David W. Robbins
in Denver, Colorado
David Robbins is president and co-founder of Hill & Robbins, P.C., where his practice emphasizes the fields of water and natural-resources law, water quality, and environmental law. Prior to entering private practice, Mr. Robbins served in the U.S. Army (Captain, 1969-1972) and with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region VIII (1973-1974). He then joined the Colorado Attorney General's Office as a First Assistant Attorney General and head of the Natural Resources Section (1975-77), and was later appointed the Deputy Attorney General (1977-1978). Mr. Robbins represented the State of Colorado in a variety of interstate water matters, and served as counsel to the state engineer in adjudication proceedings and trials concerning basin-wide rules and regulations. He also represented the Colorado Water Conservation Board, and successfully defended the constitutionality of the state’s first instream flow protection law.
Since 1981, Mr. Robbins has served as general counsel to the Rio Grande Water Conservation District, where he has led the efforts to defeat speculative proposals to mine the ground water of Colorado’s San Luis Valley (see AWDI v. City of Alamosa), which ultimately resulted in Congressional action on a bill Mr. Robbins initially drafted to create the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. From 1985-2011, Mr. Robbins has served as counsel of record for the State of Colorado in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Kansas v. Colorado, No. 105 Original (October Term, 1985), involving the Arkansas River Compact, both before the special master and the Court. Mr. Robbins has served as general counsel to the Republican River Water Conservation District since its creation in 2004 and served as special counsel to the Southwestern Water Conservation District for over twenty years.
Mr. Robbins is a former member of the Colorado Water Conservation Board (1980-89) and served as its chairman in 1985-86. Mr. Robbins was a member of the Colorado River Salinity Control Forum and the Colorado River Salinity Control Advisory Council, representing Colorado from 1979 until 2003 and from 2008 up to the present. He served as the Forum’s vice chairman from 1981 to 1984 and from 2001 to 2003, and as its chairman from 1984 to 1990. He is a member of the Colorado Water Congress and has served on its board of directors for many years and as its President in 2005-06 and he was named the Colorado Water Leader of the Year in 2012. Mr. Robbins is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and the American Bar Foundation and serves on the board of directors of the Colorado Water Trust, of which he is a founding board member. He is a member of the American Bar Association and the Colorado Bar Association, and is a past chairman of the Water Law Section of the CBA.
Admitted to Practice
U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 9th and 10th Circuits
U.S. District Court for Colorado
- B.A., Stanford University (1966)
- J.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison (1969)
- Water and Natural Resources
- Water Quality