Jonathan A. Strauss

T: 612.756.7110
E: JonS@sapientialaw.com
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About

Rated by Super Lawyers

Jon has eighteen years of experience litigating product liability, commercial, privacy, construction, bid protest, employment, environmental, securities, and insurance matters.  He has tried numerous cases, although he regularly obtains dismissal for his clients through summary judgment.  As local, regional and national counsel for Fortune 500 corporations, he regularly works with litigation managers, assisting them to develop appropriate budgets for litigation.  Jon has also argued and won appeals before the Minnesota and Eighth Circuit Courts of Appeal.

Jon is a highly decorated attorney.  He has been named a “Rising Star” by Minnesota Law and Politics five times (2002, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2009), named one of ten “Up and Coming Attorneys” by Minnesota Lawyer  in 2002, and a Super Lawyer in 2015.  In 2007, Jon also won the Raeder Larson Public Service Award for outstanding service to the public through pro bono legal work.  For his pro bono efforts on behalf of individuals that had been on the I-35W bridge when it collapsed, in 2009, Jon was a recipient of the Minnesota State Bar Association’s most prestigious honor, the Professional Excellence Award, which is awarded annually to the members who have demonstrated substantial efforts to advance the legal profession and the administration of justice.

Jon’s strong belief in helping those without the means to receive adequate representation has led him to assist in several high profile pro bono matters, including freeing a death row inmate in Texas, helped several debtors through complex bankruptcy proceedings, and representing victims of the I-35W bridge collapse.

Jon is committed to improving his profession.  Throughout his entire career, he has been active in the state and county bar associations, including serving as President for the Hennepin County Bar Foundation, the charitable arm of the local county bar association.  Jon also shared his knowledge of the law as an Adjunct Professor at William Mitchell College of Law teaching a seminar regarding product liability.

Jon likes to have lots of fun. He is an avid Packer and Badger fan, and enjoys the pain that the Wisconsin teams inflict upon us here in Minnesota.  When not cheering for his teams, Jon is an avid foodie and a passionate food critic.  Finally, Jon was once a juggler and magician—performing for children’s birthday parties!  He does his best to sharpen those skills with his two young boys.

  • Representative Experience
    • Honeywell v. Lutz, Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, 2011: Successfully obtained affirmance holding that client was entitled to indemnity and insurance from subcontractor in construction matter.
    • Cleary v. Honeywell, Supreme Court of New York, 2003: Obtained summary judgment dismissal for temperature controller manufacturer in scald case.
    • Allstate Insurance Co. v. Empire Comfort Systems, Inc., State of Minnesota District Court, 2003: Successfully defended furnace manufacturer in products liability trial.
    • Siemens Transp. Systems, Inc. v. Metropolitan Council, 2001 WL 682892 (Minn. Ct. App. June 19, 2001): Fought off bid protest in trial regarding light rail vehicles in Minneapolis.
    • Reynolds v. Pennsylvania Higher Educ. Assistance Agency, 425 F.3d 526 (8th Cir. 2005), cert. denied, Educational Credit Management Corp. v. Reynolds, 127 S.Ct. 46 (2006): Won trial and two appeals resulting in discharge of debtor’s student loans. See Jonathan Strauss is Honored for Pro Bono Service. As a result of Jon’s work on this case, he was awarded the Raeder Larson Public Service Award by the Minnesota State Bar Association.
    • AEI Net Lease Income and Growth Fund XX Limited Partnership v. Anthony R. Alvarez, 2001 WL 710587 (Minn. Ct. App. June 26, 2001): Successfully argued before state appellate court in commercial landlord collections dispute.
    • Guy v. Cockrell, 343 F.3d 348 (5th Cir. 2003): Defended Texas defendant in federal habeas appeal, eventually resulting in his removal from death row.
  • Professional Recognition

    Named a Super Lawyer for 2015

    2009 recipient of the Minnesota State Bar Association’s most prestigious honor, the Professional Excellence Award, which is awarded annually to the members who have demonstrated substantial efforts to advance the legal profession and the administration of justice.

    2007 recipient of the Raeder Larson Public Service Award from the Bankruptcy Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association. This award recognizes outstanding service to the public through pro bono legal services and honors the recipient’s dedication to a system providing equal justice for all.

    “Up & Coming Attorneys” Award — One of 10 selected by Minnesota Lawyer for 2002

    Rising Star — Selected by Minnesota Law & Politics for 2002, 2003, 2007 — 2009

  • Memberships

    Hennepin County Bar Association

      • Plebicite Committee, 2012–2013
      • Board of Directors, 2003 — 2010
      • Co-Chair, Litigation Committee, 2004 — 2006
      • Chair, Finance and Planning Committee, 2007 — 2008

    Hennepin County Bar Foundation
    Board of Directors 2009 — present
    Vice President (Presidential track) 2012–2013

    Minnesota State Bar Associations
    Assembly Member, 2004 — 2008, 2010
    Legislative Committee, 2004 — 2006
    General Policy Committee, 2006 — 2008, 2010
    Speaker — Bankruptcy Section October 1999 — Student Loan Discharges

  • Civic Involvement

    Member, Jewish Community Relations Council/Domestic & Civic Affairs Commission — 2000

    Treasurer, Dan Rogan for Robbinsdale City Council, 2004 — Present

    Adjunct Professor, William Mitchell College of Law, Business Practicum 2008

    Parents Advisory Committee, Shirley G. Moore Lab School, 2009 — Present

    Mentor, College Possible, 2011 — Present


Education
JD, Northwestern University School of Law (1997)
B.A. Phi Beta Kappa, University of Wisconsin, Madison (1994)

Court Admissions
State of Minnesota, 1997
U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 1997
U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit, 1999
Supreme Court of the United States, 2006
U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, 2015

Personal
Favorite Travel Spot: Bora Bora
Favorite Sport: Baseball
Theme Song: “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead” by Warren Zevon
(Previously) Little Known Fact: Is not really a big fan of spiders
Favorite Part of Being a Lawyer: An intense oral argument
Favorite Charity or Non-profit: College Possible
Friends Describe You As: Passionate about life and loyal