Top Women: Mikaela Rivera

It’s rare for someone to have the opportunity to bring their career full circle, but Mikaela Rivera has just that.

Rivera worked on a landmark eminent domain case 10 years ago and now is involved in another major cases that could seal a loophole in Colorado case law that the first created.

While still a new associate at Otten Johnson Robinson Neff + Ragonetti, Rivera had the opportunity to gain plenty of litigation experience in land use and property disputes. Town of Telluride v. San Miguel Valley Corporation brought in her into a case that ultimately went to the Colorado Supreme Court to decide whether the Town of Telluride could seize property from a landowner outside its borders in San Miguel County in order to prevent future development.

As for Rivera’s work, she was able to argue for a change of venue away from the protests of Telluride residents, which enabled the landowner to turn a $26 million settlement into a $50 million ruling in exchange for the land. The Supreme Court said Telluride’s actions were legal and made the case one of the biggest issues in the world of eminent domain law.

To read this story and other complete articles featured in the May 7, 2017 print edition of Law Week Colorado, copies are available for purchase online.