Cole Finegan

Cole Finegan


Email cole.finegan@​

Phone +1 303 454 2583

Fax +1 303 899 7333

Practice groupGlobal Regulatory

"I think he's got more political wisdom than almost anyone I can think of in Colorado. What I have prized most from him over the years is his judgment and his gentle relentlessness."

Senator Michael Bennet

For more than 30 years, Cole Finegan has focused his practice on working locally and nationally with businesses and governmental entities to create and expand public-private partnerships (PPP). He has represented clients in regulatory, land use and development, and legislative and public policy law.

Cole's efforts led Law Week Colorado to recognize him as "Lawyer of the Decade" and "Lawyer of the Year" for 2013. He was also named one of the most influential people in Denver by 5280 magazine in its feature "The 5280 Fifty." Best Lawyers in America has also honored Cole as the "Denver Municipal Lawyer of the Year" (2016).

Prior to joining Hogan Lovells, Cole served both as Denver's City Attorney and Chief of Staff to Mayor John Hickenlooper. During his tenure as City Attorney, Cole reorganized the office of 100 lawyers for the first time in 20 years, saving the city more than US$1 million by cutting outside legal services and expanding the city's capabilities to try its own cases.

As Chief of Staff, he led the successful campaign to change Denver's charter to add a Chief Financial Officer and to modernize the city's 100-year-old financial services structure. His passion for community service has kept him involved in almost every major PPP in Denver, including the redevelopment of Stapleton Airport, the Gates Rubber Company facility, and most recently Denver Union Station.

Cole also served both as Chief Legal Counsel and Director of Policy and Initiatives for Colorado Governor Roy Romer from 1991 to 1993. He handled the governor's legal matters, advised the governor on judicial appointments, and supervised a policy development staff of 60 working on economic, environmental, health care, energy, telecommunications, transportation, and education policy issues.

From 1978 to 1986, Cole worked as a legislative aide and Chief of Staff to U.S. Representative James R. Jones of Oklahoma, who chaired the U.S. House of Representatives' Budget Committee from 1981-1985.

Awards and recognitions

2010-2019, 2021

Municipal Law
The Best Lawyers in America


Top Lawyer - Government Relations, Contracts, and Lobbying


Acritas Star
Acritas Stars Independently Rated Lawyers


500 Leading lawyers list


Denver Municipal Law, Lawyer of the Year
The Best Lawyers in America

2007-2009, 2012-2018

Colorado Super Lawyers


People's Choice Government Lawyer
Barrister's Best, Law Week Colorado


Lawyer of the Year
Law Week Colorado


Lawyer of the Decade
Law Week Colorado


The 50 Most Influential People in Denver

Education and admissions


J.D., Georgetown University Law Center, 1986

B.A., University of Notre Dame, 1978


Past Board Member, Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce

Past Board Member, Teach for America

Member, Colorado Forum

Past Board Chair, Downtown Denver Partnership

Past Board Member, The Denver Foundation

Bar admissions and qualifications


District of Columbia (inactive)

Registered Foreign Lawyer, England and Wales

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