David Neslin

David Neslin

Of Counsel

David Neslin assists clients with energy and environmental matters, including policy issues involving federal, state, and local regulation, administrative proceedings before government agencies, and legal disputes arising under various resource and environmental laws, including the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act, Federal Land Policy and Management Act, and Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Act.

Prior to joining Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP, Mr. Neslin led the Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission for four years, where he oversaw record levels of oil and gas permitting, development, and production.  Under his leadership, the COGCC also completed bellwether rulemakings to tackle emerging regulatory issues, including those involving hydraulic fracturing, green completions, and waste management.

Prior to entering government service, Mr. Neslin was a partner in the Denver office of Arnold & Porter, where his practice centered around permitting and litigation on behalf of major development projects facing complex regulatory requirements and extensive public opposition.  While at Arnold & Porter, he had extensive dealings in the recreation industry, including representation of Vail Resorts in securing federal, state, and local approvals for the largest ski area expansion in Colorado history.

While with the State, Mr. Neslin served as chair of the State Review of Oil and Natural Gas Environmental Regulations, which conducts peer reviews of state environmental programs, and as Colorado’s representative to the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, which provides leadership on domestic oil and gas issues.  He also assisted the Ground Water Protection Council in developing and promoting the hydraulic fracturing website www.FracFocus.org.

Mr. Neslin has worked with federal and state legislators, regulators, industry representatives, environmental groups and other stakeholders to encourage responsible regulation of energy development, and he frequently writes and speaks on this subject. He has been listed in the Denver Business Journal’s Who’s Who in Energy from 2013-2017. Mr. Neslin has also been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the fields of Energy Law and Natural Resources Law and has earned the AV Preeminent® Peer Review Rating™ from Martindale-Hubbell®.


University of Washington, J.D., cum laude, Order of the Coif, 1983
University of Washington, B.A., 1980

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  • Government of Colombia:  Assisting a group of four government agencies in developing new environmental and technical requirements for the exploration and production of unconventional oil and gas.
  • Local regulation issues:  Representing oil and gas operators in connection with efforts by Colorado local governments to regulate development.
  • Sacramento Municipal Utility District: Represented a public utility in obtaining a $40 million judgment against the federal government for failure to timely remove spent nuclear fuel.
  • Telluride Ski Resort: Represented a ski resort in successfully resolving the largest wetlands enforcement action at that time in Colorado.
  • Loon Mountain Resort: Represented a ski resort in obtaining approval for major expansion and in resolving alleged Clean Water Act violations.
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