Attorneys

Attorneys

Claire Loebs Davis

Shareholder | Seattle | 206.223.7060 | davisc@lanepowell.com

Areas of Practice

Claire Loebs Davis is a seasoned litigator who focuses on using her commercial litigation experience to assist nonprofit entities and advocate for animal and environmental causes. Claire is Co-chair of Lane Powell’s Nonprofit Group, Co-chair of the Animal and Earth Advocacy Group, and Chair of the Seattle Pro Bono Committee.

Claire joined Lane Powell from Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati in December 2012. She graduated from the University of Michigan Law School in 2003 (class rank 2 of 387), and clerked for the Honorable Richard Nygaard of the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

Claire has more than a decade of experience in commercial litigation, including trial and appellate advocacy, and securities and corporate governance litigation. She has represented a wide range of companies and their directors and officers, including Ambassador’s Group, Biovest International, Cell Therapeutics, Dendreon Corporation, Lihua International, Micron Technology, Nordstrom, PremierWest Bancorp, Primo Water, Sterling Financial, Washington Mutual, Washington Banking, WSB Financial Group and Zumiez.

In addition, Claire has assisted nonprofit organizations with a variety of legal needs, including helping them to incorporate, draft governance documents and file for federal 501c3 tax-exempt status; advising them on employment matters, risk assessment and issues of corporate governance; and representing them in a variety of commercial disputes, such as actions for breach of contract, RICO violations and defamation.

Throughout her legal career, Claire has focused on advocacy on behalf of animals and the environment. After her clerkship, she worked as general counsel and legal consultant for Best Friends Animal Society, the country’s largest animal sanctuary and a leading national proponent of companion animal welfare. Since leaving Best Friends to enter private practice, Claire has represented nonprofit organizations including the Animal Legal Defense Fund and the Center for Biological Diversity, in addition to multiple regional animal rescues and sanctuaries. She has also been extensively involved in community advocacy efforts, including leading a successful grassroots effort to reform King County, Washington’s animal shelters.

Claire defended the former administrative director of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society in a contempt action brought by the Institute for Cetacean Research, a Japanese whaling entity, related to Sea Shepherd’s interference with Japan’s killing of whales in the Southern Ocean. Following a two-week trial in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and extensive appellate practice, Claire secured a defense verdict for her client. She subsequently represented Sea Shepherd and its founder, Paul Watson, in litigation against the Institute for Cetacean Research that raised multiple unique questions of standing, animals rights and international law.

As Chair of the Seattle Pro Bono Committee, Claire led the citywide effort to provide legal assistance at SeaTac airport to travelers affected by President Trump’s travel bans. Claire has shown a commitment throughout her career to pro bono work, advising numerous nonprofit entities, volunteering at a variety of local legal clinics, representing asylum seekers in immigration court, working with the American Civil Liberties Union to bring an action against the state of California on behalf of English language learners in the state’s public schools, and submitting amicus briefs in State of Washington v. Trump and State of Hawaii v. Trump.

Before attending law school, Claire was a newspaper reporter for several years, primarily covering legal and political issues, and winning multiple state and national writing awards.

Professional Experience

  • Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, Litigation Associate (2007-2012)
  • Best Friends Animal Society, In-House Counsel/Animal Law Consultant (2004-2007)
  • Third Circuit Court of Appeals, Judicial Clerk for Hon. Richard L. Nygaard (2003-2004)
  • Venango County District Attorney’s Office, Judicial Extern (2002-2003)
  • Franklin News-Herald and Oil City Derrick, Legal and Special Projects Reporter (1996-1999)
  • Arizona Republic, Pulliam Fellow (1995)
  • Bureau of National Affairs, Intern (1994)
  • CNN, Inside Politics, Intern (1993)

Admitted to Practice

  • Washington
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Academics

  • University of Michigan Law School (J.D., magna cum laude, 2003)
    • Order of the Coif
    • Class rank 2/38 (3.98 GPA)
    • Michigan Law Review, Contributing Editor
    • Recipient of Henry M. Bates Memorial Scholarship Award
    • Awarded Roger A. Cunningham Memorial Property Prize
    • Awarded multiple Certificates of Merit, for highest grade in Civil Procedure, Torts, Contracts and Property Classes
  • The George Washington University (B.A., magna cum laude, 1995)
    • Phi Beta Kappa
    • National Merit Scholar
    • Special Honors Degree in History
    • University Honors Program
    • IT Magazine, Co-founder and Editor-in-chief
    • The Insider, Editor-in-chief

Practice Group and Specialty Team Memberships

  • Chair, Lane Powell Pro Bono Committee, Seattle Office
  • Co-chair, Animal and Earth Advocacy
  • Co-chair, Tax-Exempt and Nonprofit Organizations
  • Securities Litigation
  • Litigation
  • Investigations, Compliance and White Collar

Representative Matters and Clients

Claire is one of the nation’s most experienced securities litigators of her generation. She has handled and managed all aspects of securities and corporate governance litigation matters, from discovery management, to motion-to-dismiss briefing and oral arguments, to strategic matters such as case development, mediations and trial preparation.

Claire was a newspaper reporter before law school, which helped her to develop skills that are key to excellent brief writing. She has specialized in developing, writing and editing briefs throughout her legal career, and has written or supervised the preparation of myriad winning motions to dismiss.

