Staff

picture of Carrie Basas wearing a jean jacket

Carrie Griffin Basas

Executive Director

Carrie Griffin Basas (she/her) is Disability Law Colorado’s Executive Director. She most recently was the Director of the Governor’s Office of the Education Ombuds in Washington. Carrie is a former civil rights and labor law attorney. For many years, she was a law professor, specializing in disability rights, employment law, criminal justice, and ethics. She has taught at the University of North Carolina, Penn State University, Case Western Reserve University, the University of Tulsa, and Saint Joseph's College of Maine. In 2014, Carrie returned to graduate school to attain a MEd in Education Policy, Organizations, and Leadership from the University of Washington. Carrie is also a graduate of Swarthmore College (Honors B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Sociology/Anthropology) and Harvard Law School (Juris Doctorate degree).

Carrie identifies passionately with the work of Disability Law Colorado as a disabled woman, mother of a disabled middle schooler, and first-generation college graduate. Before entering public service, Carrie founded a nonprofit focused on creating a national network of emerging professionals with disabilities and facilitating more justice-focused workplaces. Carrie has served as an advisor to the National Association of Law Students with Disabilities, a Commissioner on the American Bar Association's Commission on Disability Rights, and a board member for nonprofits and foundations focused on human rights, gender justice, and youth success. As part of her desire to merge research and practice, she published a book of mentoring advice (“Lawyers, Lead On”) from the current generation of lawyers with disabilities to the next generation.  She has also published extensively on issues of accessibility, incarceration, health stigma, advocacy fatigue, and racial justice. cbasas@disabilitylawco.org

Meghan Baker, Facilities Team Leader Attorney

Meghan Baker, JD, MSW

Facilities Team Leader Attorney

Meghan Baker has been practicing law in Colorado since 2011.  Meghan completed her undergraduate education at the University of Texas at Austin where she majored in Plan II Honors.  Meghan graduated from the University of Houston with a JD and an MSW in May 2011, after which she accepted a position with the Colorado Office of the State Public Defender.  In that capacity, Meghan represented adults and youth charged with crimes, in El Paso and Arapahoe counties.  From 2015-2017, Ms. Baker worked as a guardian ad litem through The Law Offices of Meghan Baker LLC, advocating for the best interest of children involved in various types of court cases, in Denver County.  Having worked at the Protection and Advocacy organization in Texas during law school, Meghan is thrilled to return to serving people with disabilities and applying the knowledge and experience she has gained about systems in Colorado to bringing about lasting and systemic change for youth and adults in our state.  Meghan has a particular interest in issues related to juvenile justice and the child welfare system, as well as special education and mental health treatment in jails and prisons.  Meghan lives in Denver with her wife, two dogs, and a cat.  In her spare time, Meghan mentors young people and also enjoys yoga, the arts, and travel.  mbaker@disabilitylawco.org

picture of Esther Brieno

Esther Brieno

Operations Manager

Esther Brieno joined Disability Law Colorado as Operations Manager in December 2020.  She graduated from University of Phoenix with a Masters in Business Administration.  Her 30-year background in the telecommunications industry includes beginning as an Operator and advancing to an Operations Supervisor.  Her volunteer work includes mentoring and coaching young girls in softball and working BINGO sessions on Saturday nights.  She enjoys working with seniors and listening to their stories. ebrieno@disabilitylawco.org

Rebecca Brigham

Representative Payee Investigator

Rebecca Brigham graduated from Canisius College in 2015 with a Bachelor’s in Psychology and Criminal Justice, and SUNY Buffalo State in 2017 with a Master’s in Criminal Justice.  Rebecca has worked in diverse fields, including for a non-profit disability agency, Adult Protective Services, mental health, and a jail-based competency restoration program.  Rebecca is originally from New York, and joined Disability Law Colorado in 2019 to utilize her unique skills and passion for justice.  In her spare time, Rebecca enjoys hiking, aerial arts, and spending time with her husband and two cats. rbrigham@disabilitylawco.org

picture of Gina Brown

Gina Viola Brown

Legal Assistance Developer for the Elderly

Gina Viola Brown joined Disability Law Colorado as the Legal Assistance Developer for the Elderly in August 2021. Previously, Gina worked for the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution where she managed a number of complex projects, including policy development efforts and educational programs. Gina also coordinated a national law school competition and served as the managing editor of the ABA’s Dispute Resolution Magazine. Gina has a JD from Indiana University Maurer School of Law and an MPA from the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs. She is a black belt in tae kwon do and an avid gardener, baker, and reader. gbrown@disabilitylawco.org

