Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell LLP was organized in in 2003 and is devoted to solving problems that involve natural resources, energy, water, infrastructure, public projects, land use, development, environmental and tribal law. The glue that holds us together is our reputation for crafting innovative solutions to high-risk and seemingly intractable problems involving the interplay of many disciplines. Our attorneys have been counsel to a variety of public agencies, including municipal utilities, across the United States, represented public interest organizations in high-profile environmental litigation, served as government counsel at the highest levels of federal, state and local government, and represented a wide range of clients on cutting-edge compliance issues.
We have a national reputation for advising clients on some of the largest and most sophisticated public infrastructure projects, including water supply projects, major urban developments, energy facilities, transit systems, airports, highways, and transit-oriented development. Core to our Firm’s work is our environmental, energy, and natural resources practice, which assists clients with environmental cleanup, permitting, enforcement, and defense in matters under a wide array of state and federal environmental, energy, and conservation laws.
Our tribal practice, whose lawyers joined the firm in 2020, complements our work for local governments in their dealings with federal government regulators and funders. Our lawyers’ understanding of intergovernmental relations allows us to bring particular expertise and sensitivity to the needs of sovereign Indian nations.
In most law firms, one or two attorneys represent a client or work on a specific project. Our practice and the complexity of the projects on which we work require that our attorneys take a collaborative, team-based approach. All Firm lawyers are available to assist in any matter, depending upon the client’s needs. We think of all clients as Firm clients so that our clients can call upon any lawyer at any time for that lawyer’s particular expertise.
Legal and Strategic Advisors
Our clients often need not only legal, but also strategic advice. We provide both. We understand that problems do not come in neat packages so our attorneys work to craft innovative solutions to complex interdisciplinary matters that involve a mix of law, policy, economics, environmental sciences, and engineering. While we are attorneys, we understand other disciplines and the importance of integrating these fields into meaningful, practical, and actionable strategic advice.
Project Leadership and Management
Our clients’ projects and cases often require leadership and management of cross-functional teams. We understand the structure and requirements of large, complex projects and frequently take the leading role as project advisers in convening and supervising a team of attorneys, consultants, and other professionals with specialized expertise.
Private and Public Sector Clients
Private and public sector clients have dramatically different needs. Our private sector clients value our understanding of government processes and regulation so that we can translate their needs into meaningful government action. For the public sector, the Firm represents local, state, regional, and tribal government agencies and community organizations in high-visibility matters which place a premium on intelligent media relations, a command of critical, technical and factual issues, and sensitivity to political issues and the unique features of local or tribal law. Our strength in part lies in the ability of our attorneys to confront both the public policy issues and the narrow legal and technical questions that arise in controversial or complex undertakings.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell is committed to fostering diversity in our firm and, more generally, the legal profession. We strive to bring more varied perspectives, experiences, backgrounds, talents, and interests to the practice of law and the administration of justice . Our overall goal is to identify and work to eliminate barriers to the success and advancement of the diverse group of legal talent we intend to foster and grow. We believe that all members of the legal profession should have the opportunity to participate equally and fully in our profession without limitation. We recognize that, with a diverse firm, we can be more creative, effective, and just.
To achieve our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion goals, we have implemented various initiatives and policies, including:
- Recruitment and retention efforts focused on individuals who reflect diversity including, without limitation, race, color, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, religion, age, disability, and marital and parental status.
- Mentorship programs that provide support and guidance tailored to each individual’s career goals and needs.
- Internal committees that serve as a platform for employees to connect, share experiences, and advocate for themselves and their communities.
- Development of and support for a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee to recommend best practices, develop strategies and practices, and assist in promoting the firm’s overall diversity, equity and inclusion goals.
- Regular diversity, equity, and inclusion training and education for all employees to promote understanding and awareness of different perspectives and experiences.
- Benefits designed to support the diverse needs of all firm colleagues, including medical coverage for all families, wellness programs, and flexible work schedules.
