Mark D. Petersen

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Mark Petersen has a broad-based litigation practice emphasizing complex securities issues, consumer fraud claims, construction issues, entertainment law, and general business litigation.

Mr. Petersen brings substantial trial experience to his work. He has successfully represented both plaintiffs and defendants in employment matters (including a professional football team) ranging from non-competition and unfair trade practices to sexual harassment. He has represented a large biotech company related to nucleic acid testing of blood, and has defended officers and directors of biotech, financial and software companies in securities and shareholder lawsuits. He has also worked on many cases in the entertainment industry.  Among others, he settled a case for a record producer suing a major recording personality for unpaid royalties, and he defended a well-known recording artist in a lawsuit that received national media attention. 

Mr. Petersen has worked extensively on energy issues and construction matters, representing engineers and other design professionals, construction managers, private owners and contractors in numerous complex matters. He recently completed the successful defense of an international steam generator designer/manufacturer for claims regarding defects at a nuclear power plant. The damages alleged were $7.6 billion, and Mr. Petersen’s client was cleared of any liability. He also represented an international contractor related to the construction of a $100 million computer chip manufacturing facility, and was able to resolve the case through mediation before any litigation had begun.  Currently he represents an international design firm in some of the many lawsuits that have been filed concerning San Francisco’s luxury Millennium Tower, which has been sinking and tilting since its construction. 

Mr. Petersen’s mediation practice includes serving as a mediator for the Bar Association of San Francisco’s (BASF) Early Settlement Program, the Contra Costa County EASE Program, the Northern District of California’s Panel of Mediators, the American Arbitration Association’s Panel of Mediators (and its panel of Commercial Arbitrators), and as a Judge Pro Tem in San Francisco for mediation of cases going to trial. In the past five years, he has settled nearly 200 cases as a mediator. He has completed the American Arbitration Association's Mediator and Arbitrator Training, BASF’s Advanced Mediator Training, the American Bar Association Advanced Mediation Training, and the U.S. District Court (N.D. Cal.) Advanced Mediation Training Program. He serves as chair of the Bar Association of San Francisco’s Mediation Committee.  

He has served as vice-chair of the firm, chair of the Litigation Department, and as a member of the Management Team. He was instrumental in the formation of the Professional Development Committee, and he is currently chair of the Partnership Admissions Committee.


  • Board of Directors, Meals on Wheels of San Francisco (2015-present)
  • Board of Directors, University of California Hastings Foundation Board of Trustees (2017-present)
  • Member, State Bar of California, Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee
  • Chair, Bar Association of San Francisco, Mediation Committee 
  • Member, Association for Conflict Resolution
  • Member, The Mediation Society of Northern California