L. Rachel Lerman is a partner in Barnes & Thornburg LLP’s Los Angeles office, a member of the firm’s Litigation Department and co-chair of the Appellate Practice Group. Formerly a partner at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, she focuses on appellate practice and trial strategy in complex civil cases. She has handled writs and appeals in commercial, bankruptcy, patent, trade mark, trade secret, labor, insurance defense, white collar, and family law cases in state and federal courts nationwide. She works regularly with trial counsel on law and motion and trial strategy.
Ms. Lerman earned her B.A., cum laude, from Yale College and her M.A. and M.F.A. from Syracuse University. She received her J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law, where she was an editor of the Berkeley Women’s Law Journal and a Schurman Scholar for International & Comparative Law at the Universitæt Heidelberg in Heidelberg, Germany. After graduating law school, she clerked for the late Honorable T.G. Nelson for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Ms. Lerman serves as a member of the executive board for the Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF), and is a member of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers and the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Appellate Courts Committee. She frequently volunteers as a moot court judge and coaches high school students in mock trial competitions. She was recently appointed as a Director on the National Board of Trial Advocacy, an entity tasked with creating an ABA-approved certification process for legal specialists. Ms. Lerman is also the vice president of the vice president of the Louis D. Brandeis Center, which advances the civil and human rights of the Jewish people and promotes justice for all.
Ms. Lerman has received numerous awards and honors, including selection to the California Super Lawyers magazine’s “Super Lawyers” list every year from 2003-2016. She received the ACLU’s First Amendment Award in 2012. At her former firm, she received the Pro Bono Partner of the Year in 2011 and the Partner Recognition Award for mentoring and leadership in 2006. Ms. Lerman is also listed in The Best Lawyers in America.
She is admitted to practice in the state of California and before the U.S. Supreme Court, all federal Courts of Appeals, and the California District Courts.