FGMC'S Latest News & Updates
MARCH 2018
The Importance of Humility in Legal Representation
At this point in my life and career, there are any number of things that I trust more than a person who suggests that his or her life has been easy, perfect, or without unexpected complications. Allow me to name a few: requests for money from a Nigerian prince; George R.R. Martin's promise that he will finish Winds of Winter; gas station sushi; someone who says (s)he understands the series finale of LOST; and any attorney's promise that he "will be brief.” The list goes on, but if I am certain of anything it is that life is unpredictable, and everyone makes mistakes and encounters hardship along the way. Good intentions and bad outcomes are not mutually exclusive, despite my panglossian view that perhaps they should be.

There are many lessons to be gleaned through the process of making mistakes, and it is through these experiences that we grow as individuals and develop important traits like fortitude and vulnerability. That said, they may also come at a price. As a criminal defense attorney, I often enter my clients’ otherwise accomplished and well-executed lives at a time when they feel the very heavy burden that accompanies having made a mistake or being wrongfully accused of the same. My first meeting with a new client is typically spent listening, learning, and easing the client into what will be, for at least some period of time, an uncomfortable yet inevitable “new normal” – one saturated with scrutiny, shame, heartache and fear. As I listen to my clients’ stories, I am always reminded of the delicate nature of my standing in the world at any given moment in time. As John Bradford said, “there but for the grace of God (go I).” While swiftly and thoroughly addressing my client’s legal problem is of paramount importance, it is no less important that they walk away from my office with the unquestionable understanding that I am on their team, there is no judgment, and it is my privilege to stand next to them as they navigate their bumpy road.

It is this precept – that we as attorneys have the high honor of making a living by helping people in times of need – that defines the professionals at Foster Graham Milstein & Calisher, LLP and separates us from our peers. Too often, attorneys can exude entitlement and ego over their clients and cases. Many put themselves first and disregard the fact that representation of a client is a sacred trust in which the client’s interest, and only the client’s interest, comes first. Practicing with humility is a critical part of engendering the type of dialogue and sharing of ideas necessary to arrive at a desired result, and it is with that in mind that we seek to serve our clients’ needs. Rest assured, the attorneys at this firm are some of the most confident, fearless, and competent in the profession. Humility and weakness are not one in the same and should not be confused. Rather, we employ the best attorneys in the business who understand they are just as valuable -- and just as flawed -- as those they have the privilege to serve. As a partner at this firm, I thank you for your business. It is our pleasure and privilege to represent each and every one of you who walks through our door.

FGMC Welcomes Partner John Chanin to the Firm

John is a seasoned trial attorney with extensive experience in complex  business litigation , financial fraud, government investigations, and white-collar defense. John’s practice substantially reinforces FGMC’s ability to serve its clients on a comprehensive range of matters, and particularly with respect to the litigation of complex business issues.

John is ranked in Chambers USA in Litigation: While Collar Crime & Government Investigations and he is listed in Colorado Super Lawyers in Business Litigation and White Collar Defense. He is past-president of the Faculty of Federal Advocates.

FGMC Attorneys Named to 2018 Super Lawyers

Congratulations to our 2018 Super Lawyer and Rising Star award recipients Lara Baker , Dan Calisher , David Canter , John Chanin , Danny Foster , Gary Lozow , Kari Jones Dulin , Lindsay Richardson and Katie Roush . This prestigious group uphold and exceed the FGMC standards of providing clients with excellent service, superior experience in their field, and results that go beyond client expectations. Less than three percent of all lawyers in Colorado earn this distinction.

Keirstin Beck named to Denver Business Journal's Top Women in Energy

We are very proud to announce that our Special Counsel, Keirstin Beck, has been named to the prestigious list of Top Women in Energy from the Denver Business Journal. This is Keirstin’s second year winning the award, to include last year in 2017.

Each year, the DBJ honors women across several industries inside the energy world, including exploration, renewable, finance, manufacturing, and law. Keirsten will be honored, among the other winners, at a reception on April 25 at the History Colorado Center. Also, she will be profiled in a special DBJ publication on April 20.

FGMC Honored by the Denver Jewish Day School

Foster Graham Milstein & Calisher LLP was honored at the Denver Jewish Day School annual dinner. The partners were presented with the Neshamah Yeteirah award (translated as good deed/good soul) for all of the volunteer work they have provided the School over the past 10 years. The event was held at the Grand Hyatt on March 8 th .
FGMC Hosting Fourth Annual High School Boot Camp Event

If you have not registered your child or grandchild for FGMC’s fourth annual ‘Get Ready for High School/College Boot Camp’, time is running out. We are almost completely full for our free event, so sign up ASAP!

FGMC Land Use Win in Larimer County

David Foster , Michelle Berger , and Raul Abad successfully represented Coulson Excavating in a Use by Special Review (“USR”) Application in Larimer County. The USR Application allows the Coulsons to mine approximately 133 acres of their privately owned land along the Big Thompson River for sand and gravel. The FGMC team presented at both the Planning Commission and Board of County Commissioner public hearings. The USR Application was met with opposition from nearby residents, making the public hearings particularly important, eventful, and controversial. FGMC and the Coulsons worked hard to mitigate the neighbors’ concerns while also affirming to the Planning Commission and the Board of County Commissioners that the Coulson’s USR Application met the specifications required for approval. The Board of County Commissioners approved the Coulson’s USR Application at its public hearing on February 26, 2018.


I started a blog. Wait, don’t leave! This article is not actually about trying to drum up site visitors other than my husband and parents.

Let me explain. I’ll start at the beginning. I’m on Colorado Boulevard a lot. It’s crowded, ugly, there are too many lights, and people treat the left-turn arrows as mere suggestions rather than enforceable traffic directives. It’s utterly unsuited to pedestrians. But despite all that, I sort of love Colorado Boulevard. This street has everything you could ever need: grocery stores, gas stations and pharmacies, yes, but also gems like shoe repair, watch repair, a Tae-Bo studio, a pet chiropractor (true), delicious Lebanese food, and a store dedicated solely to selling medical scrubs. Find me another street in Denver that possesses this diversity, this breadth.


In December we examined many aspects of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “Act”), and in particular those portions of the Act that we expected many of our clients, colleagues and friends to be most interested in. One aspect of the legislation that garnered a lot of attention then and now concerns a new business deduction available to individuals with “qualified business income” from partnerships, limited liability companies, S corporations, and sole proprietorships. In our December summary of the Act, prepared just before the President actually signed the new legislation, we provided only an overview of this new and particularly complicated deduction. We promised a more thorough analysis of this deduction after having additional time to examine its particulars and are happy to provide this analysis now.

Click here to read the full article.

Just try it. Get into your car, start it and just drive. The only caveat…do not touch your cell phone, not even once, until you have reached your destination and you have safely parked your car. At what point in your drive do you break into a cold sweat? You look at it. Did I just hear the “ping” of a text message? Did I just get an e-mail? I cannot wait. The ultimate challenge, do not check that phone at a stop light. That is the true test. I am asking myself when my cell phone became an appendage. Why do I get anxious when I cannot check it? The one time when I need my eyes totally focused on something other than my phone…is when I am driving. I am guilty of it. We all do it. Every time I drive I remind myself of what I do for a living and if I touch my phone I am contributing to what has literally become a very dangerous epidemic.
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