karen steinhauser

Karen Steinhauser

Adjunct Faculty


Criminal Procedure, Evidence, Trial Advocacy

Professional Biography

Karen Steinhauser is a Judge, a trial lawyer, Adjunct Law School Professor and NITA Instructor.  She has practiced law for 39 years and has tried more than 250 jury trials. She has been recognized as a Super Lawyer from 2012-2019.  Karen has taught Evidence and Trial Advocacy as well as other substantive classes at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law for 29 years, and was the traveling mock trial coach for 17 years, leading the team to two National Championships.  She has been a faculty member for NITA for 29 years, serving as a Program Director for custom programs such as Trial Skills Programs, Deposition Programs, Fact Finding Programs and Mediation Programs, and has also served as Co-Program Director for NITA’s flagship National Trial Skills Program. 

Karen began her legal career in 1981 as a prosecutor for the Denver District Attorney’s Office, where she stayed for 20 years.  She was appointed to a full-time faculty position for six years, and then went into private practice focusing on civil trial work, including employment law, professional liability defense and personal injury.  She later expanded her practice to include domestic relations law and criminal defense.  Karen is currently owner of The Law Office of Karen Steinhauser, LLC, focusing exclusively on criminal defense for juveniles and adults. She was appointed as a relief judge for Aurora Municipal Court in September of 2018.  Karen was also awarded the Prentiss Marshall award by NITA in 2017, for the Development of Innovative Teaching Methods or Programs, for the work she did developing an implicit bias training program for the NITA National Trial Skills Session.  She frequently serves as a media consultant both locally and nationally, being asked to comment on various high profile cases and legal issues.  Karen also provides implicit bias workshops to lawyers and non-lawyers, as well as provides presentations to various groups, including schools, for parents and juveniles, entitled “It’s Not the 70’s Anymore.”