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Alicia Lopez

Alicia C. Lopez

Alicia is an experienced appellate and trial attorney, practicing in the areas of civil rights, sexual abuse, and criminal defense.  She has been recognized for providing “excellent advocacy” by multiple federal appellate judges.  Alicia treats each legal brief and oral argument as an opportunity to tell her client’s story with rigor and understanding.  She is regularly sought out by other lawyers for her skill in analyzing complex legal issues and writing about them in an accessible way.

As appellate counsel, Alicia has obtained uncommon civil rights victories for plaintiffs in the Tenth Circuit, including by securing the reversal of a lower court’s dismissal of a wrongful death case against Santa Fe County, leading to a seven-figure settlement for the victim’s children.  She has obtained a new sentencing trial for a client facing decades in prison, taken a felony case to committee before the U.S. Supreme Court, and won rare grants of early release and other post-conviction relief for clients facing many more years of incarceration.

At the trial court level, Alicia played a major role in securing multimillion-dollar settlement awards for eleven victims of a serial predator New Mexico schoolteacher, and several victims’ lawsuits were saved from dismissal by her development of a novel defense to the statute of limitations relating to their claims.  She is equally experienced litigating actions for excessive force and wrongful death.  Alicia also represents clients on a variety of criminal charges, from minor drug offenses to violent felonies.  When clients choose to enter a plea, Alicia helps them get the lowest possible sentence by meticulously demonstrating to the court how their offenses occurred in the larger context of their personal histories, generational trauma, and other factors.  As a result of her efforts, she has obtained sentences of time served for clients who potentially faced 20 or more years in federal prison.

Most recently, Alicia was Of Counsel for a Bay Area civil rights law firm with a national practice.  There, she represented incarcerated persons from historically disadvantaged groups in challenges to their conditions of confinement, as well as employees in discrimination suits against some of the most powerful corporations in America.

Alicia is a graduate of Yale Law School.  She earned her M.A. and B.A. with Highest Honors in English from Stanford University, where she won several awards for her writing.  She has served as judicial clerk to Judge Leonard P. Stark, then of the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, and Judges Judith Herrera and Martha Vazquez of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico.  She has been a Visiting Assistant Professor at the UNM School of Law, and is on the Board of Directors of the New Mexico State’s Bar’s Appellate Practice Section. 


Away from the law, Alicia is rejuvenated by great paintings and novels, fixing up her old house, watching soccer and basketball, and spending time with the people and dog she loves.  She lives in Santa Fe.

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