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Ed Chapin is a Partner at Sanford Heisler Sharp and Chair of the firm’s Trial Practice Group. Since joining Sanford Heisler Sharp, Ed has continued to be recognized in the legal community as a premier trial attorney.

At Sanford Heisler Sharp, Ed’s practice has involved representing individuals and classes in employment and consumer protection matters, as well as individuals in commercial and personal injury cases.

Ed’s representations have included:

  • Representing Beth Burns, the winningest women’s basketball coach in the history of San Diego State University, in her claim for retaliatory discharge against the university, resulting in a jury verdict of $4 million plus fees and costs
  • Serving as lead counsel in a 99-day bench trial on behalf of 22 female sex trafficking victims resulting in a judgment of $21,000,000 against Girls Do Porn, Domi Publications, Oh Well Media, and others that was covered by The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and Rolling Stone
  • Negotiating a confidential settlement of a claim of an executive assistant to the CEO of a pharmaceutical start-up for damages arising from sexual harassment
  • Negotiating a confidential settlement of the claim of an employee of a religious university fired on account of sexual orientation
  • Negotiating a settlement of a multi-million claim on behalf of over 50 women who were victims of sex trafficking and unauthorized use of their names and likenesses against the parent company of a major pornography website
  • Negotiating a settlement for a class of hundreds of female employees of Qualcomm, a major technology company, denied equal pay and promotions
  • Negotiating a confidential settlement for Employees of Ma Labs, a Silicon Valley computer assembly company, denied overtime, meal and rest break pay

Ed received his law degree from the University of Missouri School of Law and his undergraduate degree from Missouri State University. Between college and law school, Ed served as an Infantry officer for four years in the U.S. Army, rising to the rank of Captain, including a tour of duty during the Vietnam War where he was decorated for valor twice.

A member of the California bar, Ed has served as a panelist at many professional seminars on topics pertinent to his areas of practice and in leadership roles in multiple local, state, and national organizations.

Ed has been listed in Best Lawyers in America since 1989 and is currently listed in the areas of Litigation-Labor and Employment, Commercial Litigation, Consumer Protection and Personal Injury, areas in which he currently focuses his practice. He has been listed as a San Diego Super Lawyer since 1989 and a Top 50 Lawyer for several years. In 2020, Ed was named a Trailblazer Plaintiff’s Lawyer by the National Law Journal. In 2021, Ed was recognized for the second time as the Outstanding Trial Lawyer by the Consumer Attorneys of San Diego (first awarded in 2017), as a California Litigation Star by Benchmark Litigation Labor and Employment and was selected by the San Diego Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates as its nominee for Cal ABOTA Trial Lawyer of the year.

Additional significant professional awards Ed has received over his career include: the Daniel T. Broderick Award for “epitomizing the highest principles of civility, integrity and professionalism” presented by ABOTA, the Association of Business Trial Lawyers, Consumer Attorneys of San Diego, San Diego Defense Lawyers, and the San Diego County Bar Association; the Lifetime Achievement Award presented by the San Diego Defense Lawyers; and the Outstanding Alumnus Award from Missouri State University.

Before joining Sanford Heisler Sharp, Ed was a named equity partner in three San Diego firms where he gained substantial experience in civil trials and served as a leader in multiple professional organizations.

When Ed is not lawyering, he enjoys reading, music, and his family of two adult sons and his teenage granddaughter, spending time at the Missouri farm where he was born and raised, and communicating with some members of the unit he led in combat in Vietnam.


    • J.D., University of Missouri School of Law, Columbia
    • B.S., Southwest Missouri State University

    Bar Admissions

    • California

    Court Admissions

    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
    • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
    • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California
    • U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
    • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California
    • U.S. Court of International Trade

    Professional Affiliations

    • American Bar Association (ABA)
    • California Bar Association
    • San Diego County Bar Association (SDCBA)
    • American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA)
    • Association of Business Trial Lawyers (ABTL)
    • American Association for Justice (AAJ)
    • Consumer Attorneys of California (CAOC)
    • Consumer Attorneys of San Diego (CASD)
    • Enright Inn of Court (EIOC)

    Public Service

    • Awarded Three Bronze Stars, Combat Infantry Badge, Air Medal and Army Commendation Medal during Vietnam Service
    • Line Officer in United States Army Infantry Unit, Germany 1964-1968
    • Ground Combat Service, U.S. First Infantry Division, South Vietnam 1967-1968

    Consumer Attorneys of San Diego Named Ed Chapin 2018 Lawyer of the Year

    Consumer Attorneys of San Diego Named Ed Chapin A 2017 Trial Star

    I am forever grateful for the attention and care that was given to my case.

