Fred Abramowitz

Fred Abramowitz is a graduate of Columbia University (B.A., 1973, M.A., 1975), and the University of New Mexico (J.D., 1982). He began his legal career working for the New Mexico State Engineer, where he was employed from 1983 to 1987.

In 1988, Mr. Abramowitz became general counsel for the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District, and in 1989 he left the public sector and went into solo practice. In 1991, he became the first recognized water law specialist in the state of New Mexico.

Abramowitz & Franks was formed in 2002. Mr. Abramowitz is the managing partner of the firm.


Mr. Abramowitz has litigation experience covering a broad range of areas, including water law, natural resources law, civil rights, and employment law, as well as experience in structuring complex litigation. He has represented numerous state and governmental agencies, including the New Mexico Office of the State Engineer, the Interstate Stream Commission, the State Land Office, the City of Albuquerque, the County of Bernalillo, and the Attorney General’s Office, as well as numerous acequias, domestic water users associations, and individuals throughout the west.

Fred Abramowitz has served as lead counsel and principal negotiator in matters involving interstate water compacts and water apportionments, the Endangered Species Act, and numerous other natural resource and water matters, including extensive experience in acquiring, evaluating, and transferring water rights in administrative and judicial forums.

Mr. Abramowitz is an experienced trial attorney. He has been an adjunct professor of water law at the University of New Mexico, School of Law. He is a former independent counsel for the City of Albuquerque, where he served as the city’s civilian police oversight officer. He is licensed in all state and federal courts in New Mexico and Colorado, in the Tenth Circuit, and in the United States Supreme Court. For a list of Mr. Abramowitz’ principal cases, visit our Publications and Principal Cases section.

Appointments & Academic Involvements

  • Adjunct Professor of Law, University of New Mexico School of Law, teaching water law (2003-2005).
  • Visiting Professor of Law, University of New Mexico School of Law (1992).
  • Instructor in Water Law, Albuquerque Bar Association.
  • Invited Speaker, First Annual Water Marketing Conference, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA, (1993).
  • Week’s End with Dan Vukevich, KNME-TV, as an expert panelist on Albuquerque water issues.


In 2004, Mr. Abramowitz and his wife Dr. Amy Susan Hayes moved to Fort Collins, Colorado. He is an avid fly-fisherman and ultra marathon runner, and has traveled extensively throughout the world.

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