Kaela Zihlman

Attorney  |  kaela@willoughbylaw.com

Areas of Emphasis

  • Domestic Relations Litigation
  • Prenuptial Agreements
  • Estate Planning & Administration

Kaela clerked for Judge Robert L. McGahey, Jr., and interned for Judge Brian Whitney in their domestic dockets in Denver District Court, honing her skills in domestic relations in both of these positions. Prior to attending law school, she worked for two years as a paralegal for a domestic relations law firm. While working in Denver District Court, Kaela learned the strengths and limitations of taking cases to court. She strives to help each individual client reach the best outcome in his or her case, be that inside or outside the courtroom. She is thrilled to join Willoughby & Associates in family law.


University of Denver Sturm College of Law, 2016, Juris Doctor.

  • Editor in Chief – University of Denver Criminal Law Review
  • Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society
  • Student Trial Lawyers Association, Best Advocate, 1L Participant

Colorado Women’s College – University of Denver Certificate in Community-Based Research, March, 2013

University of Colorado at Boulder, 2011, Bachelor of Arts, English Literature

  • President, University of Colorado Mock Trial Team (3 years)
  • University of Colorado Student Government (3 years)


Judge Robert L. McGahey, Jr., Denver District Court, Law Clerk, March 2016 – July 2017

Robinson & Henry, P.C., Legal Extern, August 2015-December 2015.

Judge Robert L. McGahey, Jr., Denver District Court, Judicial Extern (Domestic Docket), January 2015-May 2015.

Judge Brian Whitney, Denver District Court, Judicial Intern (Domestic Docket), August 2014 – November 2014

Reilly Pozner, LLP, Summer Law Clerk,  May 2014 – August 2014

Gutterman Griffiths, P.C., Paralegal, June 2011 – June 2013

Professional Associations

Colorado Bar Association, Family Law Section

About Kaela

Kaela is a Colorado native and grew up in Evergreen. She loves to travel to new places and see new things. Recently, Kaela went to Iceland to see the Northern Lights (a childhood goal) and to Spain and the Dominican Republic (to practice Spanish, which she speaks). Kaela explores the ever-changing Denver restaurant scene and finds new gems around town. She enjoys watching competitive curling and participates in workshops at the Denver Curling Club.

Kaela’s interest in law stems from her experience participating in mock trial in high school and college, and she spent time traveling the country with her teams for competitions. During law school, Kaela took courses that would give her praactical legal experience, indlucing Basic and Advanced Trial Practice with Judge McGahey, Advanced Family Law with Judge Arkin, and Appellate Advocacy with Justice Hood.

Kaela is passionate about family law because she believes in finding solutions for families in transition. She recognizes the importance of empowering her clients to move forward from the difficult times feeling confident and capable.