Zach Elsner was born in Akron, Ohio in 1977. Zach has four older brothers, and spent his childhood playing sports and enjoying the outdoors with his family. He spent his high school years in Jackson, Tennessee, where he played soccer, basketball, and football.
After high school, Zach moved to Colorado and attended the University of Colorado in Boulder. During college, Zach had the opportunity to study abroad on scholarship in Italy in 1997 and in Sweden for the 1998 and 1999 school year. While abroad, he had the opportunity to travel throughout Europe. In his free time, Zach began backcountry skiing, rock climbing, and mountaineering.
After college, Zach moved to Seattle to pursue his law degree from Seattle University. While in law school, he served as an associate editor of the Seattle University Law Review, where an article he authored was selected for publication. Zach also had the opportunity to extern for a U.S. District Court Judge for the Western District of Washington. During his free time, he became an expert skier and mountaineer, climbing and skiing many routes in the North Cascades. He graduated cum laude from Seattle University School of Law in 2004.
After law school, Zach was a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for King County in Seattle, Washington for seven years. During his tenure there, he conducted over sixty trials on charges including DUI, Theft, Animal Cruelty, Robbery, Rape, and Child Molestation. He also served on an auto theft task force where he worked closely with detectives to develop investigation strategies and to target specific groups of auto thieves.
In 2012, Zach moved back to Colorado, where he joined the law firm of Bachus & Schanker as an associate attorney where he represented hundreds of clients on claims for personal injury, wrongful death, and sexual assault. He received many favorable results for his clients including a judgment of over $17.5 million in a wrongful death case and a judgment of $4.8 million in a sexual assault case.
Zach joined the Sawaya Law Firm in 2014. He is currently a managing attorney and director of the litigation department. Zach has won several large verdicts and reached hundreds of settlements for his clients. He specializes in cases involving traumatic brain injuries and representing victims of sexual assault and other criminal misconduct. In 2019, he earned an arbitration award for his client of over $2 million in a case against U-Haul which successfully challenged U-Haul’s methodology for determining which trailers are approved for particular vehicles.
Zach also volunteers as a member of the board of directors for the Rocky Mountain Victim Law Center, and occasionally represents crime victims on a pro bono basis in the criminal process to ensure their rights are honored and protected.
When he is not in court or preparing cases for trial, he enjoys whitewater rafting, backcountry skiing, live music, soaking in hot springs, and spending time with his two sons.