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Ronald L. M. Goldman

Ronald L. M. Goldman retired after 60 years in the practice of law on January 10, 2023. He held the positions of vice president and senior trial attorney at Baum Hedlund & Aristei & Goldman (now Wisner Baum) and was a pillar of Baum Hedlund for 19 years. We marked his retirement with this special commemorative article.

Ron was a skilled trial lawyer and board-certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy as a Civil Pretrial Practice Advocate and Civil Trial Advocate, Senior Specialist. For 18 years, Ron served as a senior shareholder, board member, vice-president, secretary and senior trial counsel for Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman. He transitioned to “of counsel” status in July 2022. Ron handled a wide variety of sophisticated litigation at both the trial and appellate levels, and litigated hundreds of cases involving personal injury and wrongful death related to commercial transportation liability and drug product liability.

Ronald F. Phillips
Vice Chancellor & School of Law Dean Emeritus
Pepperdine University

Featured in Southern California Super Lawyers- Commemorating Ron's 50 Years of Lawyering

He successfully led our firm’s transportation department, litigating and overseeing hundreds of cases stemming from aviation disasters and commercial ground transportation accidents. Ron taught for 21 years at Pepperdine School of Law as an adjunct Law Professor, where he created and taught the course on Aviation Accident Law. He also taught courses in Torts, Insurance Law, Legal Writing, and Analysis.

Ronald L. M. Goldman Pilot, Attorney of Counsel, Retired

Locally & Nationally Recognized

In 1969 Ron handled his first aviation case and has continued handling aviation cases ever since, in accidents such as the 1972 British European Airways crash near London; the 1978 Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 182/Cessna 172 Midair Collision at San Diego, California; the 1986 Aero Mexico Flight 498/Piper Midair Collision at Cerritos, California; and the 2000 Southwest Airlines runway accident at Burbank, California. He also handled the September 11, 2001 aviation (passenger) tort litigation in which he also served on the Plaintiffs’ Executive Committee. Since joining the firm in 2003 he has worked on all of the firm’s general aviation and airline disaster cases.

He was the lead negotiator in one of the firm’s most significant aviation litigation achievements. He won, as part of the settlement in the January 8, 2003, Air Midwest Flight 5481 crash in Charlotte, NC, the agreement of the airline and maintenance company, in an organized ceremony, to deliver an unprecedented official public apology to the families for the crash. Three years later Ron appeared in a dramatic reenactment of the crash, its subsequent investigation, and the ultimate public apology, which aired on National Geographic Television.

Ron’s expertise extends far beyond aviation into many forms of commercial transportation accidents. Due to his experience with train accident cases, he was chosen as a member of the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee for the 2008 Chatsworth Metrolink train collision in California, which is the deadliest train accident in Metrolink’s history. He also litigated the fatal 2012 Coal Train Derailment in Ellicott City, Maryland.

Ron was involved in ground-breaking pharmaceutical litigation which helped pave the way for the drug product liability litigation lawyers are facing today. In the 1960s he was actively involved in exposing Richardson-Merrell’s (later known as Marion Merrell Dow) cholesterol-lowering drug, MER/29 (triparanol), which was blamed for severe side effects and birth defects. The company was ultimately indicted for supplying the FDA with falsified information about the drug.

While at our firm, Ron maintained an AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review lawyer rating through Martindale Hubbell and was listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers, and The Best Lawyers in America® 2013-2022 (Copyright by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC). He was also published in Million Dollar Verdicts by the Masters and was listed in Southern California Super Lawyers® from 2005 to 2022. As lead trial counsel, Ron won one of the largest verdicts of its type in Ohio’s history in December of 2006. The case concerned an unmarried person who died in a Tyson Foods truck crash. The case, Brumfield v. Tyson Foods, Inc., N.D. Ohio Case No. 1:05CV847, before Judge Donald C. Nugent, resulted in a jury verdict of $7,028,687.

Ron Goldman has appeared in the media more than 2,000 times concerning aviation accidents and pharmaceutical drug product liability, including safety oversight issues. Numerous media have sought Ron’s expert opinion as a pilot and former adjunct aviation accident law professor concerning airline accidents in the U.S. and abroad as well as regarding runway incursions at LAX.

He has made numerous TV, radio, and other media appearances as a legal expert for some of the world’s leading news agencies, including Good Morning America, NBC Nightly News, ABC World News Tonight, CNN, Bloomberg News, Chicago Tribune,, Fox News Channel, The Guardian, Los Angeles Times, MSNBC, National Law Journal, NPR, Associated Press and the Washington Post.

Ron received his B.S.L. in 1960 and his law degree in 1962, both from the University of Southern California.


  • University of Southern California (B.S.L., 1960)
  • University of Southern California (J.D., 1962)
  • Private Pilot License, USA (1980)

Court Admissions

  • California, 1963
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of California, 1963
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit, 1970
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1971
  • United Kingdom, Court of Inquiry, 1972 (Investigating crash of British European Airways Trident jet in June 1972, London, England)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1985
  • United States Court of Federal Claims, 1974
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, 1975
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, 1977
  • District of Columbia, 1979
  • The District of Columbia Court of Appeals, 1979
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit, 1982
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, 1983
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 2006
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California, 2006
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 2006
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois, 2008
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit, 2008
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of New York, 2009
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, 2009
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, 2012
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of California, 2022

Board Certified

Awards and Honors

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