    It was such an honor and privilege to have Ed represent me. During one of the most challenging experiences of my career, Ed and his team were so amazing. Their support and care gave me the comfort and security I needed to ensure that the situation would be resolved in an amicable way. I am forever grateful for the attention and care that was given to my case. – Former Client

    In good hands.

    "There are not enough words to express my gratitude. Thanks to Ed Chapin I have my life back. The situation I was dealing with made me feel trapped and that I had little control over my life. Everything at work is so much better now. I have peace. The years of pain and difficulty I had lived with are finally over. Now I can just do my job. It is amazing to me how much better my life is. Ed truly cared and listened to every step of the way and I knew I was in good hands. This was one of the scariest times in my life and now I can say my future feels bright and I have a feeling of peace and security. I am so grateful." 
    – J.W., Former Client

    Beyond words.

    "Dear Ed, I want to start off with a sincere apology for not thanking you and your hardworking team for everything you have done for myself, and all of the other wonderful ladies. My gratitude to you all is beyond words and although there is still pain, I am so thankful that I had you as a voice. Hearing about our collective victory against these horrible people really evokes extreme emotions. I have been processing this entire experience and I should have responded to your email much quicker. You have changed my life. You have changed all of our lives. You gave us all a chance to fight against something that was wrong and I appreciate you more than anything. So thank you again, I will never forget what you’ve done for me and I am grateful for having people like you out in this world. I truly love you all." 
    – Former Client

    Intricate knowledge.

    "David Sanford called me on Super Bowl Sunday (imagine that!) to let me know that Sanford Heisler Sharp would represent me. From start to finish, my legal team, Russell Kornblith, Ed Chapin, Adán Martinez and Natalie Chew, demonstrated its intricate knowledge and interpretation of employment law, specifically the risks and psychology of my employer’s strategy. As the case progressed quickly and constructively, I felt understood and respected throughout each step of the journey. The outcome was beyond what I could have imagined! I thank Sanford Heisler Sharp in my heart every time I read about them in the press. Just be thankful that they are on YOUR side and not the opposing counsel!" 
    – Former Banking Executive

    Above and beyond.

    "I highly recommend Ed Chapin with Sanford Heisler Sharp. Ed Chapin was there for me at my most vulnerable time in life. He and his team handled my case with extreme care and sensitivity. Instead of feeling like a mere client who represents financial gain to a law firm, I truly felt that I was treated with the same care and respect as would be given to a close family member or friend. Knowing Ed’s outstanding trial history and many decades of experience helped to give me a peace of mind through a stressful process. Ed truly went above and beyond to get me the justice I deserved. He has the utmost standards of professionalism, fairness, and dedication in his dealings with clients. If it wasn’t for Ed, I know that I wouldn’t have my confidence or voice back. He truly believed in me and fought tirelessly to get me the closure I needed. Ed Chapin is without question one of the best attorneys in the country and equally as noble of a man." 
    – Former Client

    GirlsDoPorn.com Lawsuit – $13 Million Verdict

    The women allege they were exploited by the defendants after answering modeling advertisements on Craigslist. When Plaintiffs submitted their personal information to sham modeling websites (such as www.beginmodeling.com), they became targets of Defendants’ fraudulent recruiting scheme for www.girlsdoporn.com.

    JUUL Labs, Inc. Whistleblower Retaliation/Wrongful Termination Case

    Sanford Heisler Sharp represents Siddharth Breja in his whistleblower retaliation and wrongful termination claims against JUUL Labs, Inc.

