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Cynthia McGuinn

Cynthia McGuinn

Contact Cynthia McGuinn

Cynthia’s skills in the courtroom are the envy of many attorneys and she has the trial record to prove it—a number of her jury trials have resulted in eight figure verdicts and in 2015 she earned the record for the largest personal injury verdict in the history of Sonoma County.

Her ability to read and connect with jurors is second to none and she has the knack of making even the most difficult cases clear to each juror on the panel. Cynthia is often called upon to consult with attorneys who have cases that are going to trial, and to try cases for other attorneys who have worked up a complex case that cannot be resolved.

Cynthia’s client base is diverse; she represents consumers from infants to the elderly. Past clients include industrial workers such as iron workers, operating engineers, boilermakers, fork and crane lift operators, auto and airline mechanics, electricians, plumbers, carpenters, masons, roofers, painters, press operators, tile setters, truck drivers and general laborers. She has also represented other professionals such as computer analysts, IT professionals, nurses, doctors, teachers, judges and models. A substantial part of her representation involves prosecuting actions for surviving family members in wrongful death cases and in prosecuting actions on behalf of persons sustaining injuries resulting in paraplegia or quadriplegia and brain injuries.

McGuinn was honored as the 2003 Trial Lawyer of the Year by the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association and has been recognized as a “Top Woman Litigator” in California every year since 2005. She was the first woman president of the San Francisco Chapter and is presently the president elect of the national organization known as the American Board of Trial Advocates, and is a Fellow of several other invitation-only organizations, including The International Society of Barristers, the American College of Trial Lawyers and the International Academy of Trial Lawyers. The International Academy is limited to 600 members worldwide. Cynthia is also a member of the Consumer Attorneys of California, American Association for Justice, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association and Bar Association of San Francisco.

While maintaining an active litigation practice, McGuinn writes, lectures and has taught at law schools (UC Berkeley and Harvard) on the subject of trial advocacy. When time permits she likes to bike, dive, and ski and ride her horses.

Cynthia has an A.V. Preeminent® rating for ethics and legal talent rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

EDUCATION

  • B.S. University of Akron, Ohio 1971
  • J.D. Golden Gate University 1981

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS & OFFICES

Offices held

  • The Foundation of the American Board of Trial Advocates - Trustee 2012 to present, Executive Board Secretary 2012, Treasurer 2013, President 2015
  • American Board of Trial Advocates, San Francisco Chapter - President
  • American Board of Trial Advocates, San Francisco Chapter - Executive Board, Secretary 2005, Treasurer 2006, VP 2007, President 2008
  • American Board of Trial Advocates; National Board Member 1999 – 2002; 2008-2010
  • Consumer Attorneys of California - Board of Governors 1996 - 1997; 1997 Nor Cal Chair Legislative Executive Committee - Employment Litigation
  • San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association - Board of Directors 1989 to 1999

Professional Associations by Invitation

  • American Board of Trial Advocates - Associate 1997 to present
  • Litigation Counsel of America – Fellow 2009
  • International Society of Barristers – Fellow 2007
  • American College of Trial Lawyers-Fellow 2006
  • International Academy of Trial Lawyers - Fellow 2004
  • American Board of Trial Advocates - Civil Justice Committee (National) 1998; Education Committee (National) 1999; Executive Board - Secretary of San Francisco Chapter 2005

Professional Associations

  • State Bar of California 1981 – present
  • Consumer Attorneys of California 1985 – present
  • San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association 1987 – present
  • American Trial Lawyers Association 1988 – present
  • California Employment Lawyers Association 1989 – present
  • National Employment Lawyers Association 1989 - present
  • Western Trial Lawyers Association 1995 – present
  • American Board of Trial Advocates 1997 – present
  • Trial Lawyers for Public Justice 1998 – present
  • Bar Association of San Francisco 1998 – present
  • International Academy of Trial Lawyers 2004 – present
  • American College of Trial Lawyers-Fellow 2006 – present
  • International Society of Barristers - Fellow 2007 – present
  • Marin Trial Lawyers Association 2007 – present
  • Litigation Counsel of America – Fellow 2009

AWARDS

  • Lifetime Achievement Award 2015, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, San Francisco, California
  • Masters in Trial, American Board of Trial Advocates, 2011
  • Masters in Trial, American Board of Trial Advocates, 2010
  • Top 75 Women Litigators, 2005 - 2013
  • Top 50 Women Lawyers, Super Lawyers 2008 - 2013
  • Selected for inclusion in California Super Lawyers 2005-2013
  • Trial Lawyer of the Year finalist, 2004, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, San Francisco, California
  • Trial Lawyer of the Year 2003, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, San Francisco, California

