James E. McElroy

James E. McElroy

Civil Litigation and Civil Rights

Curriculum Vitae


Principal, Law Office of James E. McElroy
Board Member, Southern Poverty Law Center
Board Member, Think Dignity
Board Chair, Advisory Board Hunger2Help/Burrito Boyz
Past Board Chair, Southern Poverty Law Center
Past Board President, San Diego Inn of Court
Past Board Member, Juvenile Justice Project of Louisiana
Past Board Member ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties
Past Board Member Consumer Attorneys of San Diego


All California Courts, United States Supreme Court, Various Federal District Courts and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals


Civil Litigation
Professional Negligence
Business Litigation
Civil Rights


San Diego County Bar Association; State Bar of California; American Bar Association; Consumer Attorneys of San Diego, Consumer Attorneys of California; American Trial Lawyers Association; San Diego Inn of Court (Past President); Louis M. Welch Inn of Court (Master).


Outstanding Attorney of the Year – San Diego County Bar Association
Distinguished Service Award – Southern Poverty Law Center
National Civil Rights Achievement Award – Anti-Defamation League
Helen Marston Religious Freedom Award – ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties
Service to the Legal Profession Award – San Diego County Bar Association
AAJ (formerly ATLA) Defense of Civil Liberties Award
Margaret Sanger Award for Distinguished Service in Protecting Women’s Rights – Planned Parenthood
Outstanding Work in Protecting the Rights of Women – Womancare Health Center
Top San Diego Attorneys (San Diego Transcript)
Super Lawyers (several years)

Certificates of Appreciation:

  • State Bar of California
  • Attorney General of California
  • San Diego Superior Court
  • San Diego County Bar Association
  • United States Marine Corps
  • Anti-Defamation League
  • Law & Politics Magazine “2008 San Diego Super Lawyers List”
  • The Juvenile Justice Project of Louisiana in recognition of service to the children of Louisiana
  • Hunger 2 Help – volunteer of the year


    San Diego County Bar Fee Dispute Arbitration Committee; San Diego County Bar Client Relations Committee; State Bar Conference of Delegates – 1990 to 2005; Chairperson, Bench/Bar Arbitration Subcommittee – 1988 to 2003; Consumer Attorneys of San Diego, Round Table Seminar Committee and Education Committee; San Diego County Bar – Litigation Section; State Bar Probation Department Monitor; State Bar Committee on Human Rights Panelist – State Bar Convention; State of California commission on the Prevention of Hate Violence; San Diego Inn of Court Board of Directors 1998 to 2005; Anti-Defamation League Civil Rights Committee.


    Adjunct Professor California Western School of Law – 1979 through 1984, Civil Law (clinic and classroom); California Western Clinical Internship Supervisor, 1984 to 2012.


    Defying Extremism – Closing Keynote Address – USD Joan Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice; American Bar Association Podcast for New Lawyers: Your First Trial; State Bar Convention Seminars: Representing Victims of Hate Crimes; Civil Litigation of Hate Motivated Violence Consumer Attorneys of California Seminar: New Trends in Torts; Lawyers Club: Litigators on the Front Lines of First Amendment Battles; Consumer Attorneys of San Diego Seminars:

    • Civil Remedies for Hate Crimes
    • Practical Aspects of Judicial Arbitration
    • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
    • Structured Settlements
    • Medical Diagnostic Testing
    • Discovery Seminar
    • Professional Negligence Seminar (Legal and Medical Malpractice);

    Handling Civil Litigation Grand Rounds: How to Avoid Medical Malpractice Suits (Seminar for Physicians); California Planned Parenthood Seminar: Use of Civil Litigation in Combating Harassment of Physicians by Operation Rescue and Other Right-to-Life Organizations – Temporary Restraining Orders vs. First Amendment Rights in Targeted Residential Picketing; San Diego Superior Court: Orientation for Arbitrators; Imperial County Superior Court: Arbitration Orientation; San Diego Superior Court: Arbitration Orientation; San Diego Superior Court: Arbitrators’ Training Panel; San Diego Inn of Court Workshop Leader; California Department of Justice, Hate Crimes Conference; Lincoln Lectures – 1997-2008; Marine Corps Equal Opportunity Officers; Various speeches and media appearances on Hate Crimes and Hate Groups, Civil Rights, Pro Choice legal issues, and Establishment Clause issues.


    Testimony before Legislative Committee Re: Hate Crimes Bill
    Testimony before San Diego City Council Re: Targeted Residential Picketing
    Testimony before City of San Diego Human Relations Commission Re: Hate Crimes
    Social Advocates for Youth
    Save The Children
    Storefront Shelter for Teens
    Judge Pro Tem for San Diego Superior Court Settlement Panel
    Author of “Collecting Judgments for Hate Crimes Victims” in the Civil Rights Acts Manual for Attorneys published by the State of California Fair Employment and Housing Commission


    University of Illinois, B.A. 1974
    University of San Diego School of Law, Juris Doctor 1977