    Xilinx, Inc. Lawsuit

    Sanford Heisler Sharp and Fitzgerald Knaier filed a $365 million lawsuit against Xilinx, Inc. (Nasdaq: XLNX) on behalf of its former Senior Vice President of Strategic Marketing and Communications, Sabrina Joseph. Based […]

    Kraft Heinz Lawsuit

    Attorneys at Sanford Heisler Sharp filed a $30 million civil action in the Eastern District of California against Kraft Heinz Foods Company on behalf of former employees Alex Horn, Lance Aytman, and Keith Hooker. The action alleges Horn, Aytman, and Hooker were subjected […]

    Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. PAGA Lawsuit

    The plaintiff is former Ogletree equity partner Tracy Warren, who filed the representative action on behalf of herself and other similarly situated current or former female attorneys employed in California at the storied defense-side labor and employment firm. Ms. Warren filed the action under the California Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (PAGA).

    Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. Gender Discrimination Lawsuit

    The complaint asserts that Ogletree uses a number of tactics to shortchange female shareholders in pay and promotions. The firm manipulates allocation of origination credits by unfairly attributing such credits to male shareholders, even when women at the firm are the ones who bring in the client.

    Morrison & Foerster Gender, Pregnancy, and Maternity Discrimination Class and Collective Action

    The Complaint, which is filed on behalf of three female associates currently employed at MoFo, alleges the international law firm practices systemic gender discrimination against female lawyers, particularly those who are pregnant or have children.

    Madison Avenue Securities LLC FINRA Arbitration – $2.1 Million Award

    In the fight to protect investors from stockbroker misconduct, Sanford Heisler Sharp has obtained a $2.1 million FINRA arbitration award on behalf of a San Diego client whose investment nest egg was decimated by an imprudent, high-risk investment strategy that her stockbroker David Barber had recommended.

    Home Depot ERISA Class Action

    According to the complaint, Home Depot has selected multiple poorly-performing funds for its 401(k) plan, allowed investment advisers to charge its employees unreasonable fees, and turned a blind eye to a kickback scheme between an investment adviser and the plan’s recordkeeper.

    General Electric ERISA Class Action

    The Complaint asserts that GE and the Plan violated the Federal Employee Retirement Security Act (ERISA) by breaching their fiduciary duties and engaging in prohibited transactions and unlawful self-dealing detrimental to the three named plaintiffs individually and as representatives of a class.

    Madison Avenue Securities FINRA Claim

    The claim alleges Madison Avenue Securities alleging the firm turned a blind eye in allowing one of its stockbrokers who had a disciplinary history of misappropriating clients’ funds to loot hundreds of thousands of dollars from client’s account.

    Beth Burns Wrongful Termination Suit – $3.35+ Million Verdict

    The popular women’s basketball head coach was terminated by San Diego State University with four years left on her new 5-year contract after the women’s Aztecs basketball team completed a record-breaking 27-win season. The institution initially claimed its decision to remove Burns was based on her actions during a 2013 home game between her Aztecs and Colorado State University, during which she had incidental physical contact with a male assistant coach on the Aztecs’ bench during the heat of the close game.

    Ed Chapin Photo

    Ed Chapin

    San Diego Partner

    Client Testimonials

    • “A huge thank you to Nicole (and the Sanford Heisler team) for your expertise, persistence and care in resolving my discrimination case. As legal issues inevitably involve the unexpected and often ...”

      - Former Client
    • “Saba Bireda and team [ James Hannaway and Niamh Lang ] helped us navigate a challenging time, both professionally and personally, with determined resolve, expert advice and consistent kindness—we were ...”

      - David W., Investor & Advisor
    • “Sanford Heisler and Sharp were my attorneys and I am so grateful they were. They were genuinely concerned for me and my family's success in a work related legal matter. They kept me informed and ...”

      - Tommy Bibb
    • “Russell and David are extraordinary attorneys. Focused on detail but also the human side of events. Stellar in all regards.”

      - Former Client
    • “Russell and his team has a very good hands on approach when handling tough situations. I would’ve highly recommend this firm to people.”

      - T.W.
    • “The firm, particularly Deborah Marcuse, treated me with kindness as well as the best expert guidance. Forever indebted to them.”

