Darin Sender named Legal Leader of the Year

The founder and president of Sender Associates, Darin Sender, has been named the Legal Leader of the Year in the Phoenix Business Journal’s Landmark Leaders awards.

The Landmark Leader awards features some of the Valley’s most successful and inspiring real estate leaders. Darin’s Legal Leader award is a testament to her hard work, innovative thinking, and commitment to growing the community both through new developments and through her students.

Darin Sender is an AV-rated zoning attorney and president and founder of Sender Associates, a woman-owned law firm based in Tempe. She is an expert in planning, zoning, and land use law. For more than twenty years Sender has been involved in the development and entitlement fields, helping clients obtain zoning entitlements for mixed-use, residential, commercial, and industrial projects. Her architecture and legal education proves to be an invaluable asset when dealing with entitlement matters.

Her entitlement approval experience includes appearances in front of municipal and county appointed and elected boards, commissions, and councils including various City Councils, Boards of Supervisors, Planning Commissions, Boards of Adjustment, and appellate hearing bodies. In addition to those oral argument and presentation capabilities, she also has extensive experience in the often-necessary lobbying of elected and appointed officials on behalf of her clients, as well as the public participation process.

Sender has served as a seven-year Mayor-appointed member of the Tempe Board of Adjustment, hearing many use permit, variance and ordinance text interpretation matters. She then served a five-year appointed term on the Tempe Planning Commission, closely involved in the four-year process of rewriting the City of Tempe Zoning and Development Code as a lawyer-member of the Mayor’s citizen committee, then as an instrumental member of the Planning Commission drafting the final Zoning Code. She is currently a Council-appointed member of the Ahwatukee Village Planning Committee.

Sender designed and implemented a practical zoning and land use course in the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, ASU where she taught for over a decade. During the years, many of her students secured positions in the public sector and are planning directors, city managers, and senior planners at various municipalities throughout Arizona. She currently teaches zoning and land use law in the Master of Real Estate Development program at the W.P. Carey School of Business.

Sender is a member of the American Bar Association and the Arizona Bar Association. She is a longtime member of the American Institute of Architects and Arizona Institute of Architects, is a member of the Urban Land Institute, and is the past chairman of the Valley Partnership Political Action Committee. She is also a proud member of Tempe Leadership Class XV.