U.S. Attorney for Colorado Announces Resignation to Return to Private Law Practice

DENVER (LAWFUEL) – United States Attorney for Colorado Troy A. Eid today announced plans to resign from office and return to private law practice effective midnight on Monday, January 19th.

Eid, an environmental attorney and Adjunct Professor in American Indian Law at the University of Colorado School of Law, will be a litigation partner in the national law firm Greenberg Traurig LLP, whose Denver branch office includes the new Speaker of the Colorado state House of Representatives, Terrance Carroll. Eid was previously a litigation partner in the firm from 2003-06, where he was rated as one of the best environmental attorneys in the United States by CHAMBERS USA.

“Our office has never been stronger than it is today, and now serves the entire state of Colorado as never before,” Eid said.

“We carefully set our priorities to keep faith with the American people – and to address the specific needs of communities across Colorado. Then we followed through. The new and stronger relationships we’ve forged will serve our state well for years to come.”

Accomplishments by Colorado U.S. Attorney’s Office since Eid’s appointment in August 2006 include:

Increasing federal criminal prosecutions in every region of Colorado, including Denver and the Front Range, Northern and Southern Colorado, and the Western Slope.

Quadrupling statewide federal prosecutions of child pornographers and sexual predators, and working with the U.S. Marshal’s Service to implement Colorado’s national Adam Walsh Act program to apprehend unregistered sex offenders.

Earning the U.S. Department of Justice’s highest awards in each of the last two years – a first for Colorado. This includes the insider-trading conviction of former Qwest Chief Executive Officer Joseph Nacchio (2007); and Operation Central, the largest international environmental enforcement action ever undertaken to stop the smuggling of endangered sea turtles (2008).

Spearheading the largest statewide law enforcement operation in Colorado history with the Denver Metro Gang Task Force. This April 2007 operation, led by 650 officers, resulted in 85 federal grand jury indictments – dismantling two of the state’s most violent drug gangs and putting Willie Clark, alleged murderer of Denver Broncos cornerback Darrent Williams, behind bars.

Battling corporate criminals throughout Colorado. This includes the longest corporate fraud sentence in U.S. history – 330 years and the forfeiture of $38 million in stolen property, including the historic Redstone Castle Hotel in Garfield County – in last year’s conviction of investment scam leader Norman Schmidt for bilking 1,000 victims of $56 million.

Creating statewide task forces in the Colorado U.S. Attorney’s Office to combat health care fraud, the export of military and controlled technologies, and government procurement fraud.

Working with the FBI, Secret Service, and thousands of federal, state and local agencies to successfully plan and execute the largest national security event ever in Colorado: The 2008 Democratic National Convention.

Pioneering Colorado’s nationally recognized “Criminal Justice in Indian Country” program to improve public safety on and near Indian Reservations by training more than 400 officers to fight domestic violence and other crimes.

Obtaining a record $9 million settlement from a private water company to restore the Lulu Creek watershed in Rocky Mountain National Park, damaged when its irrigation ditch breached. The result prompted The Denver Post to write: “We applaud the tenacity of the Department of Justice and U.S. Attorney Troy Eid in reaching an agreement in this difficult case.” (May 7, 2008)

After his appointment to the office by President Bush in 2006 following unanimous U.S. Senate confirmation, Eid’s immediate challenge was to reform the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s budget and internal operations. Nearly one in five prosecutor, paralegal and legal staff positions were vacant when Eid took office, with extremely limited funds available to fill any of them.

“The critical first step to strengthening external credibility was getting our own house in order,” Eid said. “This meant gaining control of our own office budget and managing the taxpayers’ money with much greater care by reforming our Administrative Division.”

To increase his own knowledge of the arcane federal budget process, Eid successfully lobbied to be appointed to the Attorney General’s national Advisory Subcommittee on Management and Budget.

“The credibility this created in Washington has enabled our office to compete successfully in various national competitions where the Department of Justice has made a select number of new, fully funded attorney and non-attorney positions available,” Eid said. “Our strategy worked, and we began winning more money and new positions for Colorado that might otherwise have gone to other states.”

As a direct result, Eid noted that the U.S. Attorney’s Office has increased staffing and criminal prosecutions in all three offices – Denver, Durango and Grand Junction – while handling a growing number of complex civil cases and appeals.

The office’s progress is detailed in a recently completed, top-to-bottom evaluation of the entire U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado, conducted by 26 career Justice Department professionals from across the United States. That process, formally known as Evaluation and Review Staff (EARS), is required of all 93 U.S. Attorney’s Offices every five years. The Department’s EARS evaluation team surveyed every employee in Eid’s office and conducted confidential interviews with nearly 200 local, state, tribal and federal leaders.

“The evaluators’ report confirms what many of those same leaders have repeatedly said publicly: Our office has the right people, the right priorities, and is headed on the right track,” Eid said. “I pledged to leave this office even better than I found it, and thanks to our stakeholders and colleagues throughout the Department, we’ve succeeded beyond even my highest expectations.”

An advocate for strengthening criminal justice on and surrounding American Indian reservations, Eid has personally taught law enforcement officers from 35 different Indian Tribes across the West since February 2007.

Eid vowed to continue this work in the private sector and announced he will be joining the Board of Directors of the University of Denver’s Four Corners Program in Durango. The program, part of DU’s Graduate School of Social Work, is strengthening the relationship between law enforcement and social services for victims of domestic violence.

From 1999 to 2003, Eid served on the cabinet of former Colorado Governor Bill Owens – first as chief legal counsel to the Governor, then as director of the state’s Department of Personnel and Administration – the Chief Administrative Officer for Colorado’s $13 billion budget – responsible for finance, technology, and more than 60,000 state employees. He earned a reputation as a reformer, receiving the Government Business Advocate of the Year Award from the Denver Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and from the United States Chamber of Commerce, in 2003.

In 1994-99, Eid was chief operating officer of one of the world’s largest information technology research consortium, directing engineering project teams in North America, Asia and Europe.

Called the National Information Infrastructure Testbed or NIIT, this 70-company consortium was founded by AT&T Corp, Hewlett-Packard Company, IBM and others to accelerate advanced Internet applications in environmental sciences, health care and manufacturing. Prior to that, Eid was an associate attorney at Holme Roberts & Owen LLP in Denver.

A graduate of Stanford University and the University of Chicago Law School, Eid clerked for the Honorable Edith Jones, Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He grew up in Jefferson County and graduated from Wheat Ridge High School.

The former chair of the Colorado State Board of Ethics, Eid has served on numerous Governor’s task forces, including the commission that reviewed the law enforcement response to the mass shootings at Columbine High School in 1999. He has also been a board member of various non-profit organizations, including the Latin American Educational Foundation, the Legal Aid Foundation of Colorado, the Denver Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the Navajo Nation Bar Association.

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