On a typical day you’ll find Katy, Ad Astra’s managing partner and boss lady extraordinaire, out on the front lines advocating fiercely for her clients — as well as behind the scenes, helping to build a law firm full of wonderful people she’s proud of.

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take” is one of Katy’s life mantras, and she’s never backed down from pursuing the outcome that represents a true victory for each client.

Whether it’s settling a dispute between co-owners of a business, representing individuals in breach of fiduciary duty and unfair competition claims, or defending private companies in a securities action, Katy’s mix of empathy and determination makes her an ideal teammate, supporter, and champion in any legal action.

Fellow attorneys regularly seek out Katy’s expertise as well, as she has expertise in emerging fields such as the cannabis industry.

From tech companies to breweries, cannabis businesses to startups, Katy uses her razor-sharp legal skills to enable California’s brightest stars to do what they do best: focus on their businesses and their lives while she handles the disputes that are holding them back.

When she’s not securing victories for her clients, she’s likely camping with  two children, working on remodeling her new house, cooking for friends, or planning her next beach vacation.

State Bar of California
Northern District of California

J.D., University of San Francisco 2009
B.A., Social Science, University of the Pacific, 2004

Representative Matters

Partnership Disputes

  • Resolved numerous disputes among business partners/LLC members/Boards of Directors, replete with breaches of fiduciary duties, in a wide range of industries, including legal cannabis.
  • Settled dispute between purported owners of a cannabis business holding an equity permit where the party forming the basis for the equity permit was pushed out after permit issued.
  • Without resorting to litigation, settled a dispute between co-owners of a construction materials business.
  • Resolved dispute between brother and sister co-owners of successful publishing business.

Business Litigation

  • Obtained dismissal with prejudice on summary judgment for a claim of wrongful termination in violation of public policy for a major cannabis brand.
  • Defended first impression investment fraud in the cannabis industry.
  • Litigated fraud and breach of contract claims against seller of an accounting firm.
  • Defended fraud claim in real estate purchase and sale action.
  • Represented major government agency in a professional malpractice action against a leading accounting firm.
  • Successfully defended a comptroller of a public company against securities fraud charges brought by the SEC.
  • Represented prominent doctor against doctor’s insurance company for defense coverage for mass tort action.
  • Defended business owner/attorney against unfair competition allegations brought by the California Attorney General.
  • Represented individuals in trade secrets and unfair competition claims brought by former employers.
  • Defended restaurant owners in breach of contract actions brought by banks and commercial lenders.
  • Obtained large sums of past due monies in collection actions on behalf of law firms.
  • Successfully settled a lawsuit based on breach of an oral agreement for sale of a San Francisco restaurant two weeks before trial.
  • Obtained a six figure settlement one week before trial on a breach of contract claim in San Jose.
  • Defended high net worth individual against allegations of sex torts and fraud.

Computer Fraud and Abuse Act/CDAFA

  • Represented national IT provider firm in lawsuit filed by national healthcare products manufacturer for violations of California Penal Code section 502 and Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
  • Settled just before trial an e-commerce business owners’ claims against contract consultants under Computer Fraud and Abuse act and California Penal Code section 502.
  • Represented a large law firm for computer hacking claims against a rival law firm.
  • Defended claims of section 502 violation brought by seller of an accounting firm against the buyer.

Real Estate & Construction

  • Resolved complex Marvin claim for ownership of real property pursuant to oral agreement between cohabitating couple.
  • Obtained TRO against a developer who excavated without proper notice to neighbors.
  • Represented a large general contractor in a complex construction defect claim brought by homeowners, including cross-complaints against numerous sub-contractors.
  • Obtained dismissal of a claim for violation of San Francisco’s short term housing law on first demurrer.
  • Settled numerous neighbor vs. neighbor disputes regarding property lines and easements.
  • Obtained settlement for homeowners needing a new roof following a failed home inspection and negligent referral of home inspector by real estate agent.
  • Tenaciously represented a commercial lessor in an over $2 million purchase transaction in the San Francisco Bay Area which took over one year to complete.
  • Defended a commercial tenant in an unlawful detainer action and obtained a ruling in my client’s favor with an award of attorneys’ fees.


