40 & Under List - West


Dispute resolution
40 and Under West


Ad Astra

Founding partner of Ad Astra Katy Young is a standout advocate for her clients in business, commercial, and real estate disputes. Her expertise is expanding to also include a number of emerging markets, such as the cannabis industry. Young, along with six other women, has been elected to the International Cannabis Bar Association’s board of directors. She also serves as the firm’s managing partner. 


Everett Dorey 

Founding partner of Everett Dorey Samantha Dorey specializes in civil litigation, with an emphasis on environmental law, employment law, catastrophic injury, and mass tort actions. Her recent representations include serving as a member of the lead counsel team defending the City of Costa Mesa in a suit that garnered national attention. The matter resulted in the City of Costa Mesa being the only city to create a city ordinance that helps stop corruption, fraud and exploitation of people suffering from addiction by privately owned and unregulated sober living homes. The suit was brought after Orange County had been plagued by sober living home operators whose actions allegedly resulted in deaths and negatively affected residential neighborhoods throughout the county. 


Hunton Andrews Kurth 

Samuel Brown of the Hunton Andrews Kurth San Francisco offices maintains his spot on the 40 & Under List. He continues to be recognized for his environmental practice, specializing in handling government investigations and enforcement actions. Brown is experienced in matters related to wetlands, water quality and groundwater. He has previously represented Cargill in a Clean Water Act matter and is regularly sought by the City of San Francisco to assist in a range of compliance, permitting, enforcement and other contentious matters. 


Kasowitz Benson Torres 

Intellectual property litigator Marcus Barber has expertise working with Silicon Valley’s technology companies, device-makers, and partners based in Asia. Among his current matters, Barber is representing Fintiv in a patent infringement case against Apple. The matter involves a patent covering the management of virtual cards on mobile devices. Apple petitioned the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) for inter partes review, and in 2020 the PTAB issued a discretionary denial based on the pendency of the parallel litigation in district court, which is set to continue in the Western District of Texas. Marcus is also co-lead partner on the team representing Intellectual Ventures in a patent infringement suit against General Motors, Toyota and Honda. 


Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough 

A newly named 40 & Under List partner, Jahmy Graham of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, California office has cultivated a practice centered around class action, commercial, and business tort litigation across numerous industries, including manufacturing, healthcare, retail, technology, and transportation. Working alongside the ACLU, Graham currently serves as co-counsel to a class of plaintiffs in a pro bono action against the New Orleans Police Department, where claimants allege violent treatment stemming from a June 2020 protest, as well as the violation of their First Amendment rights. Widely covered across media outlets, the incident – during which protestors were shot with rubber bullets, struck with batons, and subjected to tear gas – was among the most high-profile occurrences of police violence against demonstrators.    


Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison 

At the firm’s San Francisco outfit, 40 & Under List partner Meredith Dearborn specializes in antitrust, copyright, and white-collar litigation. Dearborn has been instrumental in leading the firm’s representation of Apple in two recent matters, including the client’s antitrust dispute with “Fortnite” creator Epic Games – among the most high-profile civil trials in recent memory – regarding claims brought by Epic which sought to challenge Apple’s model of taking 30% commission for in-app purchases, among other business practices. Guiding her fellow litigators as co-lead counsel, Dearborn was indispensable in achieving victory at trial on Apple’s behalf. Nine of the 10 claims brought by Epic were ruled in favor of Apple – including the most significant, monopoly maintenance and restriction of trade – and Epic saw only one minor, state claim decided in its favor.    



In Proskauer’s Los Angeles office, Susan Gutierrez represents clients across industries in commercial and product liability matters. Named a 40 & Under partner as of this year, Gutierrez currently serves on the firm’s representation team of Gilead Sciences in bellwether liability litigation suits in federal and state courts brought by more than 17,000 plaintiffs around the country. Plaintiffs allege that the client’s HIV prevention and treatment drugs are of defective design and that effective measures were not taken by the client to warn of increased risks of kidney disease and bone injury.     


Sidley Austin 

Inducted as a 40 & Under List partner this year, Irene Yang of Sidley Austin’s San Francisco and Palo Alto offices has developed her practice around the spheres of IP and technology litigation. At present, she serves as lead counsel to Adobe Systems Incorporated in a complex matter filed against the client by Express Mobile in reaction to a declaratory judgement action filed earlier against Express Mobile by the client. Implicating Adobe and numerous other technology companies in an aggressive licensing campaign, Express Mobile seeks to target technologies that are integral to the client and other defendants in this and other ongoing matters.    


Simpson Thacher & Bartlett 

Palo Alto-based Stephen Blake handles high-stakes shareholder and other securities-related litigation. Most recently, he was lead counsel representing Chinese tech giant Alibaba in a putative securities class action in the Southern District of New York, which was dismissed with prejudice last September. The court adopted the team’s arguments and granted a pre-suit injunction, which will bar the plaintiff from filing another complaint against the client without first seeking leave from the court. Blake is also involved in a case representing a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), GO Acquisition, as well as its founders and board members, in a class action in the South District of New York. Plaintiffs allege that the client is an “investment company” under the ICA and therefore subject to the act’s restrictions. The case is among several others that are addressing untested issues related to SPACs and the ICA. Blake filed a motion to dismiss last October and most recently in March filed a notice of supplemental authority addressing the Securities and Exchange Commission’s proposed rules governing SPACs. 


Stris & Maher 

Dana Berkowitz is based at the Los Angeles headquarters of Stris & Maher, where she chairs the firm’s healthcare group. Her high-stakes practice, which includes a variety of complex commercial disputes, represents clients in multimillion-dollar suits across the country. Berkowitz was a recent member of the lead counsel team that defended Cliffside Malibu, Richard Taite, and Clean & Sober Media in a high-profile, high-stakes Lanham Act dispute in the Central District of California. The litigation involved back-to-back jury and bench trials, a Ninth Circuit appeal, and a final resolution on remand decisively in the clients’ favor. Berkowitz’s expertise lends itself to lead counsel roles as well: she recently represented Creative Care after taking over from prior defense counsel in a license revocation proceeding brought by the California Department of Health Care Services. After a four-week virtual bench trial in April 2020, the administrative law judge issued a 69-page proposed decision finding that none of the significant allegations against Creative Care was proven, nor were many of the others. After the recommended two years of probation, which DHCS adopted, Creative Care has since reopened. 


Weil Gotshal & Manges 

Hailing from Weil Gotshal & Manges’ Silicon Valley office, partner Bambo Obaro litigates complex commercial disputes with specialized expertise in matters including, but not limited to, product liability, consumer class actions, trade secrets, and employment. At present, Obaro serves as lead trial counsel to consumer goods distribution giant Core-Mark Holding Company in a widely spectated, first-of-its-kind multidistrict litigation against the client arising from its sale of e-cigarette devices manufactured by JUUL. Plaintiffs – totaling over 1,500 discrete personal injury claimants – bring forth allegations that JUUL and its distribution and retail partners colluded to disseminate fallacious and misleading marketing information, often targeted toward underage youth, which has led to numerous cases of addiction and fatal health complications. The matter remains ongoing.    


July 2022