We recognize that creating a truly diverse and inclusive workplace requires ongoing effort and commitment. We are dedicated to continually assessing and improving our practices to ensure that we are fostering an environment where everyone feels valued, respected, and empowered to succeed.
Pro Bono and Community Involvement
Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell believes that active involvement in the community makes us better lawyers and better members of our communities. The Firm considers meaningful community, civic and charitable leadership indispensable for our lawyers.
We are active members and leaders in our community. Our attorneys have served as Board members, pro bono legal counsel and informal advisors to a wide range of civic, community, religious, advocacy, charitable, municipal advisory and cultural organizations. These organizations are not only local institutions in the cities in which we have offices but often have regional, tribal, state, national and international reach. A representative description of our attorneys’ involvement is below. More detail about each attorney’s community involvement can be found on their individual biography pages.
Bar and Legal Organizations
Commitment to excellent legal practice includes supporting the legal community.
Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell is a long-time member and supporter of the Colorado Lawyers Committee, a nonpartisan consortium of Colorado law firms dedicated to creating and increasing opportunities for disadvantaged communities through pro bono legal advocacy, negotiation and litigation.
Our firm has been consistently recognized for high achievement in the Legal Aid Foundation of Colorado’s Associates Campaign, an annual fundraising initiative for Colorado Legal Services.
Our attorneys have been chosen to serve on state and federal judicial nominating commissions.
We hold leadership positions and are members in local and national bar associations, including sections of the American Bar Association, the Environmental Law Section of the Colorado Bar Association, the Access to Justice Committee of the Denver Bar Association, the Energy Bar Association, the Transportation and Transportation Security Law Section of the Federal Bar Association, the Transportation Section of the International Municipal Lawyers Association, the National Association of Bond Lawyers, National Native American Bar Association, and the National Association of Women Lawyers.
So much of our work is industry based that we believe that we have a professional obligation to contribute to industry organizations. We are leaders in industry-affiliated organizations, demonstrating the depth of our knowledge in the areas in which we practice.
Our involvement includes leadership positions with airport- and aviation-related organizations such as Airports Council International – North America, the American Association of Airport Executives, Airport Consultants Council, Florida Airports Council, the Aviation Council of Pennsylvania, the National Civil Aviation Review Commission, and thefederal government’s National Parks Overflights Advisory Group.
Our attorneys are active members of the American Public Transportation Association and the Metropolitan Railway Club of New York and the Association of Transportation Law Professionals.
Our lawyers are actively involved with organizations focused on infrastructure development more broadly, including the U.S. Infrastructure Law Forum, Next City, Design Build Institute of America, National Council of Public Private Partnerships Legal Institute
We have served on multiple National Academy of Sciences – Transportation Research Board committees, research review panels, and conference panels.
Our involvement is not limited to transportation-related organizations – we are also leaders at the Colorado Chapter of the National Brownfield Association.
Community, Educational and Civic Organizations
Our attorneys are leaders in their local communities.
Our lawyers have served in numerous Denver community organizations including as Board Chair of the Downtown Denver Partnership, a non-profit business organization that works to build an economically powerful Denver city center. Firm attorneys are frequently active on various City & County of Denver committees and task forces.
Multiple attorneys serve on boards for and are members of affiliate organizations for schools across the country, from early childhood education through higher education. Our attorneys also serve on the boards of major civic organizations including the Denver Foundation, the Denver Zoo, and multiple museums.
Our lawyers have served in leadership positions for their colleges and law schools, including as almni association leaders and members of the Board of Trustees.
Our lawyers play leadership roles, including as chairwoman, of the tribes of which they are enrolled members and on the Board of Regents of the California Tribal College.
Local Environmental and Advocacy Organizations
Many of our attorneys are passionate about environmental conservation and environmental advocacy. Our attorneys currently serve or have served on, and chaired, the boards of organizations including Colorado Conservation Voters, Conservation Colorado, Denver Botanic Gardens, GRID Alternatives Colorado, the Trust for Public Land, The Park People, San Francisco Heritage, Earthjustice, and Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado.