Education

  • Northwestern School of Law
  • Lewis and Clark College, J.D.
  • Portland State University, B.S.

Leslie Johnson joined Samuels Yoelin Kantor LLP as Of Counsel in May 2017. Prior to that, she was in private practice elsewhere in downtown Portland.  In more than 25 years of practice, her focus has always been on complex business disputes and business law. She has earned expertise dealing with forensic and damages experts and voluminous, complicated discovery and analysis, beginning with boxes of paper but now calling for a working knowledge of digital analytics and AI.  Her practice has extended to wide range of businesses and  disputes, with emphases on contract issues, corporate governance, shareholder agreements and disputes, employment law, business and real property transactions, franchise disputes, securities, and lawyer and accountant malpractice.  While many disputes can be resolved by direct negotiation, mediation or private arbitration, she also appears regularly in the state and federal courts of both Oregon and Washington, and is available for local counsel and conflicts counsel engagements.    Her practice has included service to business clients in other jurisdictions, as well, including pro hac vice admissions in Utah, Colorado, California, and the Delaware Court of Chancery and US District Court there (so far).  In addition, she serves as an arbitrator with the Multnomah County Circuit Court arbitrations program.

Leslie is a life-long Oregonian. She obtained her undergraduate degree at Portland State University (B.S., 1991) and her law degree at the Northwestern School of Law at Lewis & Clark College (J.D., 1995). She is a current member in the Oregon and Washington State Bar Associations, the Multnomah (Oregon) and Clark County (Washington) Bar Associations, and the American Bar Association.  She currently serves in both the OSB and ABA House of Delegates.  She has served on a number of bar committees and task forces, wanting to stay engaged with current law updates and help to shape her state laws.

She was honored by her law school in 2005 with the Joyce Ann Harpole Award, given to a graduate who exemplifies a high standard of professionalism. She holds the highest rating (‘AV’) from publisher Martindale Hubbell. In 2014, she made the list of Oregon Super Lawyers for her business litigation work. Johnson has spoken at local and state bar association CLEs on practical litigation skills. She co-authored chapters of the Oregon State Bar publications INSURANCE (chapter 2, ‘Understanding and Interpreting Policy Language,’ 1996 revision and 1999 supplement); FEDERAL CIVIL LITIGATION (chapter 16, ‘Depositions,’ 1998 supplement); CIVIL PLEADING AND PRACTICE (chapter 25, ‘Depositions,’ 1998 supplement); an outline of Clark County [Washington] Practice and Procedure presented as a Multnomah Bar Association CLE in 2000, 2002 and 2003; and, most recently, two chapters of OREGON CIVIL PLEADING AND LITIGATION (2020 ed.).

Outside of her practice, Leslie enjoys a range of civic activities. These include a long and active membership in the City Club of Portland, as well as service on the advisory council for Profile Theatre Project and board. Leslie is also involved with activities in Portland’s neighborhood associations, volunteering and raising awareness.

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association
  • American Bar Foundation
  • Oregon State Bar Association
  • Washington State Bar Association
  • Multnomah County Bar Association
  • Clark County Bar Association

Select Honors & Achievements

  • City Club of Portland Lifetime Achievement Award, 2019
    • “This award is reserved for someone who has given long-standing service, more than ten years, to City Club and the wider community, who shows continued willingness over that tenure to assume significant responsibilities, and who demonstrates a long-lasting interest in the goals of City Club… Over the last year, Leslie has stayed engaged, supporting our gala in a huge way, producing a fantastic Friday Forum off the cuff, and by lending her legal acumen and institutional knowledge to our ongoing work. More than that, Leslie has continued to model the best of City Club, working across difference and disagreement for the best of the City.”
  • Selected for inclusion in Oregon Super Lawyers (2014 – 2020)
  • Selected for Inclusion in Best Lawyers in America©
    • Commercial Litigation (2013 -2020)
  • Joyce Ann Harpole Award, 2005



Community & Charity Involvement

  • Profile Theatre Project, Advisory Council
  • City Club of Portland
  • Goose Hollow Foothills League, Board

Speaking Engagements & Publications

  • Author, Oregon Civil Pleading and Litigation, 2020 Edition
  • Co-authored chapters of Oregon State Bar publications
    • INSURANCE (chapter 2, “Understanding and Interpreting Policy Language,” 1996 revision and 1999 supplement)
    • FEDERAL CIVIL LITIGATION (chapter 16, “Depositions,” 1998 supplement)
    • CIVIL PLEADING AND PRACTICE (chapter 25, “Depositions,” 1998 supplement)