Mary McNamara



Boalt Hall School of Law

B.A. (First Class Hon.) TRINITY COLLEGE DUBLIN, 1986
Graduated First in Class
Henry Hamilton Hunter Memorial Prize, 1986


Mary McNamara is a trial and appellate lawyer specializing in white-collar criminal defense and commercial litigation matters. She is AV-rated by Martindale Hubbell, is profiled in Chambers USA America’s Leading Lawyers, has been a Northern California Super Lawyer every year since 2003 and has been named one of the top 50 women lawyers in Northern California and top 75 women lawyers in the state of California. She was also named Best Lawyers 2012 Lawyer of the Year in White Collar Criminal Defense in San Francisco. She represents both entities and individuals in federal and state courts around the country.

Recent successes include a deferred prosecution on the eve of trial for a trading director in a high-profile criminal case involving allegations of commodities manipulation and wire fraud during the year of the California electricity crisis. In addition, she represented (with partner Ed Swanson) BALCO founder Victor Conte in a steroids distribution case involving allegations of doping by prominent athletes and achieved dismissal of most counts and a four-month prison sentence.

Ms. McNamara serves on the Northern District of California’s Fee Review Committee for Criminal Justice Act cases. In 2002, she served as co-chair of the Lawyer Representatives for the Northern District of California to the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference. In 2005, Ms. McNamara chaired the Judiciary Committee of the Bar Association of San Francisco and in 2007 became the representative for Criminal Justice Act lawyers for the Northern District of California. In 2011, she served on the Merit Selection Panel to choose two magistrate judges for the Northern District of California. After law school, Ms. McNamara served as a law clerk to the Hon. Thomas Gibbs Gee of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.