Mari Newman is a Partner at Killmer, Lane & Newman, LLP, where her practice emphasizes Civil Rights and Employment Law. Mari has been a strong advocate for LGBTQ rights for over two decades. Mari has represented numerous LGBTQ clients in cases involving discrimination in employment and public accommodations and was lead counsel in the case of Burns v. Hickenlooper, which helped establish marriage equality in Colorado. She was also instrumental in the passage of many of Colorado’s LGBTQ civil rights protections, including those contained in the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act and the Denver Anti-Discrimination Ordinance. Mari serves on the board of directors for the Colorado LGBT Bar Association and Bar Association Foundation, and previously served as a member of the Denver Mayor’s LGBT Commission for over a decade and through two mayoral administrations, and continues to teach regarding LGBTQ rights. She also serves on the board of directors of the Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center and the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association.
Mari has received the Colorado LGBT Bar Association Foundation’s Attorney of the Year Award and has been recognized as the Colorado Legal Initiatives Project’s Barrister of the Year. She was honored with a Harvey Milk Lifetime Leadership Award by Colorado State Representative Paul Rosenthal. Mari also received the Denver Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce’s Entrepreneurial Woman of the year. Mari has been honored with the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado’s Carle E. Whitehead Award, celebrating those individuals who “stand on principle to defend our civil liberties.” Mari was recognized with the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association’s (“CTLA’s”) Access to Justice Award, honoring “perseverance, courage and character shown over and over in cases of extraordinary circumstances.” She received the Southern Center for Human Rights’ Frederick Douglass Human Rights Award for her representation of persons detained at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. She was a recipient of the Dr. Martin Luther King Humanitarian Award from the Greater Metro Denver Ministerial Alliance, as well as the Shorter Community AME Shoes of Justice Award honoring those who have “walked the walk of justice.” Mari also received the Colorado Women’s Bar Association Foundation’s “Raising the Bar” award honoring women lawyers who have made a difference and raised the bar for other women.
Mari has repeatedly been listed by The Best Lawyers in America® in the areas of Civil Rights Law; Employment Law-Individuals; and Litigation-Labor and Employment, and was twice recognized as the Lawyer of the Year in Denver for Employment Law-Individuals. Mari has consistently been voted among the Top 100 Lawyers and Top 50 Women Lawyers in Colorado. She has repeatedly been designated as a Colorado Super Lawyer and as a Top Lawyer in the areas of Civil Rights and Labor and Employment Law by 5280 Publishing. Mari has been named as a Lawyer of the Year and one of seven Top Women Attorneys by Law Week Colorado. She was twice voted Law Week Colorado’s “Barrister’s Best” Plaintiff’s Employment Lawyer by Law Week Colorado. Mari received the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association’s Case of the Year Award in a case against the Colorado Department of Corrections on behalf of a female inmate who had been raped by a prison guard.
In her younger days, Mari was recognized as the CTLA’s Outstanding Young Trial Lawyer of the Year. She also received the Denver Bar Foundation’s Davis Award, presented to a Denver lawyer under 40 who combines excellence as a lawyer with creative civic, cultural, educational and charitable leadership, and was named as one of the Denver Business Journal’s “Forty Under Forty,” recognizing 40 outstanding young professionals for their success and community contributions.
Martindale-Hubbell rated Mari as AV Preeminent, the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards. Mari was also honored as a Fellow of the Colorado Bar Foundation, a designation bestowed upon no more than five percent of the lawyers in Colorado for “outstanding dedication to the welfare of the community, the traditions of the profession and the maintenance and advancement of the objectives of the Colorado Bar Association.