Dawn S. Theodora

Dawn S. Theodora joined the California State University Office of General Counsel in 2001 and is University Counsel for California State University, Monterey Bay. She has also served as campus counsel to the East Bay, San Luis Obispo and San Marcos campuses. Dawn is the Assistant Vice Chancellor & Chief Counsel, Business and Finance, and is assigned the specialty subject matters of CEQA and Protecting the CSU Name. She previously served on the Office of General Counsel's Academic/Student Affairs team, Human Resources team, as well as the Litigation team (responsible for litigating a variety of systemwide and campus-based matters in state and federal courts). Prior to joining the Office of General Counsel, Dawn practiced law with Keesal, Young & Logan, where she specialized in malpractice defense, securities, maritime, employment, products liability, and insurance coverage litigation.


  • J.D., University of San Diego (1987) CEQA
  • B.A., History, University of California, Irvine (1984)

Legal Organizations and Activities:

  • National Association of College and University Attorneys
  • Committee on Membership and Member Services (2007-11)
  • Sub-Committee on Policy and Procedures (2009-11)
  • Sub-Committee on New Members (2007-09)
  • Annual Program Committee on Litigation (2004)
  • Creating a Culture of Risk Management (2004), Moderator, Annual Conference

Publications and Speaking Engagements:

  • “Information Security Breaches" (2014), CSU Information Security Officers Conference
  • “Risk Mitigation and the Use of Waivers" (2014), Auxiliary Organizations Association Annual Conference
  • “What Every CSU Title IX Coordinator Must Know" (2012), CSU Title IX Training Series
  • “Title IX and Athletics" (2012), CSU Title IX Training Series
  • “Access to Auxiliary Records and The McKee Act" (2011), National Public Radio Sacramento (live point/counterpoint discussion with Senator Leland Yee)
  • “Title IX and Employment Litigation Update: Emerging from the Rabbit Hole" (2011), National Association of College and University Attorneys, Spring CLE Employment Workshop
  • “Litigation and Crisis Communications" (2010), CSU Systemwide Public Affairs Annual Conference
  • “Current Litigation Trends and Issues" (2010), Western Association of College and University Business Officers
  • “Title IX: A New Frontier in Employment Litigation" (2009), National Association of College and University Attorneys, Spring CLE Employment Workshop
  • “CSU Super Sunday" (2009), Speaker, Grant AME Church, Los Angeles, California
  • “Title IX and Athletics Litigation" (2008), California Collegiate Athletic Association
  • “Title IX - Athletics, Litigation, and Lessons Learned" (2008), CSU Athletics Directors Annual Conference
  • “Public Records Access" (2006), Auxiliary Organizations Association

Other Activities, Interests or Publications:

  • 2013 Power of Attorneys Finalist, The Daily Transcript, San Diego, California
  • Moot Court Judge, University of California, Irvine (2009)
  • Moot Court Judge, University of San Diego School of Law (2005-08)
  • Attorney Mentor, Newport Harbor High School Professional Mentor Program (2004-08)

Phone: (562) 951-4315
Fax: (562) 951-4956

Support Staff:
Elizabeth Horta