201701.09
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Aaron Olsen Promoted to Partner

Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck has promoted attorney Aaron Olsen, who earlier this year served as co-lead class counsel in litigation against Donald Trump and Trump University, to partner, the firm has announced. The promotion took effect January 1, 2017.

A graduate of California Western School of Law, Olsen has spent the last seven years of his practice as an associate in ZHE’s employment law and consumer litigation departments. He focuses his practice on representing employees in all aspects of labor and employment litigation in federal and state courts and is experienced in prosecuting complex class action suits, including consumer fraud actions, product defect cases, wage and hour actions, and unfair competition and false advertising claims, among others. Late last year, Olsen was part of a multi-lawyer team that negotiated a $25 million settlement on behalf of students who attended Donald Trump’s Trump University. He was the first lawyer to field the phone call from and investigate the claims of Tarla Makaeff, who would eventually become the class representative in the case, and was instrumental in prosecuting the nearly seven-year litigation against Trump and his company.

Olsen has obtained millions of dollars in damages for his individual employee clients and has negotiated hundreds of settlements in labor and employment cases for causes of action including wrongful termination, harassment, retaliation, and misclassification. His work has also resulted in significant changes to employers’ labor practice across California, which has had a ripple effect in positively changing the lives of thousands of workers throughout the state.

Over the past few years, Olsen served as co-lead counsel for a nationwide consumer class of purchasers of an allegedly defective power adapter in a consumer product defect class action against Apple, Inc. In re MagSafe Apple Power Adapter Litig., Case No. C 09-01911 JW.  He also served as co-lead counsel for a nationwide consumer class action against Sony Electronics, Inc., which alleged fundamental flaws in the design and/or manufacturing process in the company’s VAIO Touchpad Notebooks. In Re Sony Vaio Computer Notebook Trackpad Litigation, Case No. 09-CV-02109-AJB-MDD (S.D. Cal.).

In 2011, Olsen and ZHE Managing Partner Alreen Haeggquist obtained a successful trial verdict on behalf of clients in a wage and hour, trade secret misappropriation, and breach of contract action. In addition to the trial verdict, ZHE persuaded the Court to find that the opposing party brought the action in bad faith, resulting in a substantial damages and attorney fee award for the firm’s clients. The judgment was affirmed in full on appeal.

Olsen was selected in 2015, 2016 and 2017 as a Super Lawyers Rising Star, an honor received by less than 2.5 percent of attorneys in California each year. He was also nominated as one of San Diego’s Outstanding Young Attorneys in 2011 and 2012.

“Aaron is a tremendous asset to the firm, and the partnership promotion rewards his incredible dedication and hard work,” Haeggquist said.

Olsen is a 2008 graduate of California Western School of Law, where she served as editor-in-chief of California Western School of Law Commentary and was an Executive Board Member of the Student Bar Association. He holds a B.A. in Business Finance from the University of Utah. Prior to joining ZHE, he was an attorney at Nicholas Boylan, APC, and served as a law clerk at Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd and the San Diego County Office of the Public Defender.