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John E. Dorman

Of Counsel

Spencer Fane attorney John Dorman

T 405.753.5918
F 405.844.9958

John Dorman leans on more than three decades of extensive litigation experience as a municipal attorney to provide clients with creative solutions to resolve complex matters in a favorable manner.

Prior to joining Spencer Fane, John spent time as City Attorney for the city of Stillwater, Oklahoma, after previous stints as Assistant City Attorney for the cities of Edmond and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, and Litigation Division Manager for the city of Tulsa. In Stillwater, he served as the chief legal officer for a community home to Oklahoma State University and managed a municipal department that rendered all legal services, including litigation, for the city council and its subordinate boards, commissions, and quasi-judicial tribunals; city administration; and city-operated public utility, airport, and economic development trusts. This also included being directly responsible for handling complex transactional, real estate, and regulatory matters.

Because of this, John brings nuanced experience in real estate, labor and employment, employee benefits, financial services, and environmental litigation.

John’s prior municipal experience included heading a division for the city of Tulsa tasked with overseeing all federal and state litigation and associated appeals, workers’ compensation claims, processing and disposition of state tort claims, and civil service commission prosecution. He personally maintained a large docket involving defense of federal constitutional/civil rights (42 U.S. §1983) and employment discrimination (Title VII) claims.

In Broken Arrow, John served as primary legal advisor to the planning and code enforcement departments, defending zoning appeals and prosecuting condemnation actions in state courts. He also has valuable experience presiding over state agency administrative appeals authorized under the Oklahoma Private Security Guard and Private Investigator Act.

John has also served as an adjunct professor in political science at Tulsa Community College and Oklahoma City Community College.

Presentations and Publications

  • “Qualified Immunity after Pearson v. Callahan: New Hope for Expeditious Dispositions?” Municipal Lawyer, November/December 2009
  • “Defending Positional Asphyxia Claims,” Municipal Lawyer, July/August 2008


  • Oklahoma Bar Association
  • State Bar of Texas
  • Payne County Bar Association
  • Oklahoma Association of Municipal Attorneys
    • Board of Directors, 2004-present
  • International Municipal Lawyers Association
    • State Chair, 2008-present
    • University Cities Committee Chair, 2019-present
    • Fellows Committee, 2007-present


  • International Municipal Lawyers Association, Local Government Fellow

Contact John Dorman at 405.753.5918 or jdorman@spencerfane.com.