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Gerloni S. Cotton

Associate

Gerloni is an accomplished litigator who brings her diverse expertise in white collar defense, complex commercial litigation, and government and public service to every case and client.

Overview

Gerloni works closely with clients to solve their most complex legal issues, be they criminal or civil, or at the investigation, trial, or appellate stages. Gerloni represents companies, executives, and individuals in high-profile white-collar cases and in complex civil business disputes across the country.

Prior to joining Bienert | Katzman, Gerloni had an impactful career in both the private and public sector. As an associate at Boies Schiller Flexner, Gerloni represented clients in a wide range of industries, including healthcare, music and entertainment, and technology start-ups. While there, Gerloni also maintained a robust pro bono practice, representing several domestic violence survivors in family court proceedings. Gerloni served as Associate Chair of the firm’s pro bono committee and sat on the diversity hiring committee. Currently, Gerloni serves on the board of the Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice, an organization dedicated to providing no-cost representation to low-income survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.

Prior to her work in private practice, Gerloni was a trial attorney with the Federal Defenders of San Diego, where she was appointed to represent low-income people accused of immigration, drug, and border-related offenses. While there, Gerloni tried several high-stakes jury trials to verdict and litigated in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Gerloni appeared in hundreds of federal criminal cases and developed a reputation amongst federal judges and prosecutors alike as a fierce and talented advocate.  As a Federal Defender, Gerloni obtained a complete reversal of a client’s conviction from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, in which the Circuit Court based its decision on a Miranda issue that Gerloni briefed and litigated in the trial court.

Gerloni began her legal career as a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Salvador Mendoza Jr. of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington, where she was the first person of color to ever serve as a law clerk in the District since its inception in 1905. During law school, Gerloni served as a Judicial Extern to the Honorable Consuelo Bland Marshall, U.S. District Court Judge for the Central District of California.

During law school, Gerloni was recognized nationally for her student activism. As the co-chair of the Black Law Students Association (BLSA), Gerloni shepherded the “33” campaign, which shed light on the fact that there were only 33 Black students (out of 1100) enrolled at UCLA School of Law.  Gerloni was featured on the Melissa Harris Perry Show on MSNBC and helped produce, and was featured in, a viral mini documentary entitled “33.” The video has since been cited in several scholarly articles. Prior to law school, Gerloni was a first and fourth grade teacher in New York City. 

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