Catherine Groves

Catherine J. Groves

Senior Counsel

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San Francisco

Catherine advises local government agencies on a wide variety of legal issues. Her clients include transportation districts, water districts, cities, counties, and other special districts. Catherine has particular enthusiasm for, and expertise in, the evolving legal landscape of data security and privacy laws.

Catherine’s areas of expertise within the public agency realm are expansive. She advises clients on government ethics, governance laws, legislation, constitutional issues, construction law, professional services contracts, purchase and sale of goods and real estate, intergovernmental agreements, funding and grant agreements, and technology contracts including software licensing and maintenance contracts and software as a service (SaaS). In addition, Catherine counsels clients regarding privacy policies, terms and conditions for websites and smartphone apps, compliance issues, data breach response, and privacy issues in technology agreements. Her representative matters include counseling a municipal utility district on assessing and implementing an agency-wide data security and privacy program. Catherine has also advised public transit agency clients on the procurement and launch of mobile ticketing and mobility applications.

Catherine also provides client training on the Brown Act, Public Records Act, records retention, and government ethics (AB 1234) and governance laws. Additionally, she assists clients in complying with Federal Transit Administration, Federal Highway Administration and Caltrans grant conditions, funding agreements, and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Catherine is passionate about providing pro bono assistance to various organizations and serves as a member of the firm's Pro Bono Committee.


"Amendment to the Brown Act Provides for New Website and Agenda Requirements," Government Law Alert (July 2017)

"New Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Requirement For Local Agency Officials: FAQ & Compliance Tips," co-author, Labor & Employment Law Alert (March 2017)

"California Supreme Court Case Alert: Public Records on Private Accounts," co-author, Government Law Alert (March 2017)

"Why Take 8 Steps When You Can Get There In 4? The FPPC’s New Conflict of Interest Regulations for Public Officials in California," co-author, Public Law Journal (March 2016)

"California Enacts Privacy Law for Local Agencies: SB 272, Disclosure of Enterprise Systems," co-author, Public Agency Law Alert (November 2015)

“Ask the Experts: The Brown Act,” co-author, California Special Districts Association Magazine (April 2015)

"New Public Works Requirements for Contractors and Public Agencies Pursuant to SB 854," co-author, Public Agency Law Alert (December 2014)

"New Brown Act Reporting Requirements," co-author, Public Agency Law Alert (March 2014)

"Summary of California Appellate Cases," Association of California Water Agencies, Contributing Author of Summaries (2012-2013 and 2014-2015)

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Blog Posts

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"Information Privacy LawGovernment Data Collection & Disclosure Laws,” lecturer, University of San Francisco School of Law (November 2018)

"Who Owns the Data-Mitigating Data Breach Risks in a "Smarter" World,” Transportation Research Board 57th Annual Workshop (July 2018)

“Laws Governing Sensitive Information & Tips for Advising on Common Cyber Security Issues,” American Public Transportation Association (APTA) Legal Affairs Seminar (February 2018)

"Contract Tips for Protecting Sensitive Data and Reducing the Risk of a Breach and Top 5 Things to Do in the Week After a Data Breach," co-speaker, Northern California County Counsel Meeting (June 2017)

"Government Ethics Academy," co-speaker, Santa Clara University's Markkula Center for Applied Ethics (May 2016)

"Welcome to the Fishbowl: An Interactive Government Ethics Workshop," co-speaker, 2015 CSDA Annual Conference (September 2015)

"Ask the Legal Experts," co-speaker, 2015 CSDA General managers Leadership Summit (July 2015)

"State Water Resources Control Board Emergency Regulations for Water Suppliers," co-speaker, Public Agency Roundtable Series (July 2014)

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Community Involvement

Swords to Plowshares, Pro Bono Advisory Board Member

Professional Affiliations

The Bar Association of San Francisco, Cybersecurity and Privacy Law

MMANC Women's Leadership Summit, 2014 and 2015 Planning Committee Member

Academic Distinction

Berkeley Ecology Law Quarterly, Articles Editor

Berkeley Law Board of Advocates Team

Certificate of Specialization in Environmental Law


J.D., University of California, Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law (2012)

B.A., highest departmental honors, University of California, Berkeley (2008)

Admissions And Courts


San Francisco

415-995-5171 Direct Phone
415-995-3535 Fax

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