Patricia Lee Refo

American Bar Association
Chair, House of Delegates, 2014-2016

Patricia (Trish) Lee Refo of Phoenix, a partner in the law firm Snell & Wilmer, today became chair of the American Bar Association House of Delegates at the organization’s Annual Meeting in Boston.


The House of Delegates is the ABA’s policymaking body, and the two-year post of chair is the second-highest office in the organization. There are 560 delegates in the House, including representatives of state and local bar associations, substantive legal sections and divisions of the ABA, and affiliated organizations and conferences of the Judicial Division, as well as former ABA officers, members of the Board of Governors, at-large delegates and state delegates. Action taken by the House of Delegates on specific issues becomes official policy of the ABA.

.Refo's practice is concentrated in complex commercial litigation and internal investigations, with extensive experience in financial institutions litigation, professional malpractice defense, class actions, trade secret litigation, and commercial and business torts. She chairs the firm's Professional Liability Litigation group.

Refo is a frequent speaker at international, national, state and local continuing legal education conferences, including annual meetings of the American College of Trial Lawyers, the American Bar Association, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the CPR Center for Dispute Resolution, the Sedona Conference, the Judicial Conferences of the Seventh and Ninth Circuits, the Western States Bar Conference and various state bar conventions.

In the ABA, Refo is the elected state delegate from Arizona. She also served in the House of Delegates from 1998-2001 and 2005-present. She was on the ABA Section of Litigation Executive Committee from 1994-2010, serving as chair in 2003-2004. She was also on the Standing Committee on Membership from 2008-2012 serving as chair from 2008-2011. She is a member of the ABA Nominating Committee (2008-present), served on the Commission on Civic Education and the Separation of Powers (2005-2007) and has been a Special Consultant and member on the American Jury Project (2005-present) serving as chair from 2004-2005.

Among her many awards and recognitions, Refo recently received the President’s Award at the annual State Bar of Arizona Convention. She was the 2009 winner of the ABA Jury System Impact Award. She has been named to Best Lawyers in America® since 2003, listed as a Southwest Super Lawyer® since 2007, was the Phoenix Legal Malpractice Law “Lawyer of the Year” in 2012, and named one of The 50 Most Influential Women Lawyers in America by The National Law Journal.

In her community, Refo is a council member for the Smithsonian American Art Museum, a director of Stratford Hall museum (2008-present) and worked as director at the Arizona Foundation for Women (1999-2005) and the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce (2005-2011).

Refo, who has practiced law for 31 years, received both her J.D. and B.A. from the University of Michigan. She has been admitted to practice in the Supreme Court of Arizona, the Supreme Court of Illinois, the U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, and the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth, Seventh, Ninth and Eleventh Circuits.