This week, Utah Solicitor General Melissa Holyoak was honored to receive the prestigious National Association of Attorney Generals (NAAG) Senior Staff Award in Washington DC. The award is given annually to individuals who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, expertise and achievement to other state AGs and to NAAG.
Holyoak oversees the State’s constitutional and special litigation matters in a variety of areas including public lands, the environment, and energy. For example, in Utah v. EPA, she is leading the State’s efforts in the Tenth Circuit challenging the EPA’s disapproval of Utah’s state implementation plan related to the ozone transport rule. Her work also includes multistate, bipartisan efforts as well. She led the Office’s work in Utah v. Google, an antitrust lawsuit filed by 39 states challenging Google’s exclusionary conduct relating to the Google Play Store, an app store for Android. The states recently announced a settlement with Google and 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Relatedly, she led two amicus briefs filed by 35 states in the Ninth Circuit relating to a lawsuit against Apple alleging anticompetitive conduct pertaining to the iOS App Store. In the U.S. Supreme Court, she led a 15-state bipartisan amicus supporting North Carolina in Stein v. PETA, No. 22-1150, a case involving the ability of states to protect their citizens’ private property from unwarranted intrusion by deceptive individuals.
SG Holyoak has had a distinguished legal career as a public interest attorney and litigator focusing on consumer protection. She served as president and general counsel of Hamilton Lincoln Law Institute and was one of the successful petitioners in the 2019 Supreme Court Case Frank v. Gaos.
SG Holyoak became Utah Solicitor General in 2020, and was recently appointed to serve on the Federal Trade Commission.