Cheryl Priest Ainsworth is an experienced litigator and trial attorney. Her experience ranges from representing individuals to family run companies, as well as multi-billion dollar national corporations, and taking on big banks and rap stars. Her practice involves business, entertainment, employment, professional negligence, intellectual property, and real estate disputes, among others. Cheryl represents plaintiffs and defendants in diverse industries including hospitality, film, music, professional sports, fashion, warehousing and distribution, commercial real estate, and technology.
She began her career in Florida, serving as a business and employment litigator at Holland & Knight. In 2007, she left Holland & Knight to join Gibson Dunn & Crutcher’s Los Angeles office, working on some of the largest cases in the nation. Cheryl joined RosenSaba, LLP in 2017.
Cheryl graduated first in her class and Order of the Coif from the University of Florida College of Law. She served as Senior Symposium Editor of the Florida Law Review, which published her article, ‘Civil Procedure: the Right to Sue Under Section 1983,’ 55 Fla. L. Rev. 753 (2003). Cheryl also attended graduate school at the top-rated University of Florida College of Journalism, where she served as a features reporter for news/sports radio station, WRUF. Her undergraduate degree, also from the University of Florida, is in Political Science, a subject about which she remains passionate – almost as passionate as she is about the Gators.
PROFESSIONAL HIGHLIGHTS AND REPRESENTATIVE EXPERIENCE
- Defeating Wells Fargo at trial as first-chair trial counsel.
- Litigating matter to a complete trial victory with an award of damages against multi-platinum rap artist, Lil Wayne.
- Prevailing over two large international firms on two dispositive motions for a warehousing and distribution company in a multi-million dollar case involving business torts, breach of contract, unfair competition, defamation, and misappropriation of trade secrets.
- Defeating a Motion for Summary Adjudication brought by the Michael Jackson Estate against her client, Michael Jackson’s former manager, in a music royalties dispute, a result which resulted in a favorable resolution of claims.
- Obtaining an injunction and seizure order on behalf of National Football League Properties against purveyors of counterfeit NFL merchandise.
- Serving as a temporary Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney in East Los Angeles.
- Selection by and successful completion of the Traditional Trial Advocacy Project of the Los Angeles County Bar Association.
HONORS & AWARDS
- Named a Southern California Rising Star by Super Lawyers Magazine and Los Angeles Magazine from 2013-2017
- Named a Top Woman Attorney of Southern California by Super Lawyers Magazine and Los Angeles Magazine from 2013-2017
- Named a Florida Legal Elite Up and Comer by Florida Trend Magazine in 2007
- Named to the Tampa Bay Business Journal’s Top 30 Under 30 in 2007
- Highest Grade in the Class Awards for Employment Law, Corporations, Business Organizations, Intellectual Property, Intellectual Property Litigation, Child, Parent, and the State, Criminal Procedure, and Legal Drafting
- Airth, Sisler, Clayton, and Warren Scholar
- Florida Law Review Fellowship
- Civil Procedure: The Right to Sue Under Section 1983, 55 Fla. L. Rev. 753 (2003) – Florida Law Review
- Ohio Court Holds University Liable for Student’s Rape in a Dormitory Shower – Holland & Knight Employment Law News (2007)
- Trademarks and Business Litigation annual updates for Continuing Education of the Bar (CEB) (2010-2012)
SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS AND PRESS
- “ATTN: What Kesha’s Lawsuit Really Means” (2016) – https://www.attn.com/stories/6378/kesha-lawsuit-details-history
- “Serena Williams and Equal Pay”, March 22, 2016, DreX Radio on KGO 810, San Francisco (audio: https://audioboom.com/posts/4338553-march-22-2016-7pm)
- “Apple Music- Game Changer?”, June 24, 2015, DreX Radio on KGO 810, San Francisco (audio: https://audioboom.com/posts/3314051-drex-and-heather-june-24-2015-8pm)
- “Business Torts in Real World Litigation” – University of Florida, College of Law (2014)
- “Conflict Resolution, Trials, Mediation, and Arbitration” – University of Florida College of Liberal Arts & Sciences Ambassadors Leadership Program (2014)
- “Victory was Sweet Against Rapper Lil’ Wayne” – FlaLaw (2013)
BOARD MEMBERSHIPS, ENGAGEMENTS AND AFFILIATIONS
- Host Committee – Equality California’s LA Equality Awards
- Honorary Board – Trial Lawyers Charities (2016-2017)
- Step Up Women’s Network – Luminary Circle
- Women’s Media Center – She Source – Legal Expert and Media Commentator
- Westside German Shepherd Rescue
- Opening Doors for Children Mock Trial Co-Chair (2005-2007)
- California Bar
- Florida Bar (inactive)
- United States District Court for the Northern and Central Districts of California
- United States District Court for the Northern, Middle, and Southern Districts of Florida
- University of Florida, J.D., magna cum laude, #1 class ranking, Order of the Coif (2004)
- University of Florida, B.A. Political Science, cum laude, McLaughlin Scholar (1998)
- Saint Stephen’s Episcopal School, Bradenton, Florida (1995)