Colorado University Law School, J.D., Certificate in Taxation (2020)
City University of New York – Brooklyn College, B.A., Economics (2016)
The United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
The Ute Indian Tribal Court
Michelle’s practice focuses primarily on civil litigation on behalf of Tribes and tribal entities. She has drafted and argued pleadings and papers in Federal, tribal, and state courts including complaints, answers, motions to intervene, motions to dismiss, responses, replies, and written discovery requests. The legal issues Michelle encounters include sovereign immunity of tribes, tribal officers, and tribal businesses, statutes of limitation defenses, the Federal Tort Claims Act, torts, legal malpractice, fraud, breach of contract, breach of trust by the U.S. trustee, state law breach of trust, and civil rights litigation under 42 U.S.C. 1981, 1982, 1983, 1985 and the United States Constitution. Michelle has pro hac vice experience in various courts including federal district courts and Utah state courts.
Michelle has also conducted general counsel work on behalf of Tribes and tribal entities, including drafting tribal laws, ordinances, and resolutions, and drafting a high volume of legal memoranda on various issues arising under the laws and regulations of the federal government, tribal governments, and states. In 2023, Michelle led the purchase of two commercial buildings with hard money financing through tribal limited liability companies to a successful close. At Patterson Earnhart Real Bird & Wilson LLP, Michelle enjoys the challenge of the wide array of modern and historical issues that arise in the context of vigorously prosecuting on behalf of or defending our clients and fighting for their sovereignty and economic development.
Michelle obtained her BA in Economics from the City University of New York in 2016 and graduated from the University of Colorado Law School in 2020. Michelle was born and raised in northeastern Vermont and lives in Colorado with her dog.