March 9, 2021

#012: Phil Weiser - Colorado Attorney General

In this episode I speak with Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser about his career in public service. Attorney General Weiser is a graduate of Swarthmore College and NYU Law School. After graduation he clerked for Judge Ebel on the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in Colorado and then on the United States Supreme Court for Justice White and Justice Ginsburg.

After completing his three clerkships he worked at the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division for two years before returning to Colorado and entering academia at the University of Colorado Law School where he worked for ten years teaching and directing the Silicon Flatirons Center. After that, he returned to DC to work as the Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust at the Department of Justice under President Obama and then as a Senior Advisor at the National Economic Council before returning to the University of Colorado where he taught for ten more years including five five as dean. In May 2017 he successfully ran for Attorney General of the State of Colorado. 

In our conversation we discuss his path from law clerk to government attorney to academic and then ultimately state attorney general and the skills along the way that led him to success at each step: a desire to serve, a commitment to empathy, a focus on the task at hand, and a helpful dose of willingness to take risks and see where serendipity took him. 

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