  • Obtained trademark protection for brewery clients, restaurant clients, retailers, and financial service clients.
  • Settled complex trademark disputes for vitamin and supplement manufacturer.
  • Litigated trademark disputes involving cannabis businesses in state court and before the Trademark Trial and Appeals Board.

General Counsel Work

  • Serves as outside general counsel to several Bay Area businesses, including breweries, service firms, construction companies, and cannabis-focused businesses.

Reported Cases

NovelPoster v. Javitch Canfield Group, 140 F. Supp. 3d 938, 140 F. Supp. 3d 954


October 26-27, 2022
Panelist (Topic Pending)
Insuring Cannabis Summit 2022

Past Engagements:

September 10-11, 2022
“Adult Use Legalization in Germany: The Legal Challenges”
StageOne, Zurich, Switzerland
Cannabis Business Expo & Conference

September 15, 2021
“Cannabis and Real Estate”
Sequoyah Country Club
Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW East Bay)

August 5, 2021
“Practical Advice for Representing Clients in the Sale and Lease of Real Estate for Cannabis Use”
The 2021 Summer Cannabis (Law) Series
California Lawyers Association

June 22, 2021
“California Cannabis Industry Update”
Santa Clara Bar Association

May 18, 2021
“Cannabis & Real Estate”
Chicago Mortgage Association

May 4, 2021
“Cannabis Law Today”
Cannalaw Summit

April 20, 2021
“Cannabis Legal Issues in Real Estate Transactions”
(Virtual CLE)

April 12, 2021
“Cannabis Business Fundamentals 2021”
(Virtual CLE)
Practising Law Institute 

November 9, 2020
“Cannabis & IP Law Litigation 2020 Update”
(Virtual CLE)
Shelter in Place Institute

October 8, 2020
“Cannabis Law Institute”
9-day Virtual & Educational Conference
InterNational Cannabis Bar Association

October 30, 2020
“Insuring Cannabis Summit 2020”
(Virtual Event)
Insuring Cannabis Summit

August 27, 2020
“Cannabis Law & Business Fundamentals”
(Virtual CLE)
Practising Law Institute (PLI)

July 24, 2020
“The Cannabis Regulatory Rounds”
(Virtual CLE)
InterNational Cannabis Bar Association

June 30, 2020
“Searching for Stability: Surviving in the World’s Largest Cannabis Market”
(Virtual Event)

June 16, 2020
“Advising  California Cannabis Companies”
(Virtual CLE)
The Bar Association of San Francisco

May 26, 2020
“The Intersection of CEQA & the Cannabis Industry”
(Virtual CLE)
The Bar Association of San Francisco

April 24, 2020
Real Property Section of the California BAR

March 26, 2020
San Francisco Lawyers Network

March 20, 2020
“Seventh Annual Commercial Real Estate Symposium”
Berstein (555 California), San Francisco
Lerman Law Partners

February 27, 2020
“Business & Environmental Issues in Cannabis & Industrial Hemp”
Oakland Marriott City Center, Oakland
The Seminar Group

February 24, 2020
“Structuring Enforceable Contracts in the Cannabis Industry”
CLE Webinar
Strattford Publications

February 7, 2020
“Cannabis Industry Mergers And Acquisitions”
Hilton Union Square (San Francisco)
International Cannabis Business Conference

November 13, 2019
“Navigating the Complexities of Building a Cannabis Business”
360 Labs San Francisco
Early Growth Financial Services

October 17, 2019
“Cannabis and California Real Estate: What Realtors Need to Know About the Cannabis Industry”
Bellevue Club, Oakland
Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW East Bay)

June 17, 2019
“Structuring Enforceable Contracts in the Cannabis Industry”
Clearlaw Institute Webinar

June 14, 2019
MJ BizCon
New Orleans Morial Convention Center

Chief Revenue Officer for the International Cannabis Bar Association

Group Leader Assistant, ProVisors San Francisco IX Group

Berkeley Rotary Club Member

  1. What is your favorite vacation spot?Anywhere on a beach with a beer
  2. What is your favorite food?Bean and Cheese Burritos
  3. Favorite quote?
    “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”— Wayne Gretzky
    — Michael Scott