Publications & News

WilmerHale Continues Expansion in Denver with Addition of Two Attorneys

March 28, 2016

WilmerHale announced that it has added two attorneys to its Denver office—Michael J.P. Hazel as counsel and Nora Q.E. Passamaneck as senior associate. The addition of Mr. Hazel and Ms. Passamaneck further bolsters the Denver office's strengths in natural resources, complex government and internal investigations, and intellectual property litigation, and underscores the importance of Colorado and the Rocky Mountain region to WilmerHale.

“We are thrilled to welcome Michael and Nora to WilmerHale's Denver office because they are outstanding, experienced attorneys who are committed to developing innovative legal strategies to help clients grow,” said Andy Spielman, co-partner in charge of WilmerHale's Denver office. 

Natalie Hanlon Leh, co-partner in charge of WilmerHale's Denver office, added, “In addition to counseling clients nationally and internationally, attorneys in the Denver office of WilmerHale represent a number of local Colorado and Rocky Mountain companies, and Michael and Nora add to the depth of experience we are able to provide to them.”

Mr. Hazel joins WilmerHale's Denver office from the firm's office in Washington DC, where he spent the past six years representing individuals and major corporations in federal court and before Congress and executive agencies. He also counseled clients in connection with high-stakes regulatory, legislative and criminal inquiries. Mr. Hazel earned his law degree, magna cum laude, in 2008 from Georgetown University Law Center, where he was elected to the Order of the Coif and served as executive notes editor of The Georgetown Law Journal. He earned his undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, in 2004 from Duke University, where he was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. Prior to joining WilmerHale, Mr. Hazel clerked for the Honorable Dorothy W. Nelson, US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He also worked for a public interest law firm in Washington DC, focusing on environmental and natural resource issues.

Ms. Passamaneck rejoins WilmerHale after serving as career judicial law clerk in the US District Court for the District of Hawaii for the Honorable J. Michael Seabright. In that role, she regularly analyzed all facets of federal practice (pleadings, jurisdiction, venue, motions practice and trial) covering a wide range of substantive law including civil rights, employment and disability discrimination, contracts, intellectual property, and criminal law. While in Hawaii, she also was a lecturer in law at the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Prior to that, she was an associate in WilmerHale's New York office from 2003-2007. Ms. Passamaneck earned her law degree, magna cum laude, from the Boston University School of Law, where she was executive editor of the Boston University Law Review. She earned her undergraduate degree in Biology with a minor in Chemistry, cum laude, from New York University. Ms. Passamaneck is admitted to practice law in Colorado, Massachusetts and New York.

Over the past five years, innovators, entrepreneurs and business leaders have converged on Colorado, helping it to now routinely rank as a top-five state in the areas of best places to live, fastest growing economies, best business climates and most educated workforces. The attorneys in WilmerHale's Denver office help support that business growth, particularly in the areas of energy and environment, intellectual property, investigations and litigation, strategic response, and Native American law. 

WilmerHale's Denver office was founded in 2014 in part by partners Ken Salazar and Tom Strickland. The firm has 12 offices across the globe that boast renowned IP, litigation and controversy, securities, regulatory and government affairs, and transactional practices, with unique strengths in growing sectors such as energy, privacy and cybersecurity, education, and technology.