Adrian “Jay” Leonard IV


Denver, Colorado

Phone: 303.299.8226

Fax: 303.298.0940


  • Juris Doctor, Syracuse University College of Law, 2010
    • magna cum laude
    • Order of the Coif
    • Executive Editor, Syracuse Law Review
    • Associate Editor, The Labor Lawyer Journal (ABA)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Spanish, Colorado State University, 2006

Adrian “Jay” Leonard is a member in Sherman & Howard’s Litigation department. He prides himself on working closely with clients in a wide range of industries to solve problems creatively and efficiently both before and after disputes arise. Jay has experience representing and advising clients, both domestically and internationally, on business issues and in actions brought in both state and federal courts, and in arbitration proceedings concerning complex commercial disputes, intellectual property issues, employment matters, business tort actions, and insurance recovery efforts. Jay also advises clients in the brewing industry with regard to business formation, employment, and intellectual property matters and is Sherman & Howard’s point person for the firm’s allied trade memberships with the Brewers Association and Colorado Brewers Guild.


  • Represents clients in business disputes at the trial and appellate levels in state and federal courts.
  • Represents businesses and sovereign nations in international commercial disputes governed by the rules of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb), and other arbitration institutions.
  • Represents lenders in proceedings for various collection matters and pursuit of claims to recover secured collateral.
  • Advises clients with regard to commercial and residential lease options and approaches, and representing landlords or tenants in commercial and residential lease disputes.
  • Represents and advises businesses of varying types, sizes, and industries with regard to trade secret protection efforts and other intellectual property protection matters (including disputes over non-compete covenants).
  • Represents directors, officers, and businesses in efforts to recover wrongfully withheld amounts under D&O insurance policies.
  • Represents creditors and bankruptcy trustees in bankruptcy adversary proceedings to prevent discharge of fraudulently obtained debt or to recover fraudulently transferred assets.



  • Represented healthcare company in connection with hospitalist joint venture dispute.
  • Managed Forcible Entry and Detainer practice for regional property management company.
  • Represented owner of historic and iconic Denver building in real estate control and possession dispute.
  • Represented sovereign nation during dispute with government contractor in arbitration seated in London.
  • In dispute concerning ownership of intellectual property, represented non-profit organization specializing in improvement of education for young women in developing countries.
  • Represented president of local bank in fiduciary duty dispute and bankruptcy plan.
  • Represented oil and gas exploration company in joint operations dispute in arbitration seated in London.
  • Assisted investor clients in seeking judgment and collection on wrongfully withheld investments in and loan amounts provided to regional gas exploration company.
  • Represented executives in dispute between former employer and new employer with regard to trade secret misappropriation claims.



  • Represented craft brewery in International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR) arbitration dispute concerning defective products and warranty claims.
  • Acted as general counsel to start-up, large-scale brewpub operation in Colorado, including negotiating leases, drafting vendor agreements, general employment matters, drafting of manufacturing and service contracts, and intellectual property protection efforts.

Publications & Presentations




  • Differences Between Alternating Proprietorships and Contract Brewing – Do You Have the Right Permits and Licenses?
    Business of Beer Series | December 2017
  • Drug Testing – What Breweries Need to Know About Testing Employees’ Marijuana Use Under Colorado and Federal Law
    Business of Beer Series | May 2017
  • Trademark Legal Issues for Craft Brewing Executives
    Business of Beer Series | February 2016



Professional Activities

  • Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (ACIArb)
  • ICC Young Arbitrators Forum
  • ICDR Young and International Group
  • LCIA Young International Arbitration Group
  • Colorado Bar Association
  • Denver Bar Association
  • Faculty of Federal Advocate



  • Board of Advisors, Colorado Succeeds
    • A group of business leaders of Colorado, who have joined forces to make sure the education system works better and smarter for all the people of Colorado.
  • Colorado Brewers Guild
    • A non-profit trade association promoting and protecting the Colorado craft brewing industry.
  • Former Member, Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children
    • Organization that supports and helps underrepresented abused and neglected children in the city court system.


  • Super Lawyers, “Rising Star,” Litigation, Colorado (2020)
  • Denver Business Journal, “40 Under 40 Nominee,” Colorado (2018)