James Kilcup is a trial and appellate attorney in Stoel Rives’ Litigation group. James’s litigation practice is focused on securities litigation, corporate governance disputes, complex business litigation, and class action defense. Clients have trusted James to represent them in all phases of high-stakes litigation, both in federal and state courts and in private arbitration and mediation.

James represents issuers and broker-dealers in investigations and disputes stemming from public market offerings. He also represents public and private companies, as well as managers and directors, against breach of fiduciary duty and shareholder oppression claims.

Beyond securities litigation, James represents a diverse range of clients, including individuals, early-stage technology startups, and Fortune 500 companies. James also represents clients in the health care and higher education sectors, as well as religious nonprofits.

Before joining Stoel Rives, James was an associate with an international law firm and served as a law clerk to Judge Alice M. Batchelder of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. During law school, James was a law clerk in the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Oregon.


The University of Chicago Law School, J.D.

Loyola Marymount University, M.A., Philosophy

Seattle University, B.A., Philosophy





  • Represented Oregon LLC in a corporate control dispute in Multnomah County Circuit Court; won temporary restraining order and order compelling the release of funds to client; case ultimately settled on favorable terms.
  • Represented Illinois-based closely held LLC in corporate control dispute in Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois; ultimately settled the dispute on favorable terms.
  • Represented FINRA-registered broker-dealer in FINRA investigation; FINRA investigation was resolved with no disciplinary action against broker-dealer.
  • Represented FINRA-registered broker-dealer against effort to name them as respondent in a FINRA arbitration based on claims against a former associated person; coordinated strategy with counsel for associated person to enjoin FINRA action in the Southern District of New York; FINRA arbitration was preliminarily enjoined, case currently pending.
  • Represented Big 10 university in the Central District of Illinois against novel Title VII class action claim seeking injunctive, declaratory, and monetary relief, with putative class consisting of thousands of employees; successfully limited the scope of class discovery; won motions to compel additional discovery; ultimately secured complete victory: class certification denied in its entirety without leave to amend; successfully opposed plaintiffs' appeal of district court's denial of class certification; successfully moved for summary judgment against individual plaintiffs.
  • Represented Big 10 university in the Illinois Court of Claims in breach of contract action brought by former professor; successfully opposed motion for summary judgment on liability; case currently pending.
  • Represented Portland-based medical system in Multnomah County Circuit Court against claims of vicarious liability and negligence, seeking compensatory and punitive damages in excess of $20 million, stemming from alleged sexual battery; case was tried to a jury but settled at the conclusion of the plaintiff's case in chief on very favorable terms.
  • Represented a Seattle-area technology start up in a minority shareholder action brought by former CFO in King County Superior Court. Reached successful resolution.
  • Represented a Pacific Northwest-based political data company in a contract and trade secret dispute before the Arbitration Service of Portland. Case currently pending in the District of Oregon.
  • Represented public agribusiness company in FINRA arbitration brought by broker-dealer. Reached successful resolution.
  • Represented Oregon-based religious nonprofit in contract, real estate, and corporate control dispute in the District of Oregon. Won summary judgment on counts related to real estate dispute and corporate control. Case otherwise remains pending.



  • Securities Regulation Section, Oregon State Bar, Executive Committee Member, 2022–2023


  • Abbey Foundation of Oregon, Governance Committee Member, 2021–2023

Practice Areas

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