PRESENTATIONS & PUBLICATIONS

  • March 24, 2017, American Bar Association 2017 TIPS/ABOTA National Trial Academy, Reno, Nevada
  • November 10, 2016, American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial Series, Seattle, Washington.
  • October 27, 2016, San Francisco Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial Series, “Premises Liability Trial”, Cross Examination of Defendant Property Manager.
  • September 28, 2016, San Mateo County Trial Lawyers Association, “Effective Use of Discovery in Preparation for Trial”, San Mateo, California
  • September 20, 2016, ABOTA James Otis Lecture Series, Austin Texas
  • September 24, 2015, Alameda County Bar Association, “The Art of Jury Selection”, Oakland, California.
  • June 6, 2015, Los Angeles Chapter of American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial Series, “Trying the Traumatic Leg Amputation Case” Southwestern Law School, Los Angeles, California.
  • May 15, 2015 Buffalo Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial Series.
  • “Trial Demonstration Opening Statement through Closing Argument”, Direct Examination of the Plaintiff” Buffalo, New York.
  • October 14, 2014, American Board of Trial Advocates’, Presented in the National Masters in Trial Series at the Constitution Center in Philadelphia.
  • October 9, 2014, San Francisco Trial Lawyer Association, Feature Speaker of “Consumer Attorneys College of Trial Arts’ Annual Kaiser Arbitration Seminar” San Francisco.
  • July 31, 2014 Practicing Law Institute, California Trial Advocacy Program, “Opening Statements and Closing Arguments” – San Francisco, California.
  • June 2014 Faculty, ABOTA National Trial College, Harvard Law School.
  • May 19, 2014, James Otis Lecture Series, Seattle, Washington.
  • March 22, 2014 Consumer Attorneys of California, Annual Tahoe Seminar, Key Note Speaker.
  • August 7, 2013, Practicing Law Institute, California Trial Advocacy Program, "Opening Statements and Closing Arguments" San Francisco.
  • May 14, 2013, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, "Openings & Closings by the Masters" San Francisco.
  • November 30, 2012, Sacramento Valley Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial Series, "Expedited Jury Trial Program" Sacramento.
  • November 1, 2012, Seattle Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial Series, "Cross Examination of the Adverse Expert" Seattle, Washington.
  • June 23, 2012, TEX- American Board of Trial Advocates CLE Roundup, "Opening Statement" Santa Fe, New Mexico.
  • February 2012, Columbia Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial Series, "The Legal Malpractice Trial" Columbia, South Carolina.
  • December 9, 2011, Association of Defense Counsel, "How to Win" San Francisco.
  • September 16, 2011, Consumer Attorneys of California, "Learning from Women Who Pick Winning Juries in Employment Cases" Woodside, California.
  • November 9, 2010, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, “Advanced Jury Techniques.” San Francisco.
  • October 7, 2010 Houston Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Masters in Trial. Demonstration - Opening Statement to Jury Deliberation. (Direct Exam of Plaintiff).
  • September 15, 2010 Consumer Attorneys of California, Masters Seminar - Women’s Caucus “Making Your Point, Effective Advocacy” San Francisco.
  • June 11, 2010, Los Angeles Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, “Masters In Cross-Examination, Universal City
  • December 3, 2009, Consumer Attorneys of California, “100 Days Before Trial – Part III,” Webinar, San Francisco
  • November 20, 2009, American Board of Trial Advocates, “Masters In Cross Examination,” Sacramento, California.
  • November 19, 2009, Consumer Attorneys of California, “100 Days Before Trial – Part II,” Webinar, San Francisco
  • October 22, 2009, Consumer Attorneys of California, “100 Days Before Trial – Part I,” Webinar, San Francisco
  • October 21, 2009, San Francisco Trial Lawyers, “Art of Negotiation,” San Francisco
  • September 29, 2009, Consumer Attorneys of California and San Mateo County Trial Lawyers Association, “Masters Seminar: 12 Angry Jurors,” Burlingame
  • September 15, 2009, San Francisco Trial Lawyers, “Jury 2.0,” San Francisco April 16, 2009, Consumer Attorneys of California, “Jury Questionnaires” Webinar, San Francisco
  • March 10, 2009, American Board of Trial Advocates, “Ethics & Civility Program,” Golden Gate University, San Francisco
  • October 25, 2008, San Francisco Trial Lawyers, “Cross Examination with the Women of ABOTA”
  • September 25, 2008, Nevada Justice Association’s 32nd Annual Convention/Seminar, Napa California - “Selecting Juries in an Unhappy America”
  • May 30, 2008, The Mediation Society, 6th Annual Education Program, San Francisco, “Mediation 2008: How The Process Has Evolved”
  • April 8, 2008, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Jury Techniques: “How to Select, Engage and Enlist Your Jury,” Chair
  • Autumn 2007, Stanford Law School, “Advocacy Skills Workshop” Faculty.
  • October 12, 2007, ABOTA, Masters in Trial, San Bernardino, “Cross-Examination of Defense Expert,” Child High Chair Case
  • September 21, 2007, ABOTA Masters in Trial, Reno, Nevada, “Cross-Examination of Defendant’s Seat Designer”, Collapsing Seat, Auto Case
  • May 31, 2007, ABOTA Masters in Trial, San Francisco, “Plaintiff’s Closing Argument.” Wrongful Termination Case
  • May 22, 2007 Consumer Attorneys of California, Live Web Seminar “Engaging in the Resolution Discussion-Opening a Dialogue to Set Cases Up for Resolution”
