Traynor is a senior counsel in the Cooley Godward Litigation
department. Resident in the San Francisco office, he has
been with the Firm since 1963 and served as a partner for
over thirty-five years (1969-2004).
He specializes in intellectual
property, business, First Amendment, and appellate litigation,
in internal corporate investigations, and in product liability
and risk management counseling. Varied cases at the trial
and appellate level have involved him in appearances before
state courts and federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme
Court, and also before administrative agencies and arbitrators.
He is a member of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers.
He also serves as a mediator for the U.S. District Court
in San Francisco.
Prior to joining Cooley, Mr. Traynor served from 1961 to
1963 as a deputy attorney general of the State of California,
engaging in public law practice and litigation.
Mr. Traynor attended Harvard Law
School, where he received a J.D. in 1960. He graduated from
the University of California, Berkeley, in 1955 with B.A.
in Economics. Prior to attending law school, Mr. Traynor
served two years in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Mr. Traynor is President of the
American Law Institute .
He presently serves as an adviser
for the Restatement (Third) of Restitution, and previously
served as an adviser for the Restatement (Third) of Unfair
Competition (1994), the Restatement (Third) of Torts: Products
Liability (1998), the Restatement (Third) of Torts: Apportionment
of Liability (2000), and the 1988 revisions to the Restatement
(Second) of Conflict of Laws.
In 2004, the U.S. Court of Appeals
for the Ninth Circuit awarded him its outstanding lawyer
award. The award, given in the name of John P. Frank, recognizes
a lawyer who has "demonstrated outstanding character
and integrity; dedication to the rule of law; proficiency
as a trial and appellate lawyer; success in promoting collegiality
among members of the bench and bar; and a lifetime of service
to the federal courts of the Ninth Circuit."
In 2002, the American Academy of
Arts & Sciences elected him a Fellow.
In 1995, the American Association
for the Advancement of Science named him a Fellow “for
research and publication on issues at the intersection of
science and law in biotechnology, the environment, and information
Mr. Traynor is a member of the
board of directors of the Environmental Law Institute, the
Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and the Developmental
Studies Center. He also is a life fellow of the American
Bar Foundation, a member and past president (1973) of the
Bar Association of San Francisco, a past chairman and president
of the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund (now Earthjustice),
and a past chairman and trustee of the Head Royce School.
He also served as a member of the
American Bar Association Commission on Multidisciplinary
Practice, the ABA Task Force on Law Schools and the Profession,
the Board of Overseers of the RAND Institute for Civil Justice,
and as co-chair of the Unified Environmental Statute Commission
of the California Environmental Protection Agency.
He teaches periodically at the
School of Law (Boalt Hall) at U.C. Berkeley (Remedies, 1982-89;
Conflict of Laws, 1996-1998), and in continuing legal education
Mr. Traynor is listed in the current
editions of The Best Lawyers in America, Who’s Who
in America, and Who’s Who in American Law.