Lawyer strikes out on his own at the age of 63

Kirk Rider, a fixture in Grand Junction legal circles for more than three decades, has struck out on his own, opening a practice with relative newcomer Lloyd Quesenberry.

The two left Younge and Hockensmith, a litigation firm with offices near Grand Junction Regional Airport, and founded their own transactional-law practice near downtown Grand Junction at 200 Grand Ave.

The split was without rancor, Rider said, because he and Quesenberry practiced different types of law than their old firm.

Now on their own, Rider and Quesenberry are more masters of their fate.

“We’re free to be doing things our way,” Rider said.

As such, they decide how best to represent participants in sales and purchases of businesses and other significant transactions, as well as handle local government bond issues.

There was more to the change than control, though.

For Rider, 63, it was an opportunity to step beyond the practice in which he had worked for more than 35 years.

It was a logical step for Quesenberry, who moved originally to Colorado from his practice in Texas with a large firm, where, he recalled, he ate breakfast, lunch and dinner at his desk.

Moving to Grand Junction offered a lifestyle change, he said.

Their partnership was the logical extension of the relationship, Rider said.

“We see eye to eye to a surprising degree,” Rider said.

Almost as important, or maybe more, was the opportunity to practice downtown, within walking distance of the old Mesa County Courthouse and its recording division, as well as the offices of title companies and other businesses with whom they work on a regular basis.

“We have quick access face to face” with the city and county officials with which they work, Quesenberry said.

Instead of chowing down at their desks, they frequently walk downtown for meetings, lunches or to their service clubs. Rider is a member of the Grand Junction Rotary Club and Quesenberry is a Grand Junction Lion.

They don’t, however, intend the practice to be in the slow lane.

Economic growth in the region means there will be plenty of businesses moving in, growing, changing hands and developing real estate, all matters that the new firm handles.

The firm’s prospects appear bright, Rider said, because western Colorado’s growth needs “are just going to continue.”


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