About Eric Alan Isaacson
I’m a 1985 graduate of the Duke University School of Law, where I served on the editorial board of the Duke Law Journal and graduated with high honors. I’m also a 2022 graduate of the Harvard Divinity School, from which I earned a Master of Religion and Public Life.
After graduating from law school in 1985, I served as a judicial clerk for the Honorable J. Clifford Wallace on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, a court that handles appeals from the federal district courts in Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Oregon, Montana, and Washington.
Following my judicial clerkship, I worked for three years as a litigation associate with a large law firm in Los Angles, where I was on the trial team for a major trademark-infringement action.
In 1989, I moved to San Diego and joined the plaintiffs’ class-action bar as an associate with Milberg, Weiss, Bershad, Hynes & Lerach, LLP, which at the time was America’s largest plaintiffs’ side class-action law firm, and where I became a partner in January of 1994. Roughly a decade later, in May 2004, I and some other West Coast partners left Milberg Weiss to found a new firm that soon took the lead in prosecuting major securities-fraud class actions.
Most of my time with America’s largest plaintiffs’ side class-action law firms was devoted to federal civil appeals in complex class actions – including securities, antitrust and consumer cases. I also devoted substantial time to pro bono public service, working with the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation on several matters, and filing amicus curiae briefs for religious organizations and faith leaders in many others.
Public Service and Legal Scholarship
Much of my time over the years has been devoted to public service.
I am a founding member of the American Constitution Society San Diego Lawyer Chapter, and continue to serve as a member of the chapter’s board of directors. I also have served on the board of the San Diego Foundation for Change, and I am currently a member of the editorial board of Skinner House Books, which is an imprint of the Unitarian Universalist Association.
I have devoted thousands of hours over my career to pro bono legal work – working for free with or on behalf of nonprofit organizations seeking social justice.
Since 2005, for example, I have represented religious organizations as amici curiae or “friends of the court” supporting religious freedom and equal rights for all. That work inspired me to pursue a course of graduate studies at the Harvard Divinity School, which in May of 2022 awarded me the degree of Master of Religion and Public Life.
Over more than a decade, I represented the California Council of Churches, the Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry and many other religious organizations and faith leaders supporting same-sex couples’ right to marry – first in state court, in California’s Marriage Cases, and then in both state and federal challenges to California’s Proposition 8. I also represented the California Council of Churches, the Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry, and other California religious organizations before the U.S. Supreme Court in Hollingsworth v. Perry, 133 S.Ct. 2652 (2013), which saw the end of California’s ban on same-sex marriages, and in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. ___, 135 S.Ct. 2584 (2015), which finally sustained same-sex couples’ constitutional right to marry in all the United States.
My pro bono legal work has been recognized with awards, including the American Constitution Society San Diego Lawyer Chapter’s Roberto Alvarez Award (January 2014); the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation’s Hero Award (February 2013); the Democrats for Equality Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Community Service (November 17, 2012); and the Unitarian Universalist Association President’s Annual Award for Volunteer Service, awarded by the Rev. Dr. William G. Sinkford at the Unitarian Universalist Association’s 48th General Assembly in Salt Lake City, Utah (June 2009).
In addition to my legal practice, I have published scholarly articles in academic law reviews and bar journals. Some of my articles focus on issues related to class actions, and to securities-fraud cases in particular. Others deal with religious liberty, civil rights, and equal protection of the law.
Law-Review And Bar-Journal Articles
- Eric Alan Isaacson, A Real-World Perspective on Withdrawal of Objections to Class-Action Settlements and Attorneys’ Fee Awards: Reflections on the Proposed Revisions to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(e)(5), 10 Elon Law Review 35 (2018)
- Eric Alan Isaacson, The Roberts Court and Securities Class Actions: Reaffirming Basic Principles, 48 Akron Law Review 923 (2015)
- Eric Alan Isaacson, Free Exercise for Whom? – Could the Religious-Liberty Principle that Catholics Established in Perez v. Sharp Also Protect Same-Sex Couples’ Right to Marry?, 92 University of Detroit Mercy Law Review 29 (2015)
- Eric Alan Isaacson, Goodridge Lights A Nation’s Way to Civic Equality, Boston Bar Journal, Nov. 15, 2013
- Eric Alan Isaacson, Are Same-Sex Marriages Really a Threat to Religious Liberty?, 8 Stanford Journal of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties 123 (2012)
- Eric Alan Isaacson, Assaulting America’s Mainstream Values: Hans Zeiger’s Get Off My Honor: The Assault on the Boy Scouts of America, 5 Pierce Law Review 433 (2007) (review essay)
- Eric Alan Isaacson, Traditional Values, or a New Tradition of Prejudice? The Boy Scouts of America vs. the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations, 17 George Mason University Civil Rights Law Journal 1 (2006)
- Patrick J. Coughlin, Eric Alan Isaacson & Joseph D. Daley, What’s Brewing in Dura v. Broudo? The Plaintiffs’ Attorneys Review the Supreme Court’s Opinion and its Import for Securities-Fraud Litigation, 37 Loyola University Chicago Law Journal 1 (2005)
- William S. Lerach & Eric Alan Isaacson, Pleading Scienter Under Section 21D(b)(2) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934: Motive, Opportunity, Recklessness and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, 33 San Diego Law Review 893 (1996)
- Eric Alan Isaacson, The Flag Burning Issue: A Legal Analysis and Comment, 23 Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review 535 (1990)
- Patrick J. Coughlin, Eric Alan Isaacson & Joseph D. Daley, Duped Investors See ‘Dura’ as Diamond in the Rough, Los Angeles Daily Journal, July 5, 2005, p. 8
- Patrick J. Coughlin & Eric Alan Isaacson, Securities Class Actions in the United States, in William G. Horton & Gerhard Wegen, eds., Litigation Issues in the Distribution of Securities: An International Perspective (Kluwer International/International Bar Association, 1997)
- Alan Schulman, Eric Isaacson & Jennifer Wells, Pleading Standards Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: The Central District of California’s Chantal Decision, Class Actions & Derivative Suits, Summer 1996, at 14
- Patrick J. Coughlin & Eric Alan Isaacson, Commencing Litigation Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (“PSLRA”), in Jay B. Kasner & Bruce G. Vanyo, eds., Securities Litigation 1996 (Practicing Law Institute 1996)
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