Michael P. Smith

Michael P. Smith



Strategic thinker skilled in navigating complex environmental, land, and water issues. Known by clients for insightful solutions and negotiating skills. 

Mike Smith helps clients untangle increasingly complex regulatory regimes and resolve disputes. Clients turn to Mike for help navigating a range of challenging natural resources matters, often involving water rights, water quality, solid and hazardous waste, protected species, land use, floodplains, and oil and gas royalty disputes. His diverse practice spans regulatory compliance, rulemaking, enforcement actions, transactions, and litigation. Representative clients include water and wastewater utilities, project developers, mining companies, oil and gas companies, lenders, and investors.

Mike maintains a diverse pro bono practice that includes representing veterans and military service members in litigation and representing nonprofit entities in formation, operations, and litigation, among other matters. He also volunteers as a board member for the Mile High Youth Corps to support youth development in land, energy, and water conservation; construction; and healthcare career pathways across 23 Colorado counties.

Mike is a former infantry captain in the U.S. Army, where he served two combat tours in Iraq. Using his fluency in French, Mike also briefly served as a peace support operations trainer in two African countries to support peacekeeping missions in Somalia.

Insights & Publications



  • J.D., 2015, Georgetown University Law Center
  • M.B.A., 2011, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs
  • B.S., 2006, United States Military Academy at West Point, with honors

Previous Experience

U.S. Army, 4th Infantry Division


  • Colorado
  • Wyoming
  • U.S. District Court, District of Colorado


American Bar Association

Colorado Bar Association

Denver Bar Association

Community Involvement


Board of Directors, Mile High Youth Corps

Defense Council Member, Truman National Security Project

Volunteer Attorney, American Bar Association Military Pro Bono Project

Environmental Sustainability Committee, Colorado Bar Association, 2016-2017

Governing Council Member & Volunteer Committee Member, American Red Cross – Behind the Red, 2016-2017



Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America, 2024

Brownstein Mentor Award, 2021

Jeffrey S. Rugg Pro Bono Award, 2020

Impact Denver 2017, Denver Metro Chamber Leadership Foundation

ABA Military Pro Bono Project Outstanding Services Award

Editor-in-Chief, Georgetown International Environmental Law Review (now Georgetown Environmental Law Review)

Georgetown Global Law Scholar

Georgetown Law Exceptional Pro Bono Pledge Honoree