CHRISTINE (CHRISTIE) A. COATES is an experienced attorney in Boulder, Colorado whose solo practice now emphasizes alternative dispute resolution.

With a B.A. in psychology and sociology and an M.Ed. in adult counseling, Christie brought a rich and varied background in management and education to her “change of career” law practice which she began in 1983.  She was named “Outstanding Young Lawyer in Colorado” by the Colorado Bar Association in 1986, “Mediator of the Year” by the Colorado Council of Mediators and Mediation Organizations in 1996, received an award for her advocacy on behalf of children from Voices for Children of Boulder, Colorado CASA program in 1996 and was the recipient of the 1999 Community Service Award of the Boulder Interdisciplinary Committee on Child Custody. She was presented the 2003 Award of Merit by the Boulder County Bar Association for her outstanding achievement and dedication to the legal profession and service to the community and also received in 2006 the John Vanduzer Distinguished Service Award from the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), an international interdisciploinary organization.  In June 2011 she received the President’s Award from the outgoing president of AFCC for her exemplary service to AFCC and her work as an ADR professional and mentor.  In October of that same year she was the recipient of the John Haynes Distinguished Mediator Award from the international Association for Conflict Resolution.  The Boulder IDC again co-awarded her its Community Service Award in 2013 in appreciation for a pro bono early neutral consultation program that she co-founded in the Boulder District Court.

Since opening her solo law practice in 1983, she has been active in local, state and national bar association activities, which she sees as a way to bring about positive change in our legal system.   Currently she is a past president of the Boulder County Bar Association and the Boulder County Bar Foundation, a past member of the Board of Governors of the Colorado Bar Association (CBA), a member of the CBA ADR Section, and she served 8 years on the CBA Family Law Section Executive Council.  She is a past board member and Vice President of the Colorado Council of Mediators and Mediation Organizations.  A past president of the Metropolitan Lawyer Referral Service (MLRS), she has been a consultant for the American Bar Association, providing technical assistance to lawyer referral services around the country.

She remains active in the Boulder Interdisciplinary Committee and is a past president of that organization.  She is a past president of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, an international interdisciplinary organization.  Christie also served on the American Bar Association’s Task Force on Standards of Practice for Divorce Mediation and served on the steering committee of an inter-organizational effort that finalized these Standards. She has co-chaired the ABA’s Dispute Resolution Section’s ADR and Family Functions Committee and the Family Law Section’s Mediation Committee.

A mediator since 1984, she has been active in promoting the use of ADR in the legal system.  Christie administered a child protection mediation pilot program in Boulder County and continues to mediate child protection cases in the Denver metro area.  She is a frequent and popular national speaker, trainer and writer on conflict resolution, mediation, mediation-arbitration, arbitration, parenting coordination, reflective practice, professionalism and family law.  She has been an adjunct professor of family law and mediation at the University of Colorado School of Law and currently teaches alternative dispute resolution at the University of Denver.  Pioneering in the expansion of the use of hybrid ADR processes, such as mediation-arbitration and parenting coordination in family conflict, she offers comprehensive training in these processes. She serves on the editorial review board of the Family Court Review and is a co-author of Working with High Conflict Families: A Guide for Professionals (Jason Aronson Publishers, 2001) and  Learning from Divorce (Jossey-Bass, 2003).

Christie’s dispute resolution experience is extensive, having served as a neutral in such areas of conflict as civil litigation, personal injury, commercial, debtor-creditor, divorce and child custody, non-divorce family issues, organization, government, and education.

Contact Christie at

4845 Pearl East Circle #101
Boulder, CO  80302