"A tremendous, positive, constructive force and a talented strategist."

Ward is "an accomplished litigator...." "[a]rticulate in the courtroom", "he is commended for his courtroom skills, with clients. . . praising his ability to 'distil technical concepts into an easily understandable form.'"

Ward has "the unique ability to get inside the other parties' strategy."

"Clients 'think very highly of' Ward who is highly sought for his expertise in litigation related to antitrust and technology matters." He "is regarded as a strong presence in the marketplace."

Chambers USA


Edward D. (Ward) Johnson is a litigator who represents clients in complex commercial litigation, antitrust, intellectual property, data privacy and trade secret disputes as well as in large scale consumer class actions. He has successfully handled jury and bench trials, and argued appeals, ranging from high stakes commercial litigation to libel and criminal cases.  Ward serves on the Firm’s Partnership Board and as Managing Partner for Mayer Brown's Northern California offices.

Ward "has finely honed trial expertise as a result of his exposure to complex commercial, IP and antitrust cases.” He “’is the consummate IP professional. His strategic skills when looking at the battle landscape are exceptional, and he brings creativity and out-of-the-box thinking to the table.'" IAM 1000 (2016).   Ward “litigates patents with tactical wisdom and creativity; his storytelling abilities are on point regardless of subject matter, not least thanks to the variety of cases – commercial, antitrust and consumer class action lawsuits – he sees.”  IAM 1000 (2017).

Ward has "a great understanding of the business realities we face," and is "very good at identifying obstacles and solutions." Chambers USA 2014. "He is a very smart guy and a tough opponent." Chambers USA 2015. Described as a “strategic thinker,” he is praised for his ability to “think creatively and make outside-the-box arguments.” Chambers USA 2016.  “Commentators offer particular praise for his “stellar legal advice.’" Chambers USA 2017.

Ward regularly serves as lead counsel in complex litigation and class actions involving technology, privacy and trade secret issues. He is frequently consulted where antitrust and technology issues converge, including license programs holding essential patents relating to a technology standard and obligations to license on FRAND terms. He has served as lead counsel in dozens of patent actions.

Ward has provided antitrust advice in obtaining merger clearance from US federal, state and European regulators for major transactions in the technology, mass media, oil, pharmaceutical and retail industries.

Prior to joining Mayer Brown, Ward served as Deputy Solicitor General of New York State; and as Law Clerk to the Honorable John D. Butzner, Jr., US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Spoken Languages

  • English


  • Represented a major audio technology client in antitrust, patent misuse and other related litigation concerning the Blu-ray technology standard (ND Cal, Los Angeles Superior Court and arbitration).
  • Won several post-eBay injunctions against infringers of clients’ patents as well as summary judgments finding infringement of clients’ patents and a finding of willful infringement and alter-ego liability against the owner of an infringing corporation. (CD Cal)
  • $14 million-plus verdict (after a six-week jury trial) for client Philips Semiconductors against supplier of defective plastic molding compound (Santa Clara County Superior Court).
  • Favorable settlement of securities class action against telecommunications company client Universal Access after trial court dismissed the majority of plaintiffs’ fraud claims (ED Tex).
  • Dismissal of client VeriFone from International Trade Commission’s Section 337 investigation against leading manufacturers of point-of-sale devices and representation of VeriFone in related patent-infringement litigation (ITC and ND Cal).
  • Favorable settlement of client Philips Electronics’ civil RICO and patent royalty claims against world’s largest distributor of DVD players (CD Cal).
  • Representation of Morgan Crucible in antitrust and unfair competition class action against the major manufacturers of electrical carbon products (San Francisco Superior Court).


Yale Law School, JD
Editor, Yale Law & Policy Review

University of Virginia, BA, with highest distinction
Robert K. Gooch Scholar


  • California
  • New York


  • US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • US District Court for the Central District of California
  • US District Court for the Eastern District of California
  • US District Court for the Northern District of California
  • US District Court for the Southern District of California
  • US District Court for the Eastern District of New York
  • US District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas