Deputy District Attorney Laura Kinde makes opening arguments in a 2016 murder trial. Kinde was recently named the Prosecutor of the Year by the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council. (Cliff Grassmick/Staff Photographer)

Two members of the Boulder County District Attorney’s Office, Senior Deputy District Attorney Laura Kinde and Assistant District Attorney Ken Kupfner, were honored by the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council at its annual conference for outstanding accomplishments.

Kinde was honored by prosecutors across the state with the Prosecutor of the Year Award. Working in the Sex Crimes and Special Victims Unit, Kinde said helping survivors of sexual violence has been her passion since her internship with the Denver District Attorney’s office during law school.

“Throughout my internship at the Denver DA’s office, I fell in love with this line of work and seeking justice for victims,” Kinde said.

During her career with the Boulder District Attorney’s Office she has done exactly that, handling felony-level sexual assault, sexual assaults on children, child exploitation crimes, and child abuse cases.

Kinde successfully prosecuted six sexual assault trials in the past year. In the six trials, she helped 16 adult and child victims. All the perpetrators were found guilty at trial, thanks to Kinde’s unrelenting efforts.

“It’s incredibly difficult but also incredibly rewarding,” Kinde said about working with victims of sexual crime. “It’s very tough to be a survivor of this type of crime and to have to try to navigate the criminal justice system on your own. That’s one of the things that I find so rewarding is that I can kind of help survivors through the process.”

District Attorney Michael Dougherty praised Kinde’s achievements in a press release.

“Laura Kinde is a champion for justice and for victims,” Dougherty wrote. “Sexual assault cases, particularly those involving kids, are extremely difficult. As she has done throughout her career, Laura has demonstrated exceptional courage, dedication, and skill over the past year on behalf of sex assault victims.”

Dr. Janine D’Anniballe, director of Boulder County’s Moving to End Sexual Assault also spoke about Kinde’s commitment to her work.

“Laura’s dedication to justice for survivors is exemplary. Her perseverance, creative problem-solving, and compassion make her an outstanding district attorney and advocate for survivors of sexual violence,” D’Anniballe wrote in a press release.

Kinde said she is grateful for her colleagues in the Sex Crimes and Special Victims Unit and loves fighting for its cause.

“To be honored with this award is truly humbling,” she said. “I feel very fortunate every day that I get to go to work and seek justice for victims, work with law enforcement as closely as I do, and to be able to advocate for something I truly, truly believe in.”

Assistant District Attorney Ken Kupfner in court during a 2018 trial. Kupnfer was recently awarded the Outstanding Faculty Award by the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council. (Cliff Grassmick/Staff photographer)

Another member of the Boulder District Attorney’s Office, Assistant District Attorney Ken Kupfner, was awarded the CDAC Outstanding Faculty Award. Kupfner was recognized for his exemplary work, for his contributions teaching prosecutors and law enforcement officers around the state.

Kupfner has been conducting trainings for nearly his entire career as a prosecutor.

“If I can help other prosecutors not make the same mistakes that I made, then that is a valuable contribution,” Kupfner said.

In the past year, Kupfner managed to design and teach a Major Case Course for Colorado’s prosecutors in July, as well as facilitating training for Boulder County law enforcement officers on the recent Senate Bill 217 for law enforcement integrity. All of this he did in addition to his work as an assistant district attorney.

“Ken is a terrific prosecutor and works hard to present outstanding trainings on legal and ethical issues for attorneys and law enforcement officers,” Dougherty said in a statement. “I am grateful that CDAC has chosen to recognize his tireless efforts with this distinguished award… He is a great leader, mentor, and teacher for the prosecutors of this state.”Kupfner said the award is the fruit of a collaborative effort with his colleagues. Looking towards the future, he is motivated to continue his training endeavors.

“Any time somebody can walk away from a presentation or training and be better equipped to do their job and do it the right way, then I feel like I’ve done what I set out to do,” he said.

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