Blake, Melissa Kuipers

Dubbed "The Negotiator" by ColoradoBiz Magazine, Melissa Kuipers Blake is a leading lobbyist and seasoned political strategist with more than 18 years of national legislative experience. Melissa leads negotiations for her clients between members of the Colorado Senate, House of Representatives and Governor and is known for her issue knowledge, political strategy development and campaign fundraising prowess. When it comes to behind the scenes negotiations and issue development, Melissa is second to none. Melissa also serves as chair of the firm’s Emerging Regulated Industries (ERI) practice group which assists state and local governments and employers throughout the country as they navigate the complex world of medical and recreational marijuana legalization. Having worked in Colorado politics since day one of recreational marijuana legalization, Melissa has a unique perspective on the industry and regularly shares that expertise with those entities impacted by marijuana from a statutory, regulatory, compliance and workplace perspective.

At the core of Melissa’s government relations practice is her reputation for integrity, honesty and professionalism. Melissa is a close and trusted confidante to a number of key members of the House and Senate, as well as several statewide elected officials. She can often be found in the war rooms of multiple campaigns and has helped influence the outcome of many elections through her advice and strategy development. While Melissa’s influence in the halls of the Colorado Capitol is extensive, she also maintains significant federal relationships on Capitol Hill with several U.S. senators and members of the House of Representatives from all parts of the country. 

Melissa regularly provides commentary to state and local media on a variety of legislative issues and is often tapped to speak at state and national conferences to share her political and legislative endeavors.  She is widely recognized by local and national media for her government relations successes, including being named one of the Denver Business Journal’s “Top Forty under 40” at the age of 29, being named a Rising Star in 5280 Magazine’s 2014 list of the most powerful people in Denver, being picked as a Top 25 Young Professional by ColoradoBiz Magazine in 2015 and, most recently, being named a Top Lawyer in Government Relations/Lobbying in 5280 Magazine's 2016 and 2017 Top Lawyer's List.

Prior to joining Brownstein, Melissa was the vice president of Government Relations and Communications for the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association, where she represented 270 new franchised auto dealers in Colorado. Prior to her work with the automobile industry, Melissa served as the legislative director for the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association, was a legislative aide in the Florida Senate and worked for several years in the Florida Legislature for the Rubin Group, based in Ft. Lauderdale.

In her own time, Melissa serves as the CEO of Baking for the Troops, a Colorado-based non-profit which prepares and sends homemade care packages of baked goods to members of the U.S. military deployed throughout the world. Since Melissa founded the organization in 2009, she and her team of volunteers have sent more than 2,000 boxes of cards and baked goods to military personnel in countless regions of the globe, including Afghanistan and Iraq.

Melissa is licensed to practice law in Colorado, Florida and Washington, D.C.

Representative Matters
  • Crafted and passed legislation on behalf of DealerTrack Processing Services to authorize the Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles to implement an electronic lien and titling process as well as an electronic temporary tags and vehicle registration process. Organized a broad coalition of stakeholders including the Department of Motor Vehicles, County Clerks Association and new and used car dealers in order to pass and implement this expansive legislation.

  • Established a first-of-its-kind loan guarantee and rebate program for the Colorado Movie and Television Industry in order to attract entertainment productions to Colorado. Recently secured $5.3M in state funding for the rebate program which resulted in Quentin Tarantino choosing Telluride, Colorado as the location for directing his 8th feature film, The Hateful Eight.

  • Selected by the Colorado Republican Committee Chairman to serve as General Counsel to the Denver 2016 Host Committee in Denver’s effort to secure the Republican National Convention in 2016.

News & Events
Community

Board of Directors, Colorado Business Committee for the Arts

Board of Directors, Colorado Civil Justice League, 2010 – present

Founder, Baking for the Troops, 2009 – present

Founder, Lunch with Our Leaders, University of Miami School of Law, 2004 – 2005

Publications & Presentations
Education
  • J.D., 2005, University of Miami School of Law
  • B.S., 2002, with honors, Florida State University
Admissions
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • District of Columbia, 2012
Recognition

5280 Top Lawyers, Government Relations, 2016-2017

Top 25 Young Professional, Colorado Biz Magazine, 2015

Most Powerful People, Rising Star, 5280 Magazine

Private Sector Co-Chair, American Legislative Exchange Council, 2013 – present

Colorado Convention Chair, 2012 Republican National Convention

Top 40 under 40, Denver Business Journal, 2010

University of Miami School of Law Alumni Spotlight, 2010

Editor in Chief, University of Miami School of Law Res Ipsa Loquitur

Membership

Government and Public Policy Advocacy Committee, The Florida Bar, 2017-2018

Cabinet, Denver Film Society, 2011 – present

National Association of Dealer Counsel, 2009 – present

American Bar Association. 2011 – present

Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry, Government Affairs Council, 2008 – present

Florida Bar Association, 2006 – present 

Colorado Women's Bar Association, 2011 – present

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