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D. Scott Martinez

D. Scott Martinez

Partner| Denver


D. Scott Martinez leads the Government Relations, Regulatory and Administrative Law practice in the Firm's Denver office. He operates at the intersection of commerce, politics and policy, helping businesses navigate complex government regulatory and administrative processes. Scott solves problems for clients in every industry working under government regulation – from developers and construction, to emerging industries and government contractors.

Scott’s experience as Denver’s City Attorney under Mayor Michael Hancock underlies his understanding of the public sector. As City Attorney, Scott provided day-to-day legal, business and strategic advice to the Mayor, all City Departments and Agencies, City Council Members, the Clerk and Recorder and Auditor. Under Scott’s leadership, the City Attorney’s Office focused on operating at the speed of business – reducing contracting time from an average 121 days to 37 days. He also established the Taxpayer Protection Unit, the City’s first affirmative litigation team, recovering over a million dollars in taxpayer funds and commercial services in its first year. Scott’s tenure also oversaw the innovative legal structure for the implementation of the nation’s first recreational marijuana regulatory system.

The Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) recognized Scott’s legal work, honoring him as their national Latino Lawyer of the Year for 2014. That same year, Law Week Colorado named Scott as their Lawyer of the Year. Locally, the Colorado Hispanic Bar Association (CHBA) recognized Scott with the Chris Miranda Lawyer of the Year Award (2016) and the Denver Business Journal recognized him as one of their Forty under 40 Awardees (2014). The University of Colorado Law School recognized Scott as the Dean’s Choice for the Edward King “Pay it Forward” Award (2013) and the University of San Diego, School of Law awarded him its Alumni of the Year Award (2014).

Prior to his public service, Scott worked at Denver’s largest law firm counseling corporate boards and officers regulated by federal, state and local governments. He frequently represented clients scrutinized by the U.S. Senate, U.S. House, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Department of Justice, State Attorneys General and various states’ Departments of Regulatory Affairs. 

Scott’s work in law and politics includes service on the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team for the Office of White House Counsel’s Staff. He was a part of the team that drafted the President’s first Executive Orders. Immediately prior to his work at Snell & Wilmer, Scott worked on the legal team for the Clinton-Kaine presidential campaign, building on Scott’s election and campaign finance experience.

In addition to Scott’s legal work, he remains active in the community as the Co-Founder, Board Member and Mentor for the Government Entrepreneurship Leadership Acceleration, a Board Member of the White Center for the Study of American Constitutional Law at the University of Colorado Law School, and a Mentor for Law School…Yes We Can. 

  • University of San Diego, School of Law (J.D. 2006)
    • CALI Awards (Highest Grade): Negotiations; Statutory Interpretation
  • University of Colorado, Boulder (B.A., International Affairs, 2000)
    • Minor: Economics
    • Student Body President, Tri-Executive (1998-1999)
  • Colorado Bar Association (2006-present)
    • Board of Governors (2009-2013)
  • Colorado Hispanic Bar Association (2006-present)
    • Public Policy Chair (2009-2013)
  • Hispanic National Bar Association (2006-present)
  • American Bar Association (2006-present)
  • International Municipal Lawyers Association (2011-2016)
  • "US cities shower Amazon with offers of tax breaks," Quoted, The Financial Times (October 19, 2017)
  • Chris Miranda Outstanding Lawyer of the Year, Colorado Hispanic Bar Association (2016)
  • Ricardo Salinas Foundation Scholarship, Aspen Institute, Socrates Program (2016)
  • National Latino Lawyer of the Year, Hispanic National Bar Association (2014)
  • Lawyer of the Year, Law Week Colorado (2014)
  • Alumni of the Year, University of San Diego, School of Law (2014)
  • 40 Under 40, Denver Business Journal (2014)
  • Dean Edward C. King "Pay it Forward" Award, University of Colorado Law School, Dean's Choice Award (2013)
  • Chair's Award for Service, Colorado Democratic Party (2012)
  • Top Up and Coming Attorney, Law Week Colorado (2007)
  • Rising Star, Colorado Democratic Party (2002)
  • Unsung Hero Award, 5280 Magazine (2002)
  • Downtown Denver Partnership, Civic Ventures Board Member
  • Government Entrepreneurship Leadership Accelerator, Co-Founder, Board Member, Mentor (2016-present)
  • White Center for the Study of American Constitutional Law at the University of Colorado Law School, Board Member (2010-present)
  • LAW SCHOOL…Yes We Can, Mentor (2014-present)
  • Frequent featured lecturer on leadership to high school, college and law school students (2006-present)
  • Rocky Mountain City Summit, Steering Committee (2012-2015)
  • Municipal Victim Assistance and Law Enforcement Board, Mayoral Appointee (2011-2015)
  • Bell Policy Center, Board Member (2007-2014); Board Chair (2010-2014)
  • Colorado BlueFlower, Board Member (2007-2013)
  • Collection Agency Board, Gubernatorial Appointee (2008-2010)
  • Election Reform Commission, Gubernatorial Appointee (2008)
  • City and County of Denver
    • City Attorney (2014-2016)
    • Deputy City Attorney (2012-2014)
  • Holland & Hart LLP, Corporate Board and Government Investigations Attorney (2006-2012)
  • Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team, Office of White House Counsel Transition Staff (2008-2009)
  • Colorado
  • Supreme Court of Colorado
  • United States District Court, District of Colorado
  • United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit