Phillip G. Sapien is licensed to practice in New Mexico and is a founding partner of Sapien Law, located in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
University of Arizona. Juris Doctor: 1991
University of New Mexico (B.A., cum laude, 1988)
Admitted to Practice:
New Mexico State Courts
U.S. District Court of New Mexico
U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit
State Bar of New Mexico
Committee on Professionalism (Former Member)
(appointed by the Chief Justice of the New Mexico Supreme Court)
Committee on Diversity in the Legal Profession
Albuquerque Bar Association
New Mexico Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (Board Member 2004)
New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association (President 2003-2005)
New Mexico Trial Lawyers Association (NMTLA)
Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA)
Phillip is a 1983 graduate of Bernalillo High School in Bernalillo, New Mexico. In 1988 he graduated Cum Laude from the University of New Mexico (UNM) and is a 1991 graduate of the University of Arizona (U of A) College of Law in Tucson, Arizona. At the U of A, Phillip served as President of the Minority Law Students Association (1989-1990) and later as the Student Bar Association (SBA) President (1990-1991).
Phillip began his legal career at the New Mexico Public Defender’s office in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1992 where he represented several hundred clients charged with crimes ranging from petty misdemeanors to first-degree felony offenses. In 1996, he left the Public Defender’s office and entered private practice in the areas of general practice, criminal defense, personal injury and wrongful death. During his legal career, Phillip has participated in countless bench trials and other court hearings.
Phillip has been a Criminal Justice Act (CJA) panel attorney since 1999 and has received dozens of court appointed cases while serving on the CJA panel. Phillip has been lead counsel or co-counsel in approximately 75 jury trials in various New Mexico State Courts and the United States District Court since his admission to the New Mexico and Federal Bar associations. Several of his CJA appointments have involved complex, multi-defendant cases of up to 20 defendants. He has also argued cases before the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, Colorado.
Phillip is past president of the New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association (NMHBA), having held the position from 2003-2005. In 2006, he completed serving 10 years on the NMHBA board of directors. During his tenure on the NMHBA board of directors Phillip also served as Treasurer and Vice-President before becoming President of the NMHBA. He has also previously served on the Board of Directors for the New Mexico Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (NMCDLA). In 2005, Phillip and his brother, Joseph, formed the law firm of Sapien Law, LLC. Sapien Law, LLC handles various types of cases in the areas of civil and criminal litigation and estate planning for their clients. Phillip has also served on various New Mexico State Bar Committees and Subcommittees, including the Bar’s Committee on Diversity in the Legal Profession. He has also been a member of the New Mexico Supreme Court’s Commission on Professionalism. Phillip has also been a Continuing Legal Education (CLE) presenter for the New Mexico State Bar Association in the areas of Starting and Maintaining a Law Office, Handling your first Criminal case and Professionalism.
He has previously served on various other Community Service Organizations’ boards of directors related to housing services and Little League Baseball. He currently serves on the board of directors for the 21st Century Public Academy Charter School in Albuquerque. Phillip has also previously acted in or produced community theatre productions.
Phillip has coached youth basketball and baseball and umpired Little League Baseball for over 35 years. He is the former Chief Umpire at Coronado LL. In 2007 he umpired at the Southwestern Region LL Junior Baseball Regional Tournament in Grand Junction, Colorado. In 2012 he again umpired at the Southwestern Region LL Junior Baseball Regional Tournament this time in Albuquerque, New Mexico. That year he also umpired at the Little League Junior World Series in Taylor, Michigan. In 2016 Phillip umpired at the Little League Intermediate (50-70) World Series in Livermore, California. In 2018 Phillip will umpire at the Southwestern Region Little League Baseball Tournament in Waco, Texas.
Phillip is married and has three children. He is also an avid outdoorsman and enjoys hunting and fishing. His other hobbies include spending time with family and friends, golfing and water sports. He is also fluent in written and spoken Spanish.