fargo Center, 1700 Lincoln Street, Denver, Colorado 80203
Charles Mao is a real estate lawyer who advises on commercial transactions, including acquisition, development, land use, leasing, and financing and management. Charles' previous experience as a real estate broker in Southern California, representing investors both domestic and abroad, provides a solid understanding of how to best support each client's financial and real estate needs. Charles' previous brokerage experience includes representing and consulting with clients from the Greater China Region seeking to invest and/or relocate in the U.S.

Ric Morgon has long been deeply involved in Access to Justice programs, and was the founding co-chair of the 18th Judicial District’s Access to Justice Committee. Over the past dozen years, he developed and supported Pro Se Clinics and Domestic Violence programs in four nearby counties, and his practice focuses on assisting Pro Se litigants and Pro Bono clients in a wide range of legal issues.

In 2013, he founded the Virtual Pro Se Clinic (VPC) program, which is a public-private collaboration delivering free monthly legal clinics to local libraries in 26 Colorado Counties, by computer link. The program provides self-represented litigants with a one-on-one discussion with a knowledgeable volunteer attorney, on any civil issue. In October, 2016 the VPC program delivered its’ 500th free monthly legal clinic since stand-up in 2013. In 2011, he coordinated efforts to set up a new Veterans Treatment Court in the 18th Judicial District, which was funded, established, and had its first graduates in 2015. Ric also provides Pro Bono legal counsel for various local non-profit organizations, including farmers & ranchers organizations, veterans groups, municipal districts, local citizen's groups, and governmental bodies.

Ric retired from the US Navy in 1999. Since 1999, Ric volunteers as the Elbert County Veterans Services Officer, helping Elbert County’s 3200 veterans and their families get the VA benefits they deserve. He also represents veterans across Colorado in their appeals against the VA, including before the US Court of Appeals of Veteran's Claims. He and his wife operate a small dairy goat farm in rural Elbert County, and they have two grown sons, and three grand-daughters. In addition to his other interests, he lectures on genealogy DNA testing & analysis; on Colorado's Indian Wars; and is a certified firearms instructor, an avid carpenter, beekeeper, and history student.   

 Jon Nicholls
Jon S. Nicholls, Esq.
Nicholls & Associates, P.C.
836 Saint Paul Street
Denver, CO  80206
303-329-9700
jon.nicholls@nichollslaw.com


Jerremy Ramp is a partner with the firm Lass Moses & Ramp LLC, where his practice focuses on family law. Jerremy grew up in Indiana but has been in Denver since graduating from Notre Dame Law School in 2003. Jerremy serves on the board of Metro Volunteer Lawyers, the Family Law Section Executive Council, and the Family Law Section Legislative Committee. He has been named as a Colorado Super Lawyer, 5280 Top Lawyers and to the Best Lawyers in America. After college, Jerremy spent a fascinating and rewarding year in Jerusalem doing archaeological work and volunteering at a hospital, and he spent his second year of law school in London studying international law. In his free time, Jerremy enjoys house projects, playing in the mountains, and most of all, tries—often unsuccessfully—to keep up with his three little kids.


Tausha Riley is the founder of Signature Law Firm, a litigation firm that focuses on Family Law, Criminal Defense, Taxation, and Bankruptcy. Tausha began her career over fifteen years ago in accounting and finance, working mainly in large publicly traded companies. In addition to her corporate work, Tausha has been involved in multiple startups in the real estate, hospitality, and non-profit industries. She obtained her B.S. in Accounting from Barry University and Master of Accounting from Nova Southeastern University. Tausha then decided to achieve her original goal of becoming a lawyer and received her J.D. from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and her LL.M. in Taxation from the University of Denver. While in school, Tausha helped clients through the Denver Low Income Taxpayer Clinic as well as the Mediation Clinic. She deeply enjoyed giving back to the community, which inspired her to participate with Metro Volunteer Lawyers. In her spare time (if there is such a thing) she enjoys spending time with family and cooking.  You can reach Tausha at triley@thesignaturelawfirm.com. www.thesignaturelawfirm.com


Tanya Akins brings a unique perspective to Sherr Puttmann Akins Lamb PC through her extensive background as a Master of Social Work (MSW). Prior to graduating cum laude from DePaul University College of Law, Tanya spent eight years as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker conducting custody evaluations and providing courtroom testimony of her custody findings and recommendations. Her experience gives her special insight into cases involving mental health and substance abuse issues, as well as complex dependency and neglect actions. Tanya recently completed her first Appeal and successfully overturned the District Court’s decision. Tanya is a founding shareholder of the firm and is the Chief Financial Officer. She is well versed in managing intricate financial issues in high asset cases and her broad perspective is invaluable in the often-complex world of family law.

 

Denver Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Liaison


Courtney Butler is a graduate of the University of Denver, Sturm College of Law, where she graduated first in her class. After law school, Ms. Butler clerked for the Colorado Court of Appeals and the Vermont Environmental Court. She then spent two years working for a private Vermont law firm representing clients in environmental and land use matters before returning to Colorado, her native state. Ms. Butler is currently an Associate Attorney at the Joseph Law Firm, PC, a boutique immigration law firm. Ms. Butler represents clients in all immigration matters, including removal defense, family immigration, asylum, and corporate immigration.Ms. Butler is a member of the Executive Council of the Young Lawyers Division of the Denver Bar Association, and she is currently the liaison between the DBA YLD and Metro Volunteer Lawyers. In her free time, Ms. Butler enjoys international travel, long distance running, ultimate Frisbee, camping, hiking, snowboarding, and photography.