Tom Ward brings more than 22 years of courtroom litigation experience to his practice, which focuses on criminal defense, white-collar defense, and civil litigation in state and federal courts.

Tom began his legal career in 1997 when he graduated from the University of Colorado School of Law, winning the school’s prestigious Rothgerber Moot Court Competition along the way. After an internship with the ACLU of Colorado, he served as a Deputy State Public Defender for the Colorado Public Defender’s Office in both their Denver and Pueblo offices.

During this time, Tom represented thousands of accused individuals and developed a reputation as a tenacious and innovative courtroom litigator. Tom won not guilty verdicts in jury trials for defendants charged with offenses ranging from misdemeanors in county court to serious felony matters including first-degree murder and sexual assault.

In 2001, Tom founded The Ward Law Firm, P.C.  Over the next 15 years, the firm developed a reputation statewide for providing highly-skilled, aggressive, results-oriented representation in both criminal and civil cases, and was twice named to U.S. News and World Report’s Best Law Firms in the field of White Collar Criminal Defense. During his time with The Ward Law Firm, Tom made federal criminal defense a focal point of his practice. Having represented countless federal defendants as a member of the Criminal Justice Act panel since 2003, Tom has become known as one of Denver’s top federal criminal defense lawyers.

Throughout his career, Tom has successfully represented individuals and corporate entities in a wide variety of cases including white-collar prosecutions in United States District Court, drug trafficking and serious violent felonies in state courts, and regulatory proceedings conducted by the Attorney General and other agencies. Tom has litigated numerous high-profile cases including a Jefferson County first degree murder trial that was featured on CBS 48 Hours.

Tom stays active in the legal community as member of the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and serves on the Board of Directors of the Colorado Lawyers Committee.

2022 Best Lawyers Thomas Ward 2022 best law firms badge 2021 Best Lawyers Thomas Ward


  • Partner, McDermott Stuart & Ward LLP (2016 – present)
  • Partner, The Ward Law Firm P.C. (2001 – 2016)
  • Public Defender, Office of the Colorado State Public Defender, Pueblo Office (1998 – 2001)
  • Public Defender, Office of the Colorado State Public Defender, Denver Office (1997 – 1998)
  • Legal Intern, ACLU of Colorado (Spring – Summer 1997)


  • University of Colorado School of Law, JD, (1997)
  • B.A., Finance, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (1992)


  • Supreme Court of the United States (2007)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit (2006)
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado (2003)
  • State of Colorado (1997)


  • Listed Under Criminal Defense: White-Collar, The Best Lawyers in America© (2015 – 2022)
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rated® (2013 – present)
  • 5280 Magazine, Denver’s Top Lawyers (2020)
  • Colorado Super Lawyers, Super Lawyers Magazine (2014 – present)
  • 10/10, AVVO
  • Colorado Rising Stars, Super Lawyers (2009, 2010)
  • Community Contribution Award, Colorado Lawyers Committee (2004)
  • Winner, Rothgerber Moot Court Competition, University of Colorado School of Law (1997)


  • Member, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (2014 – present)
  • Member, Colorado Bar Association (2002 – present)
  • Member, Criminal Justice Act Panel, U.S.D.C for the District of Colorado (2002 – present)
  • Member, Colorado Criminal Defense Bar (2001 – present)


  • Interview, Featured Alumni: Dru Nielsen (’97) and Tom Ward (’97), Colorado Law, University of Colorado Boulder (2019)
  • Interview, Criminal Risk Assessments in Colorado, Super Lawyers (2018)
  • Interview, A Blurry Picture, Law Week Colorado (2017)
  • Lecturer, Felony Murder, Hunter S. Thompson and the Last Gonzo Campaign, West LegalEdcenter (2011)
  • Lecturer, Medical Marijuana and the Federal Non-Enforcement Policy, West LegalEdcenter (2011)


  • Volunteer, Homeless Court, Project Homeless Connect Convention
  • Board of Directors, Colorado Lawyers Committee