Remember that open U.S. attorney slot in Denver that the Trump administration had to fill? Still open. But it looks like the president’s people are getting closer to making a pick.
A source who has been involved in the selection process says the White House has narrowed it down to four finalists. All are familiar names in Denver’s legal community; some have been floated before in connection with the candidate search. Two are now with Denver-based global kidney dialysis giant DaVita HealthCare Partners, whose CEO, Kent Thiry, is pondering a bid for governor next year.
The White House’s eventual nominee will require the U.S. Senate’s confirmation, as well.
In alphabetical order (because we haven’t a clue if any of the four has a leg up on the others), the finalists are: David Blake, Colorado’s chief deputy attorney general; Jason Dunn, political point man and partner at power law firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck; James Hearty, senior vice president and chief compliance officer at DaVita, and Richard Hosley, DaVita’s associate general counsel and vice president for litigation.
Blake, who previously was an attorney with the U.S. Justice Department, and Dunn, who has served as Colorado’s deputy attorney general and assistant solicitor general, are prominent in Colorado political circles. Hearty and Hosley also previously put in lengthy tenures with the Justice Department.
DaVita — whose high-profile chief exec recently was savaged by HBO comedian and satirist John Oliver — agreed to pay $389 million in 2014 to settle a criminal and civil anti-kickback investigation by the Justice Department.
“This case involved a sophisticated scheme to compensate doctors illegally for referring patients to DaVita’s dialysis centers,” then-U.S. Attorney for Colorado John Walsh said at the time.
Walsh stepped down last year, creating the opening the White House is now aiming to fill. Bob Troyer has been acting U.S. attorney in the interim.