Amy Padden joins Democratic primary for Colorado attorney general

Author: Joey Bunch - August 11, 2017 - Updated: March 15, 2018

Amy PaddenAmy Padden, Democratic candidate for attorney general. (Photo courtesy of the campaign)

Federal prosecutor Amy Padden said Friday afternoon she’s joining the race for state attorney general next year, becoming the fifth candidate in the Democratic primary, so far.

As the executive assistant U.S. attorney, Padden was the third in command for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Colorado, where she in charge of the Administrative and Asset Recovery divisions, her announcement said.

She formerly worked in the Consumer Protection Section of the state Attorney General’s Office, as well.

“I intend to continue that public service as our state’s next attorney general, and I will work tirelessly to increase public safety and ensure that consumers are protected,” Padden said in a statement.

She joins a Democratic primary field that includes state Rep. Joe Salazar, former assistant attorney general Michael Dougherty,former University of Colorado Law School dean Phil Weiser and Denver lawyer Brad Levin.

They are theoretically vying to take on incumbent Republican Cynthia Coffman, who could announce a run for governor, instead, which would throw open a Republican primary race, as well.

Padden’s announcement cites “experience ranges from cross-examining terrorists in court, to working on pressing issues of criminal justice reform, to managing a large office of prosecutors and staff.”

Her role with the U.S. Attorney’s Office includes hiring and budgetary decisions, as well as daily management of nearly 200 employees in offices in Denver, Grand Junction and Durango.

Padden moved to Colorado in 1998 to work as an associate in the law firm now known as Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell, where she became a partner 2001.

In 2005, she was hired by then Attorney General John Suthers, a Republican who is now the mayor of Colorado Springs.

Padden is a graduate of the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., and the Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. She and her family live in Denver.

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch is the senior political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has a 31-year career in journalism, including the last 15 in Colorado. He was part of the Denver Post team that won the Pulitzer Prize in 2013 and is a two-time Pulitzer finalist. His resume includes covering high school sports, the environment, the casino industry and civil rights in the South, as well as a short stint at CNN.