Adriene Callahan

Accounting Manager

Adriene is a native of Denver and has extensive accounting, finance and entrepreneural experience. She began her accounting career at CH2M. Most recently Adriene was the Director of Taxation for a private equity firm that managed over 850 million in real estate investments and served as CFO and as Board Treasurer for Art Reach and Humanity in Unity. acallahan@disabilitylawco.org

 

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Bill DeSonier

Representative Payee Investigations Team Leader

Bill is a US Navy Operations Specialist veteran who has a Criminal Justice and Psychology degree from Columbia College.  Bill worked for the State of Colorado as a District Court Probation Officer and with the State of Texas in their Child Protective Services and Office of Inspector General departments.  He has also worked with the Arapahoe County Department of Human Services and with the Arapahoe County Attorney’s Office as a Welfare Benefits Fraud Investigator. bdesonier@disabilitylawco.org

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Anna French

Program Coordinator, Rights Advocate

Anna French’s background includes a bachelor’s degree in psychology, a graduate certificate in alternative dispute resolution from the University of Denver, and a background in small business and biotechnology.  She has been with Disability Law Colorado since 2002. Anna is an advocate in the Client Assistance and the Protection & Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security programs.  She advocates for the rights of clients who receive services from the Colorado Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, Colorado’s independent living centers, and the state’s employment networks. afrench@disabilitylawco.org

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Angela Garberding

Intake Team Lead & Advocate

Angie Garberding has been with Disability Law Colorado since September 1998. She is the Intake Team Lead & Advocate for the Special Education, Protection & Advocacy for Individual Rights, and Protection and Advocacy for Developmental Disabilities programs. Angie received her paralegal certificate from the Denver Paralegal Institute in 1997. She graduated in 1993 from Arapahoe Community College with an associate’s degree. Angie enjoys spending time with her family, birds and hiking Colorado 14ers.  agarberding@disabilitylawco.org

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Emily Harvey

Education Team Leader Attorney

Emily Harvey graduated from George Mason University School of Law in 2013. While in law school, she was a Research Editor on the Civil Rights Law Journal and attended two semesters as a visiting student at the University of Denver. She joined Disability Law Colorado as a legal fellow in March of 2014, was hired as a staff attorney in September of 2014, and promoted to Intake Team Leader in 2016.  After pursuing an opportunity to work as an attorney at the Office for Civil Rights with the U.S. Department of Education, Emily returned as DLC’s Education Team Leader in June of 2021. Emily is a co-founder and the board president of LIM359, a nonprofit that provides activities-based support for people with limb loss and limb difference in the Denver area. She also serves as LIM359’s youth camp director. Emily is the author and illustrator of a children’s book series called The Girl with the Robot Leg. In her free time, Emily enjoys walking, reading, and spending time with her husband, dog, and cats.  eharvey@disabilitylawco.org

picture of Saori Kimura

Saori Kimura

Deputy State Long-Term Care Ombudsman

Saori joined the State Long Term Care Ombudsman office in July 2021, and has worked within the long-term care network for most of her career including 22 years of assisting vulnerable adults.  Saori has experience in managing programs and providing leadership throughout her career. In addition, she has worked in governmental settings providing monitoring, implementing polices and managing contracts. Saori is passionate about the work of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program, is dedicated to the residents, and the statewide ombudsman team. She holds bachelor’s degree in Gerontology from Metropolitan State University of Denver. skimura@disabilitylawco.org

Photo of Mark Kollasch

Mark Kollasch

Access Team Attorney

Mark Kollasch joined Disability Law Colorado as an Access Team attorney in 2019. He graduated from Colorado State University in 2013 with an English Literature degree and from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2019 with certifications in Intellectual Property Law and Workplace Law. Mark’s past experience includes work with nonprofit groups and advocating for individual rights. He loves spending time with his wife and cheering on the Colorado Avalanche. mkollasch@disabilitylawco.org

Miriah Lawson

Administrative Assistant/Intake Specialist - Grand Junction

Miriah has been part of the Western Slope her entire life. She has over ten years of experience in customer service and previously worked as an intake specialist. Miriah also has previous experience in administration and book keeping, and a strong passion to help individuals with disabilities. In her spare time Miriah enjoys spending time with her husband, dog, friends and family.  mlawson@disabilitylawco.org

Photo of Jim McBride

Jim McBride

Director of Administrative Services

Jim McBride began working for Disability Law Colorado in 1987 and manages our accounting systems. Before coming to Disability Law Colorado, Jim worked in theatre and opera production management. Originally from Ohio, he came to Colorado in 1981 with his wife, Beth, to work at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. His hobbies include woodworking, gardening, and golf. jmcbride@disabilitylawco.org

