“I wanted to be in a good place for the rest of my career, and I think Griffiths Law is a dynamic, forward looking firm that has lots of good work to do,” Leslie Hansen comments with certainty.
The recent addition of a lawyer with the stature of Leslie Hansen to the Griffiths Law roster has caused positive excitement throughout the firm. “It is a pleasure to receive a person into our firm with such a high profile in the Colorado legal community,” Suzanne Griffiths comments. “Leslie Hansen is going to be a prime mover as our firm goes forward.”
Hansen went on to explain her career shift; “Griffiths Law is one of the pre-eminent family law firms state wide. They have a deserved reputation of excellence in advocacy on behalf of their clients. By advocacy I mean that they offer a wide array of services — not just cookie cutter push, and more push for litigation. I don’t think that is appropriate, and certainly not the model for this firm.”
Hansen continues; “Personally, even though my background is in litigation, if I can help a family, particularly if there are children involved, to come to an amicable resolution that both sides can have meaningful time with their children then that’s a success story. It’s the same with property issues. If parties can decide how to divide up their assets, that is always best.”
You Wonder About the Children
“I am the mother of three boys and I know the love you have for your children is all encompassing. When you are going through a divorce, you wonder how the children are going to come out on the other end. I encourage parents to put the needs of their children first. Hostility, turmoil and repeated litigation causes harm to kids — I don’t think there is any doubt about that. I chose this area of law because of the good that family law practitioners can do for families and integral to that is the care and good that we can do for children.”
“In some cases, litigation is the only alternative. When clients do go to trial, they need a true advocate. For most clients, this is their first encounter with the legal system. It’s a tumultuous, upsetting experience. You must keep your client informed and calm. You must have empathy and listen carefully. Ratcheting up the situation is never helpful. And not every lawyer has the skill set to be a good advocate in court. This firm has a number of attorneys who are accomplished litigators. It’s a pressure situation that takes skill and experience. You have to be a counselor in every sense of the word.”
Hansen had some previous connections with Griffiths Law. “Yes, Emily Warren and I were District Attorneys together in the 18th judicial district. Emily and I have become friends over the last several years. Danielle Contos and I worked in private practice together at Willoughby and Associates and we have kept in touch. I knew what I was getting into, not just by reputation but I heard good things about how Griffiths was managed and how things worked — all the inside knowledge that you must have before you make a shift.”
Switching from a primarily male dominated firm to a traditionally female dominated firm feels different to Hansen. “However, I didn’t switch over for that reason. People ask me all the time; do I predominantly represent only men or only women? I like representing both.”
Griffiths and Community Work
One aspect of Griffiths Law that was attractive to Hansen was the emphasis on participating in the community. “It’s not just getting their name out there for business. They have causes that they care about and are invested in. I think that’s rewarding.” Hansen has served on the board for Voices of Victims, a victim advocacy group, since 2005 and plans to widen her volunteer work while at Griffiths.
In her private time, Hansen says; “I have a huge love of golf – both playing and watching.” She recently celebrated her birthday by attending the PGA Championship and plans to go to the British Open next summer. She is also a devoted Colorado Avalanche fan, political junky, and enjoys all things revolving around her three adult children.
Leslie graduated cum laude from the University of Colorado and received her Doctor of Law (JD) from Sturm College at the University of Denver. “I have wanted to be a lawyer ever since elementary school” laughs Hansen.
Leslie Hansen has a background as a prosecutor with extensive litigation experience and now uses those skills in Family Law. She was recognized by The Best Lawyers in America© in 2018-2019 for family law. She has written an article on Colorado being an Equitable Distribution state.