Friednash, Douglas J.

Recognized by his peers as the “Best Government Lawyer” in Law Week and dubbed “The Insider” by Colorado Politics, Doug has a deep background in the public and private sectors.  Doug Friednash represents local, regional and national clients in a wide range of industries with issues related to, lobbying, public policy, and government relations. Doug has spent his entire career operating at the intersection of law, business and politics and is well known for his ability to solve complex issues with practical solutions.

Doug serves as the chair of the firm’s State & Local Legislation & Policy Group and the national Strategic Advisory Services group, which unites the firm’s unique expertise to solve policy, regulatory and legal problems for clients. In addition to his state and local government relations work in Colorado, Doug also represents clients across the country and in Washington DC.

Doug has substantial experience within emerging regulated industries, as well as working on national issues such as cannabis and hemp policy, energy, affordable housing, higher education, health care and transportation.

Doug regularly provides insights to national, state and local media on a variety of legislative and political issues. He also speaks to governmental entities and national conferences sharing his experience and knowledge about the regulated marijuana industry.

As an opinion columnist for The Denver Post he covers political stories and trends impacting the state and nation.

A Denver native, Doug most recently served as chief of staff to Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper. As the lead staff member of the administration, he oversaw the management of state agencies, advised the governor and cabinet members on key issues, provided crisis management leadership, helped to fill critical positions within the cabinet and senior staff and was responsible for implementing Gov. Hickenlooper’s statewide policy and legislative initiatives.

Doug also served as city attorney under Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, where he played a key role in every high-profile issue facing the city and managed one of the largest public law firms in Colorado, supervising over 100 attorneys with responsibility for the entire range of municipal representation. As city attorney, Doug focused on representing Mayor Hancock in all matters involving the administration as well as municipal operations, litigation and airport legal services. He was active in a broad range of matters, including collective bargaining; federal lobbying; leading negotiations involving Denver International Airport; and crafting local, state and federal marijuana laws and regulations.

Prior to joining the Hancock administration, Doug was a partner in an international law firm in Denver, where his practice focused on government relations, administrative and regulatory law and litigation.

Following law school, Doug worked in the Colorado Attorney General’s Office Enforcement Section. In 1992, Doug was elected to the Colorado House of Representatives, where he served two terms.

Doug is actively involved in many political, charitable and community causes and is committed to enhancing the well-being of Colorado.

News & Events

Board of Directors, Amp the Cause

Board of Directors, University of San Diego School of Law Alumni Association

Recent Publications & Presentations
  • J.D., 1987, University of San Diego School of Law
  • B.A., 1984, University of California at Santa Barbara
  • Colorado

Law Week Colorado, Barrister's Best "Best Government Law Lawyer," 2019

Colorado Politics, Key Influencers at the Colorado Capitol, 2019

Outstanding Corporate Commitment Award - Denver City Attorney’s Office, Colorado Hispanic Bar Association

Power Book Award in the Category of Law, 2011, Denver Business Journal

Chamber Champion, Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce, 2011

Chambers USA, America’s Leading Business Lawyers, 2010 & 2011

Finalist, Denver Business Journal Power Book Awards, 2009 & 2010

Best Government Lawyer, Barrister's Best, Law Week Colorado, 2009 and 2010

Lawyer of the Year, Law Week Colorado, 2009

Diversity and Inclusion Award, National Hispanic Bar Association, 2013

Pay It Forward Award, University of Colorado Law School, 2014 


Member, Gov Polis’ COVID-19 Response Financial Services Subcommittee

Colorado Bar Association

Denver Bar Association

Quarterly Forum Vanguard Member