Denver Director of Regional Affairs Paul J. Ryan dies at age 49

DENVER - Paul J. Ryan, Denver’s Director of Regional Affairs, died Saturday at age 49.

Ryan, who is originally from Chicago, came to Denver in 1981 to attend Regis University, earning a bachelor’s degree in political science and a minor in communications.

Mayor Michael B. Hancock appointed Ryan his Director of Regional Affairs in 2011.

Ryan has represented and supported Mayor Hancock in a variety of projects and councils, including the Denver Regional Council of Governments, the Metro Mayors Caucus and the Colorado Municipal League.

“I love this town, being able to work on projects that make a long-term difference, interacting with lots of folks with disparate agendas and positions, finding your way to a compromise,” Paul said in a February Washington Park Profile article. “I hope that in my later days I’ll be able to look around town and the metro area and think I had at least some small role in it.”

Ryan is survived by his wife Pam, four siblings and numerous nieces and nephews.

Mayor Hancock, who was scheduled to travel to Nigeria early this week, has canceled the trip due to Ryan’s death.