O’Melveny Worldwide

Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles: Seth Aronson Receives the Maynard Toll Award for Distinguished Public Service

November 17, 2021

O’Melveny partner Seth Aronson was honored by the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, the oldest and largest legal aid organization in California, with the Maynard Toll Award for Distinguished Public Service during LAFLA’s 2021 Access to Justice virtual gala on November 16.

The award honors members of the bar whose exemplary record of public service and commitment to legal services for the poor are in the best traditions of the legal profession, and is named in honor of its first recipient, esteemed O’Melveny partner Maynard J. Toll. A major figure in establishing federally funded legal services programs for the poor, Toll became known as the “Father of Legal Aid” in the US. Upon his passing in 1988, the Los Angeles Times published an obituary detailing his contributions to the profession and to the public good.

Aronson is a longtime supporter of LAFLA, serving as President (1998-99) and board member (1993-99). He was instrumental in raising funds for the creation of LAFLA’s Ron Olson Justice Center. Seth is actively involved in various pro bono cases, including a successful Eighth Circuit appeal on behalf of a plaintiff’s civil rights attorney in the Kansas City School desegregation cases. He is currently representing an individual in an immigration appeal in the Ninth Circuit.

Aronson’s contributions to the legal and business communities include serving on the boards of Loyola Law School, UCLA School of Public Affairs, Ninth Circuit Historical Society, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce and Association of Business Trial Lawyers (including serving as President).

From the trial court to the court of appeals to the US Supreme Court, many of the world’s leading companies in a variety of industries call on Aronson to handle their most complex litigation. His litigation practice includes defending corporations and their directors and officers in securities class actions, shareholder derivative actions, SEC enforcement proceedings, RICO litigation, and mergers and acquisitions litigation. In 2018, Aronson argued and won a US Supreme Court victory in a much-watched securities litigation case, obtaining a unanimous Court decision that significantly narrows the tolling provisions established decades ago in the Court’s landmark American Pipe decision. This victory will have a wide-ranging impact on securities litigation and on class actions generally, and Benchmark Litigation recently named it a National Impact Case. China Agritech v. Resh, 2018 WL 2767565 (decided June 11, 2018).

Aronson is nationally recognized in his field and was named California Securities Litigation Attorney of the Year by Benchmark Litigation California in two consecutive years (2019, 2020) and a “Top 100 Lawyer” by Daily Journal. He has the singular distinction of being named the Los Angeles “Lawyer of the Year” in 2013 and 2018 in the category of Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy). Seth has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America in four categories: Bet-the-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, Litigation and Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy). He has been ranked as a leading lawyer by Chambers USA in every edition since it was first published.