Polansky Law Firm, Top Rated Criminal Defense Firm in Colorado
 
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Lisa Polansky is a former Deputy Public Defender in Los Angeles County and JAG officer for the United States Army who has practiced criminal and juvenile defense since 1990.  After attending law school at Pepperdine University, School of Law, Ms. Polansky practiced with seasoned criminal defense attorneys for about three years and mentored incarcerated youth through the Los Angeles County Bar Association until Ms. Polansky recognized that she wanted to be in the trenches every day fighting on behalf of the disenfranchised.  Ms. Polansky then went to the Los Angeles Public Defender’s Office where she handled hundreds of cases for about seven years.  Thereafter, Ms. Polansky acted as a supervisor with the Public Defender and enjoyed training new lawyers for some time before she moved to Colorado in 2000.  Once in Colorado, she signed on to teach the intersession trial advocacy class at the University of Colorado, School of Law and also continued to mentor “youth at risk” in her community.

Ms. Polansky served in the military as a commissioned officer and Deputy Judge Advocate after September 11, 2001 and left with an Honorable Discharge in 2004 to continue with her own private practice in Colorado, taking on many appointed cases in both state and federal courts. In 2010, she went to Nepal as an International Legal Fellow where she assisted in the training and evaluation of Nepali advocates as they started a public defender organization in their post-conflict country. Upon her return to the United States, Ms. Polansky began to develop and form the Center for Juvenile Justice, a non-profit organization providing legal representation to indigent youth in the delinquency courts and education for youth and the community on issues relevant to adolescent development, delinquency prevention and the juvenile justice system. After running the Center for several years, Ms. Polansky is again in private practice in Colorado.

EDUCATION:

  • Officer Basic Course, JAG Corps, United States Army, April 2003
    Commandant’s List (Graduated with Honors)
  • Pepperdine University, School of Law, J.D., May 1990
  • State University of New York at Albany, B.A., May 1987
    (Dual Major: Criminal Justice and Sociology)

BAR ADMISSIONS:

  • United States District Court, District of Colorado, December 2000
  • Colorado State Bar, March 2000
  • United States District Court, Central District of California, December 1990
  • California State Bar, December 1990

PUBLICATIONS:

EXPERIENCE:

2000-present FOUNDING PARTNER
Polansky Law Firm
Practice consists solely of criminal defense cases in state and federal courts, including post-conviction habeas corpus proceedings and appeals.
2013-present FACULTY, TRIAL SKILLS AND ADVANCED ADVOCACY PROGRAMS
National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA)
Provide classroom instruction and experiential training on trial skills and advocacy.
2001-present FACULTY, INTERSESSION TRIAL ADVOCACY COURSE
University of Colorado at Boulder, School of Law
Conduct clinical exercises with law students in mock cases, both civil and criminal.  Critique students in their performances and offer input for improvement of trial advocacy skills.  Educate on practical techniques for presentation of trials.
2010-2015 FOUNDING EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, FACULTY
Center for Juvenile Justice
Founded this non-profit organization with a mission to provide free and low cost holistic client-centered legal services to indigent youth charged in delinquency courts.  Designed and delivered curriculum in juvenile defense to law students utilizing an experiential approach.  Supervised handling of actual live client cases; managed community outreach and networking efforts.  Developed and implemented JLWOP/Innocence Project to represent youth serving life imprisonment terms.
2010 KATHRYN WADIA LEGAL FELLOW
International Legal Foundation-Nepal Office
Selected as a Legal Fellow to serve in Nepal for three months in Kathmandu; mentored national lawyers in criminal defense representation for indigent clients, both adult and juvenile.  In this role, acted as a supervisor and assisted the advocates in their handling of criminal cases at pre-trial, trial and appellate level; organized and presented continuing legal education sessions on various topics for the advocates and participated in meetings with other NGOs, government officials and donor countries.
2002-2004 OFFICER, JUDGE ADVOCATE GENERAL’S CORPS
1LT, 87th LSO, United States Army Reserve
Performed legal assistance tasks for deploying soldiers as a reservist and served on active duty as Trial Counsel for 1st Armored Division, United States Army Europe in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (Germany).  Advised Commanders on issues of military justice and prosecuted courts-martial.  Coordinated with law enforcement in the investigation of crimes providing legal guidance.
1993-2000 DEPUTY PUBLIC DEFENDER III
Office of the Los Angeles County Public Defender
Successfully completed a variety of rigorous training assignments and tried numerous juvenile bench trials and jury trials in both misdemeanor and felony cases.  Last assignment was as a Deputy in Charge.  Engaged in supervision of attorneys, conducted personnel evaluations and presentation of staff training sessions.

AFFILIATIONS:

  • CJA (Criminal Justice Act) Panel of Attorneys (Colorado)
  • Alternate Defense Counsel (ADC) Panel of Attorneys (Colorado)
  • National Association for Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • California Attorneys for Criminal Justice
  • Los Angeles Criminal Courts Bar Association
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
  • California Public Defender’s Association
  • Colorado Criminal Defense Bar Association
  • Colorado Bar Association
  • Boulder County Bar Association

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