Michael J. Holden
Holden Willits, PLC
Managing Member
Two North Central Avenue, Suite 1760, Phoenix, Arizona 85004
Phone:  (602) 508-6220
Fax:  (602) 508-6211
Email:  mholden@holdenwillits.com

81700 - Michael J. Holden

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Michael J. Holden

Mr. Holden has more than 35 years of experience representing clients in construction law matters, as well as general commercial matters.  He was voted Construction Lawyer of the Year (Phoenix) for 2010 and 2013 by U.S. News – Best Lawyers of America™, and has been repeatedly ranked as one of the top 50 lawyers in Arizona.  He regularly speaks and writes on construction law issues for national and local industry groups, and has been a recognized advocate for the construction industry at the Arizona Legislature.  He is an adjunct professor at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University, where he has taught construction law for several years, and he has also been a guest lecturer at the Del E. Webb School of Construction at Arizona State University.  He represents general contractors, subcontractors, sureties, architects, design professionals, lenders, insurers, and owners in all manner of construction law issues, including advice and counsel, dispute resolution, arbitration, and litigation.

Education

  • Duke University School of Law, J.D. 1980
    Editor, Duke Law Journal
  • University of Michigan, A.B. with high honors, 1977

Awards and Recognition                                                                                     

  • American College of Construction Lawyers (2010-present)
  • U.S. News – Best Lawyers of America™ – Construction Lawyer of the Year (Phoenix) (2010 and 2013)
  • U.S. News – Best Lawyers of America™ – Construction Law (Phoenix) (2007-2016)
  • Southwest SuperLawyers™ – Construction Law (2007-2016)
  • Southwest SuperLawyers™ – Top 50 Lawyers in Arizona (2011, 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016)

Professional Experience                                                                                    

  • Holden Willits PLC, Phoenix, Arizona
    Managing Member, May 2010 to present
  • Holden Willits Murphy PLC, Phoenix, Arizona
    Managing Member, September 2007 to April 2010
  • Holden Brodman PLC, Phoenix, Arizona
    Managing Member, November 2001 to September 2007
  • Holden Walker PLC, Phoenix, Arizona
    Founder and Managing Member, May 2000 to October 2001
  • Lewis and Roca LLP, Phoenix, Arizona
    Associate, May 1980 to May 1985
    Partner, June 1985 to April 2000
    Chair, Construction Law Practice Group, 1991 to 2000                     

Publications                                                                                                

  • Co-authored with Betty Hum and David Cantelme, “Developments in Change Order Law,” published in 1999 Wiley Construction Law Update, Aspen Law and Business (1999).
  • Co-authored with Betty Hum and David Cantelme, “Arizona Chapter,” published in Fifty State Public Construction Contracting, Wiley Law Publications (1996).
  • Co-authored with Betty Hum and David Cantelme, “Recent Caselaw Developments in West Region,” published in 1998 Wiley Construction Law Update, Aspen Law and Business (1998).
  • Contributing author, Arizona Construction Law Practice Manual, State Bar of Arizona (2002).
  • Co-Author, 2010 Cumulative Supplement, Horne on Arizona Construction Law, State Bar of Arizona (2010).
  • Contributing author, “Arizona Prompt Payment Laws,” published in Arizona Construction Law Practice Manual (2nd Edition), State Bar of Arizona (2011).
  • Contributing author, Road Trips, Society of American Baseball Research (2004).
  • Editor and contributing author, Mining Towns to Major Leagues, A History of Arizona Baseball, Society of American Baseball Research (1999)
  • Contributing author, Vineline (Official Publication of the Chicago Cubs)
  • Publisher, Arizona Fall League Media Guide (1995-2000, 2003-2006)

