Attorney Carolyn Burghart has something that can only be described as moxie – the courage and determination to succeed, with a little extra verve on the side. She is a standout young family law practitioner at Cadem Law Group PLLC, who brings both vitality and proficiency to her representation of Minnesota families.
Burghart grew up in the Twin Cities, and while still in high school, she experienced the ways in which divorce impacts a family. “My parents went through a messy and tumultuous process,” she said, “and there are issues that still affect us today. It was intriguing to see how the courts split property and make parenting decisions for families based upon societal norms, but not always in the best interests of the people involved. I always had an interest in politics and law, and these circumstances provided a unique perspective as I prepared for my professional career.”
After graduating in both political science and criminal justice from Iowa State University, Burghart went on to earn her law degree from William Mitchell College of Law. There, she became a certified student attorney for William Mitchell’s Child Protection Clinic, where she earned valuable practice experience representing parents in child protection cases in Ramsey County Juvenile Court. She was recognized by the director as the “most enthusiastic advocate against all odds.”
Her professional path brought her to Cadem Law Group, where she has enjoyed challenging work and ample opportunities to hone her skills as a lawyer. “Mr. Cadem was always a mentor to me, and I credit him with motivating me to uphold the highest standards in my practice. He always reminded me early on that age does not always mean wisdom and gave me the confidence early on in my career to successfully advocate for my clients.”
Burghart is confident in her abilities and in touch with the unique assets she brings to her clients. “I work with a lot of older men who like to remind me that they’ve been practicing almost as long as I’ve been alive. But I find that I bring a fresh perspective to my practice. I’m someone who is knowledgeable about new laws, and is relatable to clients and can not only be an advocate to them, but also a friend. I have found that it gives me an advantage.”
She also provides significant relatability for young families and female clients. The compassionate connection she fosters goes a long way in creating the heightened level of trust necessary to facilitate favorable outcomes.
Cadem Law Group has offices in St. Paul and Fergus Falls, and Burghart serves clients in both locations. “My goal is to practice in every county before I retire. I commute back and forth weekly to practice in both offices. I am fortunate at this stage in my career to have the flexibility to choose my own clients and do what I love. I’ve had the opportunity to work on a Minnesota Supreme Court appeal and other appellate cases, and I am currently assisting Mr. Cadem with a first-degree murder case. To have that kind of experience only three years out of law school is extraordinary, and I am very grateful for it.”
Burghart also lives a full life outside of the law. She is an enthusiastic Vikings fan, a runner, and recently discovered her love of fishing. She also makes time to volunteer with various organizations, including the William Mitchell Self-Help Clinic and the Father’s Resource Program.
Burghart is an inspiration to other young women with moxie who are determined to make it in what is often still a man’s world. “You might be up against an older generation of men, but you can be successful. A lot of times, I can see there is a preconceived notion about what kind of lawyer I will be based on how I look, or my gender or age. But I don’t let it stop me. It’s a lot of fun to prove them wrong.”