Retired Colorado Judge Co-Founds the Consilium Institute

Judge Field sees Consilium as a revolution in divorce practice.

Judge Julie Field, a district court judge in Colorado, retired from the bench in October 2021 after nearly eleven years. “I loved my job as a judge,” reported Judge Field, “but I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to be part of an initiative as transformative as the Consilium Institute.” The Consilium Institute is the brainchild of Heidi Webb, who developed the Consilium Process sixteen years ago and applied it to her own practice with great success. “Like most attorneys who handle family law cases, I knew that the divorce process was broken, and needed to be fixed. Even cases where there is legally a ‘good’ outcome, there is also extraordinary–and often unnecessary–pain. I developed the Consilium Process as a way to strategically and systematically think through a family’s unique characteristics, and how to address their particular and real needs throughout and after the divorce case. I found it worked for my clients, and using this approach made my work as a lawyer more effective, and more gratifying, than it had been before.”

Judge Field has served as a law professor and mediator, and was an expert on domestic violence law and on evidence and trial practice skills, before her appointment to the bench in January 2011. She has worked to create innovations in family law cases through litigation and legislation since she was in law school at the University of Chicago. Heidi Webb and Judge Field have been friends and colleagues for decades. “I’ve watched Heidi’s evolution as a family law attorney, and as a brilliant innovator and deep thinker about how to improve the system. She shared the Consilium Process with me as she developed it, and we worked together to refine it. I knew immediately that it was a game-changer for lawyers, clients, and judges – that it is that elusive “better way” that everyone involved in the family law world laments the need for.” 

Heidi and Julie wrote a book designed for parties who are navigating the divorce process on their own, to familiarize them with the principles of the Consilium Process. “But we knew it wasn’t enough if we really wanted to change the divorce process in a systematic, meaningful way.” Heidi noted. “We knew if we wanted to revolutionize divorce, we would have to teach the Consilium Process to lawyers, judges, and other allied professionals such as therapists and financial planners.” Heidi has taught lawyers and judges the Process over the past several years, with great success and benefit to those professionals and their work.

It was out of this vision that the Consilium Institute was born. Judge Field is enthusiastic and passionate about the Consilium Process. Field says: “The Consilium Institute takes the Consilium Process that Heidi created and brings it to lawyers and judges, who can immediately apply it to their cases. But it’s not just a training program: the Consilium Institute is building a community of multidisciplinary practitioners that has the potential to transform divorce cases in every court in the country. THAT is why I retired from the bench to work with Heidi and the Consilium Institute. I can’t wait to share the Consilium Process and its Better Way to navigate  divorce cases, for attorneys and judges all over the country.” 

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