Kelly McCullough

Access Team Leader Attorney

Kelly McCullough has been practicing law since 2010 when she graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a law degree and her Master's in Social Work.  She spent 10 years working as an attorney with the Colorado Public Defender's Office.  Prior to law school Kelly worked as a mental health social worker in Ohio.  She is excited to be joining Disability Law Colorado and leading the Access Team.  Kelly spends her free time woodworking and cooking. kmccullough@disabilitylawco.org

Leah McMahon

State Long-Term Care Ombudsman

Leah McMahon joined Disability Law Colorado as the State PACE Ombudsman in 2017 and was named Colorado State Long-Term Care Ombudsman in September 2019.  Previously, she worked in the Single Entry Point managing the care manager program for home community based services. Leah has also been a local Ombudsman at Denver Regional Council of Governments and supervised the assisted living team.  Early in her career, she served as a counselor for children and adolescents who live with trauma and severe mental illness. Leah has a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a master’s degree in Counseling from Regis University. lmcmahon@disabilitylawco.org

Sara Pielsticker

Sara Pielsticker

Staff Attorney

Sara Pielsticker joined Disability Law Colorado as a Staff Attorney in 2021. She graduated from the University of San Diego in 2016 with a degree in Education and Nonprofit Management and from Syracuse University in 2020 with a dual degree. She received her law degree from the Syracuse University College of Law with a curricular focus in Disability Law and Policy and a Master’s of Science in the Cultural Foundations of Education with a Certificate of Advanced Study in Disability Studies. Sara is originally from Colorado and has spent most of her life working for nonprofits that promote inclusion for people with disabilities. In her free time, she enjoys photography, jigsaw puzzles, and being outdoors as much as possible. spielsticker@disabilitylawco.org

Tim Postlewaite

Intake Specialist, Rights Advocate

Tim Postlewaite joined Disability Law Colorado in October 2021. He is a Colorado native and holds an English BA from Metropolitan State University of Denver. He also holds a paralegal certificate and is currently in the process of earning a Master of Public Administration from the University of Colorado Denver. Tim brings extensive disability rights advocacy experience to the Disability Law Colorado as he has participated in volunteer advocacy work for the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition, and he currently serves as a governor-appointed councilmember and is chairman of the State Rehabilitation Council. tpostlewaite@disabilitylawco.org

Samantha Riles

Administrative Assistant

Samantha Riles joined Disability Law of Colorado April 2022. She is a Colorado native who has 15 years of office management, administrative, and customer service experience. Sam enjoys connecting with local communities by participating in several nonprofit organizations from the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation’s Walk for the Cure, Mile High United Way’s Day of Caring and the Lupus Foundation. She believes there is no obstacle too big to overcome and takes pride in her ability to solve any challenge that may arise. Sam enjoys cooking, baking, writing poetry, riding horses, traveling and spending time with her son and daughter. sriles@disabilitylawco.org

picture of Mike Robbins

Mike Robbins

Director of Development

Mike Robbins joined Disability Law Colorado as Director of Development in April 2017. In his role, Mike directs resource development efforts including the identification, cultivation and stewardship of fundraising to support DLC programs and services. Additionally, he leads the marketing and communications initiatives for the organization. Prior to joining Disability Law Colorado, Mike worked at Mental Health Colorado in development and communications and Warren Village in public relations and marketing. What drives and motivates Mike is his passion for cause-driven storytelling, social justice, disability rights, mental health, and issues of poverty and homelessness. Mike received his bachelor's degree in public relations and marketing from Kansas State University, is a certified Youth Mental Health First Aid trainer, and a 2019 graduate of University of Denver's Institute for Leaders in Development. mrobbins@disabilitylawco.org

picture of Olivia Thomas

Olivia Thomas

Representative Payee Investigator

Olivia Thomas graduated from the University of Denver in 2019 with a Bachelor’s degree in Criminology. Olivia is a former Research Assistant in the discipline of historical discrimination. She has also amassed a plethora of skills, including analyzing financial documents for fraud and working with children who have neurodevelopmental disabilities. Olivia was born and raised in Colorado. Outside of work, her passions include cooking, painting, and volunteering in the community. othomas@disabilitylawco.org

Erica Voisine

Community Outreach Advocate, VOTE Program Coordinator

Erica joined Disability Law Colorado in April of 2020.  She graduated from Elmira College in Elmira, NY in 2003, obtaining a Bachelor of Arts degree.  She has spent her professional life working for non-profit organizations that promote the safety and well-being of people with disabilities.  Originally from Maine, Erica moved to Denver in 2012.  She is involved in early childhood education, serving on the Colorado Interagency Coordinating Council, and on the Early Childhood Leadership Commission’s Program Quality and Alignment Subcommittee.  In her free time, Erica shares her time as a Girl Scout troop leader.  She also enjoys reading, hiking, art, and spending time with her family. evoisine@disabilitylawco.org