Steven J. Dawson

Experienced Litigation Attorney

Steven J. Dawson is a skilled litigation attorney with lead trial experience both in private practice and as an in-house corporate attorney. Mr. Dawson began his legal career associated with Burke, Williams & Sorensen, LLP, where he became a partner and handled a variety of litigation matters involving employment, real property, business, and educational law, including winning $500,000 for Loyola Marymount University. He was later Of Counsel to Aleshire & Wynder, LLP, where he obtained a $7 million award for a public entity client in a published decision. He then joined the Automobile Club of Southern California (AAA), a multi-billion diversified financial services enterprise with offices across the United States (Hawaii to Maine).

Corporate and Employment Law

Mr. Dawson served as managing counsel for AAA’s corporate litigation and helped develop an in-house corporate litigation department, supervising staff attorneys, paralegals and outside counsel while personally defending more than 20 lawsuits brought by former and current employees alleging claims of harassment, retaliation, discrimination and wrongful termination. Mr. Dawson has significant experience with arbitration, administrative hearings, federal and state court, and appellate briefing and argument. A substantial portion of his practice involves employment law, including litigation and preventative counseling, wage and hour matters, leaves and accommodation issues, the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), Title VII, ADA, ADEA, FMLA, CFRA and Labor Code whistleblower claims.

Mr. Dawson is a native Californian and a 1986 graduate of the University of California (Hastings College of the Law) in San Francisco, California. He earned his undergraduate degree in International Relations at Stanford University in 1982, where he studied abroad in Tours, France and was a member of the track team. While in law school, he was a congressional intern in the U.S. House of Representatives and clerked for the Honorable Otto M. Kaus, Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court.

  • California State Bar, 1987
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California, 1989
  • U.S. Court of Appeals Ninth Circuit, 1989
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California, 1989
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California, 2014
  • University of California San Francisco (Hastings College of the Law), J.D., 1986
    • Extern Clerk for the California Supreme Court, Associate Justice Otto M. Kaus
  • Stanford University, B.A., International Relations,1982
    • Varsity Track Team (Hurdles) & Recipient, Brooks Johnson Coach’s Award
    • Congressional Intern, United States House of Representatives, Washington D.C.
  • South Bay Bar Association (SBBA), Member
  • Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles (CAALA), member
  • Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC), Southern California Chapter, former member

Areas of Legal Practice

  • Labor & Employment Law Advice & Litigation
  • Business, Commercial & Civil Litigation
  • Arbitration, Mediation, Trials & Appeals
  • Municipal Law, Government Relations & Public Agency Defense
  • Real Property Law, Mechanic’s Liens, Inverse Condemnation & Eminent Domain

Honors and Awards

  • Graduate, Building Trial Skills, National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA)
  • Certified, Los Angeles County Bar Association Barristers’ Trial Attorney Project (TAP)

South Bay Community Involvement

  • Judge Pro Tempore, Torrance & San Pedro Courthouses, Los Angeles County Superior Court
  • Head Coach, Palos Verdes Basketball Association (PVBA), youth sports