Claire has defended a broad range of securities and corporate governance litigation matters, representing clients such as Ambassadors Group, Cell Therapeutics, Dendreon, Jones Soda, Kerry Killinger (former CEO of Washington Mutual), Nighthawk Radiology, PremierWest Bancorp, Primo Water, TriQuint Semiconductor and WSB Financial Group.

TV/Radio Interviews

  • “Oregon Anti-whaling Charity Appeals to US Supreme Court,” Interviewed by Oregon Public  Broadcasting (April 29, 2015)

Publications

  • Omnicare, Inc., One Year Later: Its Salutary Impact on Securities-Fraud Class Actions in the Lower Federal Courts,” Washington Legal Foundation Critical Legal Issues Working Paper Series, Co-author (June 2016)
  • “One Year Later, Omnicare Is Proving Invaluable to Defense Bar,” Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS) Journal, Co-author (June 2016)
  • “Liability: Protecting Your Reputation,” National Association of Corporate Directors Directorship magazine, Co-author (January/February 2016)
  • “Five Securities Litigation Issues to Watch in 2016,” Law360, Co-author (January 8, 2016)
  • “Sea Shepherd Stands Fast Against Whaling Through Operation Ultimate Justice,” Wire Service, Quoted (December 1, 2015)
  • “Correcting Incorrect Opinions About Omnicare,Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS) Journal, Co-author (September 2015)
  • “Whaling Activists Settle Attack Claims for $2.55M,” Courthouse News Service, Quoted (June 11, 2015)
  • “Supreme Court Declines to Hear Sea Shepherd’s Case Against Whalers,” Just Marine News (June 9, 2015)
  • “Sea Shepherd Resolves Contempt Dispute With Whalers,” The Maritime Executive, Quoted (June 8, 2015)
  • “Whaling: Sea Shepherd Seeks U.S. Injunction,” The Maritime Executive, Quoted (May 27, 2015)
  • “Sea Shepherd Seeks U.S. Injunction Against Japanese Whaling,” Wire Service, Quoted (May 27, 2015)
  • “Sea Shepherd Tries Novel Tack in Appeal of Piracy Ruling,” Environment & Energy Publishing, Quoted (May 7, 2015)
  • “Sea Shepherd Takes Whalers to High Court,” Courthouse News Service, Quoted (May 4, 2015)
  • “Oregon Anti-whaling Group Looks to Take Case to Supreme Court,” Portland Business Journal (April 29, 2015)
  • “Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Takes ‘Whale Wars’ to Supreme Court: Expansive Interpretation of Alien Tort Statute Endangers US Businesses, Sea Shepherd Argues,” Business Wire, Quoted (April 29, 2015)
  • “Supreme Court’s Omnicare Decision Follows Middle Path Advocated by Lane Powell and Washington Legal Foundation,” Lane Powell Legal Update, Co-author (March 26, 2015)
  • “Supreme Court’s Omnicare Decision Follows Middle Path Advocated by Lane Powell and WLF,” Washington Legal Foundation’s The Legal Pulse blog , Co-author (March 25, 2015)
  • “Supreme Court Sets High Bar for Challenging Exec Opinions,” Law360, Quoted (March 24, 2015)
  • “Omnicare Court Ponders Two Middle Paths: One Rocky, One Smooth,” Law360, Quoted (December 3, 2014)
  • “Justices Face Muddy Waters with Omnicare Middle Ground,” Law360, Quoted (November 7, 2014)
  • “Supreme Court to Hear Pensions Argument,” POLITICO Pro, Quoted (November 3, 2014)
  • “True, not False: SCOTUS ‘Omnicare’ Case Highlights Need for Clarity on Key Securities Class Action Issue,” The Legal Pulse blog, Washington Legal Foundation, Co-author (November 3, 2014)
  • “Ineffective Motions to Dismiss Erode the Power of the Reform Act,” Co-author, The Corporate Governance Advisor (July/August 2014)
  • “High Court Takes Up New Securities Conundrum in Omnicare Case,” The AM Law Litigation Daily, Quoted (March 3, 2014)
  • “Securities Defense Bar Has High Hopes Riding on Omnicare,” Law360, Quoted (March 3, 2014)
  • Halliburton: Do Plaintiffs Have a Fix in Affiliated Ute?” Law360 (February 13, 2014)
  • “Public Companies, Beware! Safe Harbor Protection Requires Thoughtful Warnings and a Sophisticated Defense,” Seattle Business magazine, Co-author (February 2014)
  • “6th Circ. Took a Wrong Turn in Omnicare,” Law360 (August 21, 2013)

Speaking Engagements

Claire has given presentations at the local and national level, including for the Washington State Bar Association and at the University of Washington, The George Washington University, and Lewis and Clark Law School.

Awards

  • Named as a “Washington Rising Star,” Super Lawyers® magazine, Securities Litigation (2010-2016)
  • Pro Bono Service Award, Wilson Sonsini (2007-2008, 2011-2012)
  • Henry Bergh Leadership Award, No Kill Advocacy Center (2009)

Professional and Community Activities

  • Board Member, Campaign for Equal Justice
  • Board Member, Municipal League Foundation
  • Board Member, Wayfind
  • Member, Pro Bono Panel, Federal Bar Association of the Western District of Washington
  • Former Chairperson, Washington State Bar Association Animal Law Section