Compassion in the Matter of Life and Death: Colorado's Death with Dignity Law

Mortality, Morality and Honor: The End-of-Life Paradigm
Presenter, Dr. Charles Hamlin, will visit society’s attitudes towards death and dying. Imparting philosophy, humor, a little data but no dogma, he will attempt to define how culture, law, religion and medicine interact to shape the landscape of the last chapter of an individual’s life.

Please, I Want to Die: Why My Father, Charles, and I Were Inspired to Initiate the Colorado End-of-Life Options Act as a Ballot Initiative
Julie Selsberg will discuss how the current medical aid in dying movement began in Colorado and share her father’s story and her involvement. She will also provide an outline on how the Death with Dignity Law works and can be accessed.   To read Charles Selsberg’s letter to Colorado’s representatives and senators of the Colorado General Assembly published in the Denver Post, go to  http://www.denverpost.com/2014/02/27/please-i-want-to-die/. To read Julie Selsberg’s Guest Commentary written for the Denver Post go to  http://www.denverpost.com/2016/08/18/terminally-ill-coloradans-deserve-the-option-of-a-peaceful-death/.

Colorado’s Death with Dignity Law: A Legal Perspective
Jessica Radke will discuss the law from a legal viewpoint as a Deputy District Attorney.

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End of Life Options (Powerpoint)

Presenters

Dr. Charles Hamlin, a graduate of Yale College and Columbia Medical School in New York. Dr. Hamlin practiced hand surgery in Denver for 40 years and in 2001 was recipient of the Humanitarian Award, given by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. Dr. Hamlin was awarded the Volunteer Service Award, given by the American Society of Surgery of the Hand. He currently serves on the National Board of Compassion and Choices, the largest advocacy group for choice at the end-of-life and aid in dying.

Julie Selsberg grew up in Wisconsin and graduated from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and Washington University School of Law. Julie was a prosecutor in New York City for the first part of her legal career, before moving to Denver and joining the Attorney General’s Office. As a First Assistant Attorney General, Julie supervised the Prosecution Assistance Unit which included overseeing a DNA exoneration program for Colorado inmates and the marijuana enforcement training team, among other units. Julie currently works as a consulting attorney for a non-profit organization, The Prosecutor’s Center for Excellence, assisting district attorneys across the country with criminal justice policies and practices. Julie was a co-petitioner on the Colorado End-of-Life Options Act, Proposition 106, which was overwhelmingly passed by Colorado voters in November 2016.

Jessica Radke is a Deputy District Attorney with the First Judicial District in Jefferson County.  She graduated from the University of Kansas School of Law in 2007, where she received the American College of Trial Lawyers Award for outstanding trial advocacy skills. Licensed in Missouri after graduation, she began her legal career as a civil litigator in the Kansas City area, but pursued a career in criminal law after becoming a law clerk for the Honorable Judge Margie Enquist in 2008.  From 2009 to 2011, Ms. Radke distinguished herself as a City Attorney for Lakewood, Colorado, handling a mixed docket comprised of low level drug, theft, and domestic violence cases.  In 2011, she obtained her current position with the First Judicial District Attorney’s Office and is currently assigned to the Elder Abuse Unit, focusing on all felony level offenses committed against individuals over the age of 70—including assault, neglect, theft, and criminal exploitation.
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