Michael J. Cook
Michael J. Cook


Phone: 303.299.8200

Fax: 303.298.0940


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Legal Secretary

Denise Davis

Areas of Emphasis


Litigation, Trials and Appeals


  • Juris Doctor, University of Denver Sturm College of Law, 1977
    • Order of the Coif
    • Member, University of Denver Law Journal
  • Bachelor of Arts in English Literature, College of Idaho, 1971

Michael Cook is a trial lawyer and mediator acting on behalf of businesses and public entities involved in the construction industry. He has over thirty years of experience in all aspects of construction law, including jury and bench trials, arbitration, mediation, contract and claim preparation, contract negotiation and government contracts. Mike is a member in Sherman & Howard’s Denver office and was the chair of the firm’s Construction Industry Practice Group. He has been recognized by his peers as one of the outstanding construction law attorneys in the region.

Representative Matters

Dispute Resolution

  • Obtained a $20 million jury verdict, including $9 million in punitive damages, for a general contractor on an airport runway construction project at the Denver International Airport.
  • Lead counsel for City in litigation against general contractor and pipe manufacturer involving a high pressure water pipeline. $19.5 million settlement obtained for City; general contractor received no compensation on its $10 million differing site conditions claim against City.
  • Claim preparation and litigation through trial of $5.5 million claim by a general contractor for delays and cost overruns on a railroad tunnel ventilation project. $5.5 million judgment obtained for the general contractor.
  • Claim preparation and successful mediation of $9 million in claims for general contractor on San Francisco high-rise retirement home.
  • Successful mediation of $8 million claim for general contractor on steel manufacturing facility.
  • Represented general contractor in successful negotiation of a $6 million claim on a resort hotel project.

Contract Preparation and Negotiation

  • Prepared CMGC contract documents for $90 million water treatment plant expansion.
  • Prepared $17 million design-build agreement for owner renovating downtown Denver high-rise and $10 million design-build agreement for owner on an operations center.
  • Negotiated and prepared joint venture agreements for contractors on multi-million dollar construction projects.
  • Prepared design services agreement and construction contract for public owner on $30 million justice center complex and for numerous small projects.
  • Prepared construction documents and related agreements for quasi-governmental entity on multi-million dollar public-private construction project and for contractor on public-private buy-design-build-operate water treatment facility.
Professional Activities
  • Member, American Arbitration Association’s Construction industry panel of arbitrators and mediators
  • Member, American Bar Association’s Forum Committee on the Construction Industry
  • Frequent lecturer to numerous construction industry groups and professional organizations on construction law matters and has authored articles on construction issues.
Honors and Awards
  • Lawyer of the Year – Construction (Denver, CO)
    Best Lawyers of America
  • Best Lawyer – Construction Litigation
    Best Lawyers in America
  • Super Lawyer – Construction Litigation
    Colorado Super Lawyers
  • Senior Statespeople – Real Estate: Construction (Colorado)
    Chambers USA
  • All Star, Super All Star, and MVP
    BTI Client Service
  • Individual of the Year
    Colorado Lawyers Committee
    1993 and 2004
  • Fellow
    American Bar Foundation