  • April 10, 2007, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Seminar, “Practical Tips for Communicating with Your Jury”
  • February 17-18, 2007, 32nd Western Regional National Trial Competition, Judge.
  • November 17-19, 2006, Consumer Attorneys of California, 45th Annual Convention, “The Powerful Closing Argument”
  • November 14, 2006, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Seminar, Marketing the case to the Jury, Jury Persuasion in the 21st Century”
  • June 25, 2006, National Employment Lawyers Association, 2006 17th Annual Convention, San Francisco, California “Proving Emotional Distress Damages”
  • June 10, 2006, Regional Trial Lawyers Conference, Bacara Resort, Santa Barbara, California – “Trial Tips from the Masters”
  • April 9, 2006, Golden Gate University School of Law’s Appellate Advocacy Program (Justice)
  • November 4, 2005, ABOTA Masters in Trial Program, Seattle Washington “Trial Demonstration Auto/Motorcycle Accident”
  • May 19, 2005 ABOTA Masters in Trial Program, San Francisco, California “The Ultimate Trial Notebook-Opening Statement”
  • April 2005 Northern District of California Judicial Conference “Adaptation or Extinction: The Evolution of Trial Lawyers"
  • January 2005, ABOTA Masters in Trial Program, Laguna Beach, California “Direct Examination of Plaintiff’s Expert-Brain Injury
  • October 2004, Hastings Law School, Center for Negotiation & Dispute Resolution, Judge, In School Negotiation Competition
  • June 26, 2004 NELA's 2004 Annual Convention, San Antonio Texas, Beyond Scrapes and Bruises-Proving What Can’t Be Seen-Emotional Distress Damages
  • May 9, 2003, American Board of Trial Advocates, Los Angeles, Masters in Trial Program - Negligence/ Premises-Criminal Act Case
  • January 2003, American Board of Trial Advocates, San Francisco, Masters in Trial Program-Negligence/ Product Liability
  • April 2003, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Jury Selection and Beyond: Dealing With Juror Bias in the 21st Century
  • June 2001, Western Trial Lawyers Association, Maui, Hawaii, Demonstrating Liability & Damages Using Computers, Day in the Life Videos and Settlement Brochures
  • April 2001, University of San Francisco, School of Law, Mediation A to Z from the Plaintiff’s Perspective
  • July 2000, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Discovery in Construction Litigation
  • June 2000, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Demonstrative Evidence in Brain Injury Cases
  • October 1999, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Summary Judgments in Construction Cases
  • December, 1998, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Sexual Torts Seminar
  • June, 1998, Association of Southern California Defense Counsel/Association of Defense Counsel, Lake Tahoe Seminar, Demonstration - Mock Trial. Plaintiff's Opening Statement, Wrongful Death - Cross Over Median Barrier Case
  • March, 1998, Consumer Attorneys of California, Annual Tahoe Seminar: Gathering and Using Evidence in Third Party Actions Arising Out of Construction Site Injuries
  • February 1998, Consumer Attorneys of California, Winter Seminar, Beaver Creek, Colorado, Trying the Wrongful Death Action
  • November 1997, American Board of Trial Advocates Seminar, Masters in Trial Program, Direct Examination of Plaintiff' Expert - Accident Reconstructionist
  • September 1997, California Association of Licensed Investigators, Developing an Holistic Investigative Service-How to become Indispensable to the Trial Lawyer
  • May 1997 San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association: Evidence Seminar: The Pros and Cons Of Interactive Evidence
  • September 1996 San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Evidence Seminar: General Damages in the Wrongful Death Case, Quantifying the Intangibles of Care, Comfort And Society
  • April 1996 31st Annual CAOC Tahoe Seminar: Quick Hits, Newest Evidence & Concepts: Voir Dire When Your Jury is Defense Minded
  • June 1995, Western Trial Lawyers Association, Voir Dire: The Auto Case
  • June 1995, American Board of Trial Advocates Seminar: The Ultimate Trial Book, Cross Examination
  • March 1995, 30th Annual CAOC Tahoe Seminar: Creative Approaches to Establishing Difficult Damage Issues Loss of Consortium
San Francisco Personal Injury Attorneys Reach Our Nationally Recognized Law Firm at (415) 940-7176

If you were injured in a truck accident, an auto accident, a construction site accident, or by a dangerous consumer product, you need someone on your side who you can trust. You can rely on our team at Rouda Feder Tietjen & McGuinn. Founded in 1980, our personal injury law firm has built a solid reputation as strong advocates helping the injured all across the Bay Area.

Over the course of our practice, our team has resolved thousands of personal injury claims in California, recovering over $500 million for our clients in the process. We are known in San Francisco for our commitment to professional excellence and our skill in standing up for clients who have been hurt due to others’ careless actions or inaction. Because of our hard work in this field, our accident attorneys have often been recognized within the legal community. Our injury attorneys’ achievements include the AV Preeminent® Rating for ethics and legal talent, 2014 Best Lawyers in America recognition, being named one of the 2017 “Best Law Firms” in the U.S. News – Best Lawyers®, and selection for Super Lawyers® from 2005 to present.

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