LAW WEEK COLORADO
Former Denver city attorney Doug Friednash will take over as the governor’s chief of staff on Feb. 2.
Gov. John Hickenlooper announced the appointment Sunday and said Friednash “could not be more perfect for this role, for this time and for this team,” which includes chief strategist Alan Salazar, chief legal counsel Stephanie Donner and chief administrator Kevin Patterson. Friednash replaces Roxane White, who left the position in November to become CEO of the Denver-based Nurse-Family Partnership National Service Office. In the interim, Patterson stepped in to the position on Nov. 13.
As chief of staff, Friednash will oversee the management of state agencies, advise the governor and cabinet members on state issues and provide crisis management support, help to fill critical positions within the cabinet and senior staff and support Salazar as he continues to oversee policy and legislative initiatives.
“This is an exciting time for the state and I look forward to helping Colorado continue to grow under this administration,” Friednash said.
Most recently, Friednash was a shareholder at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck where he managed government relations and public policy, including representing Panasonic Enterprise Solutions in their relocation negotiations with the state and the City of Denver. Prior to joining the firm, Friednash served as the Denver city attorney for Mayor Michael Hancock, managing 100 attorneys and responsible for all municipal representation which included a broad range of matters such as collective bargaining, federal lobbying, leading negotiations involving Denver International Airport and crafting local, state and federal laws and regulations.
Friednash’s public sector experience also includes two terms in the Colorado House of Representatives after being elected in 1992, receiving numerous awards during his two terms including Outstanding Freshman Representative, Business Legislator of the Year, Guardian of Small Business and Friend of the Children. He also served as an assistant attorney general in the office’s criminal enforcement section.
In his capacity handling private sector cases, Friednash litigated public sector and complex commercial litigation. This includes chairing a national securities fraud case, representing pharmaceutical benefit management company and the largest privately-held jeweler in the United States in complex commercial litigation and trademark infringement issues. Friednash graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1984 before earning his law degree from the University of San Diego School of Law. He currently serves on the University of San Diego Law School alumni board of directors, Denver Public Schools Foundation board, Concerts for Kids board of directors and works with the Global Livingston Institute.
Hickenlooper also announced Sunday that Patterson will move to an expanded Chief Administrative Officer role, where he will work with Friednash and Salazar supporting the cabinet on organizational development and interdepartmental projects.