Kirsten I. Bernhardt brings a wealth of knowledge and a diverse skill set to the nationally-recognized Tulsa law firm Fry & Elder as its newest trial lawyer. Much of Kirsten’s practice at Fry & Elder will focus on high-conflict, high-resolution family law and criminal law, but she also has extensive experience in civil litigation. She has had tremendous success in both jury and bench trials highlighted by her winning a judgement in excess of $10 million from Coca-Cola and also has significant experience with capital trial cases.
Kirsten comes from a long lineage of lawyers and judges in her family, which includes her mother, who is a judge on the Oklahoma Criminal Court of Appeals. Now entering her 30th year as a practicing attorney, Kirsten has garnered several accolades over the years including being named the Outstanding Young Lawyer by the Tulsa County Bar Association, the President’s Honor Award by the Tulsa County Bar Association and the Award for Distinguished Service to the Public from the Oklahoma Bar Association. Additionally, Kirsten won not-guilty verdicts in an impressive six felony jury trials during her two-year stint with the Tulsa County Public Defender’s Office.
“She’s extremely accomplished and experienced,” Robert G “Hap” Fry Jr. said of Kirsten. “She’s very sharp in a lot of different areas, which will make her very valuable to our current and prospective clients.”
Kirsten left her own self practice of nearly 16 years to join the team of accomplished trial lawyers at Fry & Elder because of the firm’s reputation.
“This is the only firm I would have done that for,” Kirsten said. “They’re growing, and they’re just doing some incredible things. They really stand out from the rest of the firms in town.”
A native Oklahoman, Kirsten attended the University of Oklahoma and received both her B.A. in English and Juris Doctor in 1983 and 1986. She has three children along with three cats and two dogs. As a lifelong Episcopalian, Kirsten has been attending St. Dunstan’s Episcopal Church for 30 years. She also has been a three-time national champion coach with the Explorer mock trial team.
MEMBERSHIPS & AWARDS:
- Member, American Inns of Court Hudson Hall Wheaton Chapter
- Oklahoma Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
- Tulsa County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
- Outstanding Young Lawyer, Tulsa County Bar Association
- Three time national champion coach, Explorer Law mock trial team
- Oklahoma and Tulsa County Bar Associations
- Family Law Section, Oklahoma Bar Association
- Award for Distinguished Service to the Public, Oklahoma Bar Association
- President’s Honor Award, Tulsa County Bar Association
- Distinguished Service Award, Tulsa County Bar Association
J.D., University of Oklahoma College of Law, Magna Cum Laude, 1986
B.A., University of Oklahoma, Cum Laude, 1983