Financial institutions and other businesses rely on Ernie's legal counsel to structure, negotiate and close the transactions that move business forward.


Ernie advises financial institutions on strategic mergers and acquisitions and the corporate law that governs these transactions. He provides trusted counsel about federal and state banking matters and related securities law and financing issues.

Ernie assists financial institutions and their affiliate companies in creatively structuring and successfully implementing mergers and acquisitions throughout the Western United States. His work contributes to Stinson’s position as a leader among law firms in the U.S. in the number of banking deals in which it served as counsel.


Ernie has been directly involved in more than 150 transactions as counsel for buyers or sellers of financial institutions and the merger and acquisition of businesses in a diverse range of other industries.

He assists companies in regulatory enforcement actions, public and private capital formation and strategic planning matters.

Ernie advises directors and officers concerning their fiduciary obligations and potential exposure in their capacities with financial institutions.

He leverages career experience in financial institutions and as a former attorney with the National Office of the Internal Revenue Service to benefit his clients.

Ernie regularly speaks at banking industry conferences and serves as a facilitator to bank boards and their management teams.

News & Insights

Speaking Engagements

Ernie is a regular speaker for numerous banking associations on areas including: directors' and officers' liability, mergers and acquisitions, creating shareholder value, bank compliance and regulatory enforcement actions at the state and federal levels. 

  • "M&A Transactions: Looking under the Hood," 2015 Western Independent Banker's Annual Directors Conference, November 2015 
  • "Workshop I: For Banks Under $1BN" covered financial and legal fundamentals of community bank M&A through a series of case studies," Bank Director's 2015 Acquire or Be Acquired conference, January 2015 
  • "Building a Strong Compliance Program," panel facilitated by Ernie Panasci, Western States Director Education Foundation Symposium, November 2014 
  • "Getting the Deal DONE Right," case study exercise featuring a section on Legal Due Diligence by Ernie Panasci, Western Independent Banker's M&A Conference, June 2014



Selected as Best Lawyers©' 2020 Denver Banking and Finance Law "Lawyer of the Year"

Consistently named in The Best Lawyers in America© in the areas of banking and finance law

Super Lawyers©, Business Edition, Banking, 2011-2012

Colorado Super Lawyers, Banking, 2009-2012 and 2015-2016

Professional & Civic Activities

Professional & Civic Activities

American Bar Association

Colorado Bar Association

New York Bar Association

California Bar Association


  • Colorado
  • New York
  • California
  • Arizona


Georgetown University Law Center, LL.M., Taxation, 1979

Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 1976

St. Louis University, B.A., 1973 

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