Steven Cologne was elected Managing Partner of the Firm in 2016. He devotes his practice to complex Tort and Commercial litigation in State and Federal Courts.

In 2020, Mr. Cologne achieved the distinction of being certified as a Fellow in the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) effective May 2020.  On May 4, 2020, he was admitted to practice law in the District of Columbia.

Mr. Cologne joined Higgs Fletcher & Mack in 1999 after previously enjoying 15 years as an associate, partner and shareholder with the law firm of McInnis, Fitzgerald, Rees & Sharkey, then San Diego’s premier litigation firm. Currently, he focuses on defending clients in employment litigation, breach of contract disputes, trademark litigation, and other commercial litigation matters.

In his practice, Mr. Cologne devotes substantial time advising clients in pre-litigation situations to resolve potential disputes and avoid the uncertainty and cost of litigation. His significant trial experience is of great benefit in positioning the client to achieve the result needed for continued future success of the business. Given the fact that litigation through trial is a painful experience for clients, this approach can save significant attorney’s fees and opportunity costs. Even successful litigation clients often express regrets about the failure to aggressively pursue resolution earlier in the dispute.

As an attorney for over 30 years, Mr. Cologne primarily represents businesses in complex litigation at the state and federal level. He currently serves as the primary litigation counsel for San Diego Unified School District on a variety of claims in State and Federal court. He has received the highest rating (AV) available from Martindale-Hubbell for ethics and legal ability, and has been selected by his peers and recognized by The Best Lawyers® in America each year from 2008-2020. He has been named one of Southern California Super Lawyers®, San Diego Edition since 2007. He has earned the rank of Advocate with the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), the premier association of trial attorneys, with nearly 80 jury trials to verdict. For his demonstrated leadership and vision, in 2017 The Daily Transcript named him as one of the “50 Influential Leaders” in San Diego.

An active participant in both the legal community and the greater San Diego community at large, Mr. Cologne is a member of a number of professional organizations including the State Bar of California Labor and Employment Law section.

He is a past Executive Editor of San Diego Lawyer™, the journal of the San Diego County Bar Association, and served as a Board Member of the San Diego County Bar Foundation, the charitable arm of the Bar. He is proud to be counsel for The Old Globe in San Diego, the top regional theatre in the country. In addition, he serves on the University of San Diego School of Law Board of Visitors for his alma mater.

In his free time, he enjoys wilderness backpacking, horseback riding, outdoor photography, and foreign travel.

Awards & Honors

  • Distinguished Alumni Award, University of San Diego School of Law (2020)
  • San Diego Business Journal, San Diego 500 List of Influential Business Leaders (2017-2020)
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers® in America (2008-2020)
  • San Diego Magazine "Top Lawyers," recognized by Martindale-Hubbell® as an AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated Lawyer (2020)
  • Southern California Super Lawyers (2007-2020)
  • Daily Transcript, 50 Influential Leaders in San Diego (2017)

Affiliations

  • State Bar of California
  • San Diego County Bar Association
  • Association of Southern California Defense Counsel
  • Supreme Court Historical Society
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (Earned the Rank of Advocate)
  • Fellow, The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb)
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