Seminars and Speaking Engagements

  • Adjunct Professor, Arizona State University School of Law (2005 to 2016), “Construction Law”
  • Guest Lecturer, Del E. Webb School of Construction, Arizona State University
  • Frequent Lecturer and Presenter at Construction Law Programs
  • Presented over 250 lectures and seminars on a wide variety of construction industry topics over the past 35 years to varied audiences, including the American Bar Association Construction Industry Forum, the National Association of Credit Managers, the National Association of Electrical Distributors, and the State Bar of Arizona
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Damages in Construction Litigation” (November 1989)
  • Seminar Co-Chair and Speaker, “Building a Construction Case from the Ground Up” (January 2004)
  • Seminar Co-Chair and Speaker, “New Pueblo after 20 Years” (February 2005)
  • Seminar Co-Chair and Speaker, “Litigating the Multi-Party Construction Case” (February 2006)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “What Happens When A Construction Owner Fails to Perform Its Contractual Obligations” (February 2007)
  • Seminar Co-Chair and Speaker, “Reinforcing Your Legal Foundation” (February 2008)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Close Inspection of Recent Arizona Construction Law Cases” (February 2009)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Arizona Construction Law 2010” (February 2010)
  • Speaker, “Arizona Construction Law Practice Manual Seminar” (October 2010)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Mastering Construction Law” (February 2011)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Key Issues in Construction Litigation” (March 2012)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Warranties on Construction Projects:  An In Depth Look at Cutting Edge Issues” (March 2014)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Lost in the Rubble:  A Search for Neglected Arizona Construction Law Decisions” (April 2015)
  • Seminar Chair and Speaker, “Arizona Construction Law:  A Survey of Recent Developments” (March 2016)

Bar Activities

  • State Bar of Arizona, Construction Law Section
    Founder and First Chair (1986-1988)
    Executive Committee Member (1986-1990)
  • American Bar Association, Forum on the Construction Industry (1986-present)
  • American Bar Association, Fidelity and Surety Committee, (1982-present)

Industry and Community Activities

  • Arizona Builders’ Alliance (formerly Associated General Contractors, Arizona Building Chapter)
    Member (1986-present)
    General Counsel (2009-present)
    Member Legal Advisory Council (1986-present)
  • American Subcontractors Association of Arizona
    Member (1986-present)
    Chair, Legal Advisory Council (1993-1998, 2006-2009)
    Board of Directors (1994-1995, 2000-2001)

Legislative Contributions and Advocacy

  • Contributing Drafter, Amendments to Arizona Mechanics’ and Materialmens’ Lien Laws, enacted in 1992 and 1998
  • Selected as construction industry representative in 1992 to negotiate final revisions to lien law amendments
  • Worked as legal advisor for the Arizona Builders’ Alliance and American Subcontractors Association before the Arizona Legislature’s Lien Law Task Force in 1997
  • Drafted 1998 lien law amendments and worked with construction industry lobbyists in negotiating changes and final revisions
  • Primary Drafter, Arizona’s Stop Notice Remedy (A.R.S. §§ 32-1051 et seq.), enacted in 1998
  • Advocated Stop Notice legislation before the Arizona Legislature’s Lien Law Task Force in Summer 1997
  • Drafted Stop Notice legislation at the direction of the Task Force
  • Legal advisor for construction industry groups during lobbying and passage of the Stop Notice statute in 1998
  • Contributing Drafter, Arizona’s Private Sector Prompt Payment Law (A.R.S. §§ 32-1129 et seq.), enacted in 2000
  • Worked with representatives of the American Subcontractors Association of Arizona in drafting and lobbying for legislation
  • Primary Drafter, 2010 Revisions to Arizona’s Private Sector Prompt Payment Law (Senate Bill 1375), signed by Arizona Governor on May 4, 2010
  • Involved in drafting and lobbying for significant revisions to the prompt pay law in capacity as General Counsel for the Arizona Builders’ Alliance
  • Testified before Arizona legislative committees in favor of legislation
  • Member, Ad Hoc Arizona Legislative Committee on Modernizing Arizona’s 20-Day Notice Process, October to December 2015 (Appointed by David Gowan, Speaker of Arizona House of Representatives)
  • Participated as committee member in public hearings considering changes to Arizona lien law