      - Suzy Reingold
    • “Working with this firm was a very positive experience for me, personally.”

      - Former Client
    • “His knowledge of the law, professionalism, pragmatism and calm manner made a potentially stressful process that much smoother and easier. It also helped lead to a successful and fair outcome.”

      - Senior International Development Professional
    • “Their support and care gave me the comfort and security I needed to ensure that the situation would be resolved in an amicable way. I am forever grateful for the attention and care that was given to my case.”

      - Former Client
    • “I am appreciative of the level of professionalism and care that I received while working with Kate , James , and Grace . I felt that the team's passionate and informative approach was what led to our ...”

      - Former Client, COO
    • “I’m so grateful to have had Melinda as my lawyer. She is passionate, compassionate, and fierce at the same time. She is everything you could ever want in an employment lawyer.”

      - Former Client
    • “Kate Mueting was indispensable when it came to reviewing my severance package. She lent her experienced, professional eye not just to the four corners of the document, but also to the broader scope of ...”

      - Former Client
    • “This Firm has proven again and again it has the necessary talent, experience, intelligence, creativity, and resources to represent workers and whistleblowers successfully against even the country’s largest employers.”

      - Lorene Schaefer, Esq., President of WinWinResolve.com and Former GC of GE Transportation
    • “Collectively the SHS team represented the highest level of professionalism, integrity, and passionate care for justice that I have ever witnessed in my career.”

      - David Chen, a Former Client
    • “Everyone I interacted with at Sanford Heisler Sharp was not only accomplished and brilliant at what they do, but also good people with good values.”

      - Former Client
    • “Each member of the Sanford Heisler Sharp team shows ultimate professionalism, mastery of the law, unwavering dedication to the clients and passion for the cause. And most important to me, kindness and compassion.”

      - Former Client Donna Kassman, Lead Plaintiff in KPMG Gender Discrimination Class Action
    • “As an attorney on the defense side, I can say there is simply no one better than Sanford Heisler Sharp. That view is shared by defense attorneys around the country. They outwork the other side, master the law and facts, and achieve great results.”

      - Maria Hallas, Attorney and Journalist
    • “Sanford Heisler Sharp have taken the pharmaceutical industry by storm. They are shattering the glass ceiling imposed on women by pharma’s old boys’ club.”

      - Jacqueline Pena, Lead Plaintiff in The Class Action Wellens v. Daiichi
    • “I deeply appreciated not only [the Firm’s] astute legal counsel, but also the understanding and human touch they used at every turn. . . . As a lawyer myself, I felt privileged to have gotten the chance to work with them.”

      - Female Law Partner
    • “I contacted SHS because it has a stellar reputation as a champion for workplace gender equality. That reputation is well-deserved; SHS is a deft negotiator, a voracious advocate, and – most importantly – knows how to get results.”

      - Former Client and VP of a Major Technology Company
    • “The team at Sanford Heisler consists of great people who are not only very skillful in the legal domain, but are also wonderful human beings with the highest degree of empathy for their clients.”

      - A Female Director in a Tech Company
    • “Thank you again to you all for representing me on this matter. You are all phenomenal. I am very grateful for your knowledge, professionalism and compassion.”

      - Big Law Attorney
    • “The result was extraordinary.”

      - Marc Thomas, Attorney and Former CEO of GE Aviation Materials
    • “Navigating the path to justice.”

      - Alexander Prout, Managing Director, Head of Asia Pacific at Deutsche Asset Management
    • “Passionate pursuit of justice.”

      - Chessy Prout, rape survivor and author of I Have the Right To
    • “I could not have had a better representation for my case.”

      - Former Client
    • “Their professionalism and humanity, coupled with their passion for fairness and transparency, are at the core of their success.”

      - Senior VP and Global Head in Cancer Research
    • “I can’t thank them enough.”

      - Former Client
    • “I think she is masterful at molding her advocacy beautifully around the needs and the personality of her client without compromising the strength of the representation one bit.”

      - Former Client
    • “I appreciate your team’s efforts in assisting me in this matter.”

      - Former Client