District’s new Legal Counsel aims to serve
CASTLE ROCK - DCSD Legal Counsel Will Trachman is the newest member of Douglas County School District’s leadership team.
He began just before Thanksgiving and quickly settled into the job.
“We have 67,000 students, 8,800 employees. We have real estate dealings, some custody cases that require our employees to testify in court, and even some criminal cases,” Trachman said, listing off just a few of the legal issues he oversees. “I want to make sure that everyone feels that they can come to me and that my door is open, my phone is always on. You can always call me.”
He says his goal is to ensure that everyone in the district, including teachers, staff and students are treated fairly and equitably under the law, and that he is always available as a resource.
“The School District’s interests, along with the interests of students and teachers, are more often aligned than in conflict,” Trachman said.
While it may be easy to focus on whether the School District is meeting the letter of the law, Trachman believes that there is always room to ensure people know they are cared for too.
“I’m trying to create a good culture. Legal compliance doesn’t have to come at the price of making people feel like we don’t care about them,” Trachman said.
Trachman has a lot of experience in navigating touchy situations. As associate lawyer at Littler Mendelson P.C.--an international law firm with 45 offices around the world--he focused on employment law.
“I was working on discrimination claims, benefits claims, health care issues, trade secret lawsuits,” Trachman explained.
Since arriving three months ago, he has been working to get up to speed on the rest of the law that pertains to a school district.
“Employment law has served me well, but I like to say that is one percent of this job,” Trachman continued. “The other 99 percent is making sure that all of our special education students are well-taken care of, managing board requests, and responding to other issues as they may arise.”
Outside of work, Will has four children that keep him busy. He and his wife love to travel. In fact, they visit Florida twice a year to visit his grandmother, who will turn 99 on March 1.
He also serves on the executive committee of the Urban Debate League.
He began coaching with the league when he was a student at Berkley in California. He says the experience gave him the chance to support underserved high school students in nearby Oakland.
“Just getting these students involved in debate was amazing,” Trachman said. “It gave them a vehicle to be their own advocates.”
He was touched by the challenges that the students overcame. Some even went on to graduate college, went through grad school and eventually became lawyers.
“It was a very rewarding opportunity for me,” Trachman said.