Therese CannataMs. Cannata is a founding member and the current managing partner of the firm, with over 40 years of experience as lead counsel in jury trials, court trials, administrative proceedings, and arbitrations in both state and federal court. She also works with individuals and businesses throughout the state to resolve employment disputes and environmental issues before they reach the courtroom.

Ms. Cannata acquired significant jury trial experience while a senior trial attorney at the San Francisco Public Defender's Office (1980-1985) under the leadership of Jeff Brown and Peter Keane. Ms. Cannata thereafter joined Morrison & Foerster as an associate attorney (1986-1989), representing corporate clients in antitrust, intellectual property, "white collar" crime, and commercial fraud actions in state and federal courts. She then joined Alborg & Dictor which became Alborg, Veiluva & Cannata LLP in 1996. With offices in Walnut Creek and San Francisco, Ms. Cannata developed her business litigation practice in the areas of real estate, professional liability, partnership dissolutions, accounting fraud, and commercial lease disputes. She founded this firm in 2003 with her law partners, Tom O’Toole and Michael Ching, with the commitment to continue to have a presence in San Francisco and Walnut Creek. As the firm has grown, we’ve been drawn to courthouses and conference rooms throughout the state to serve our clients.

Her law partners have complemented her trial practice by adding their dynamic practice groups. Mr. O’Toole offers corporate, trust and real estate transaction services. Mr. Olson and Mr. Field lead the media law and Public Records Act practice group. Ms. Cannata has teamed with Mr. Olson in several significant employment law cases, including representing whistleblowers in claims against the City and County of San Francisco and the City of Alameda.

Ms. Cannata also added two practice areas of law to the firm’s resume. She represents management level public employees throughout the state, including City Managers, City Attorneys, and County Administrators, in employment matters, including contract negotiations and separation agreements. Ms. Cannata also represents businesses in environmental law disputes, relating to, for example, compliance with the Clean Water Act, California General Permit for Industrial Activities, and Proposition 65.

Whether representing individuals, small businesses, family trusts, or large corporations, Ms. Cannata applies her energy and experience to each of her cases to solve tough legal problems. She works with each client to identify case objectives, develop effective settlement strategies, and ensure that the case is ready for trial should that time arrive. She values teamwork and a commitment to excellence – in service to the firm’s clients and as members of the legal profession. Ms. Cannata understands that consistent case management and regular communication saves litigation dollars for her clients.

Ms. Cannata completed her undergraduate studies at San Francisco State University in 1976, majoring in Urban Studies, and received her J.D. at University of San Francisco, School of Law in 1979. During law school, her focus was on the practical applications of law in the community, and she completed externships with San Francisco Neighborhood Legal Assistance Foundation (the Immigration Unit), the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and Marin County Public Defender’s Office. She was admitted to the California State Bar in 1979, and thereafter admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court in the Northern, Southern, Central and Eastern Districts of California, the U.S. Court of Appeal, Ninth Circuit, and the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. She was a certified Criminal Law Specialist from 1983 to 1994.

Ms. Cannata has maintained her commitment to community service during her legal career. She regularly volunteers to judge high school and law school moot court programs. She has been a regular faculty member for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA) for over two decades teaching at deposition and trial programs for over two decades. More recently, she has worked with fellow NITA faculty members to teach the art of taking depositions on a Zoom platform. Ms. Cannata also volunteers her time along with other parishioners at St. Ignatius Church to run the Shelter Meal Program serving homeless adults and families in San Francisco.

Ms. Cannata was born in Houston, Texas. Her Sicilian grandparents and parents taught her about life through food – growing it, preparing it, and sharing family meals. When not in trial, that is what she most enjoys, while listening to San Francisco Giants games on the radio. She is married to Robert Bowman (a journalist and amazing cook) and they reside in San Francisco, California, where they raised their three children, who now happily pursue careers other than law.

Ms. Cannata can be reached by e-mail at:

Managing Partner

San Francisco Office
100 Pine Street, Suite 350
San Francisco, California 94111
Telephone: 415.409.8900

Practice Areas

  • Trial Practice
  • Commercial & Real Estate Litigation
  • Probate & Trust Litigation
  • Employment Law
  • Environmental & Regulatory Law