Elyse W. Whitehead

Elyse Whitehead joined Keesal, Young & Logan in 2010 and is a shareholder in the firm’s San Francisco office.  Elyse regularly defends financial services firms and employers in state and federal courts, as well as in various arbitration forums.  Her practice focuses primarily on the litigation of employment and securities matters, including class actions.  She also has significant experience with litigation of real estate and professional liability matters.

In her employment practice, Elyse regularly defends employers in cases involving claims for discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wrongful termination, defamation, wrongful interference, breach of contract, unfair competition, wage and hour, and other related claims.  Elyse also advises clients regarding compliance with employment laws, personnel issues, and preparation of employee manuals.

As part of her securities practice, she has defended banks and financial services firms, including securities brokers and investment banks, in judicial, arbitration and class proceedings involving claims for unsuitable investments, unauthorized transfers, fraud, negligence, violation of federal and state securities laws, violation of NASD and NYSE and FINRA rules, breach of contract, and breach of fiduciary duty.  Elyse has also defended federal, state, and FINRA claims alleging the aiding and abetting of criminal activities (e.g., money laundering, fraudulent wire transfers, and Ponzi schemes).

In addition, Elyse has represented attorneys, real estate professionals and construction lenders in a variety of cases involving claims of professional liability/negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, unfair business practices, violations of federal and state real estate laws, and fraud.  Real estate cases defended have included claims of alleged inadequate disclosures in connection with the development of hundreds of condominium units, work stoppage and lien priority issues on construction sites, alleged fraudulent transfers of real estate interests, contract disputes, and construction defects.  In the construction defect context, Elyse has experience managing pre-litigation Calderon and SB 800 processes.

Elyse was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia.  She graduated with highest honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2007 with a B.A. in psychology and American studies.  While at UNC, Elyse was named to the Dean’s List eight times and was inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa honors society.  She earned her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, in 2010 where she graduated magna cum laude and was elected to the Order of the Coif and the Thurston Society.  Elyse ranked 7th in her class of 421 students at Hastings.  She served as a production editor for the Hastings Law Journal.  The Journal published her note, which received the Roger J. Traynor Student Writing Competition Award for published work of outstanding merit.

Elyse was admitted to the California Bar in December 2010.  She was recognized by Super Lawyers Magazine as one of the Northern California legal community’s “Rising Stars” from 2013 through 2017.