Richard Arthur McDonald, Esq.

Richard Arthur McDonald, Esq.: Attorney with Carlson & Nicholas, LLP


For the past 28 years, Richard has practiced land-use, real estate, environmental and administrative law in representing property owners, developers, and neighborhood associations in the entitlement of numerous projects in the San Gabriel Valley and throughout Southern California. Richard has worked on the restoration of the Constance Hotel and the YWCA Julia Morgan Building, the development of the Parsons Campus, the Colorado at Hill hotels, the Marriott Residence Inn, the Paseo Colorado, and the Crown City Medical Building in Pasadena. He has also been involved in several other hotel, medical office, and multi-family residential projects in Southern California, handling all of the CEQA, planning and zoning and other entitlements required by state, county, and city governments. In addition, Richard has successfully appeared as lead trial and appellate counsel in traditional and administrative writ of mandamus proceedings, and in complex class actions, private attorney general, commercial, real estate, insurance, and environmental litigation and binding arbitrations throughout the United States. Richard currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Pasadena Center Operating Company and is the Chairman of its Governance Committee. He also serves on the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce Legislative Affairs Committee. Previously, he served as the Vice-Chairman of the City of Pasadena's 2011 City Council Redistricting Task Force, and on the Board of Directors for the South Lake Avenue Business District and the West Pasadena Residents' Association. From 2003 to 2010, he served on the City of Pasadena's Planning Commission, including as Chairman and Vice-Chairman, and on the City's Board of Zoning Appeals, including as Chairman and Vice-Chairman. He served on the Pasadena Transportation Advisory Commission from 2000 - 2003, and the 2001 City Council Redistricting Task Force. Richard is a member of Annandale Golf Club and The Twilight Club. Richard earned his law degree from Loyola Law School in 1986, where he externed for Justice Kaus of the California Supreme Court, as well as was a member of the St. Thomas More Law Honor Society, Scott Moot Court Honors Board and 1985 Best Oralist in Moot Court Competition. Richard also has a Master's in Public Administration from U.S.C., and his B.A. from U.C. Berkeley.

Areas of Practice (9)

  • Land Use and Development
  • Zoning
  • Real Estate
  • Environmental Law
  • Commercial Law
  • Appellate Practice
  • Real Estate Litigation
  • Complex Litigation
  • Class Actions

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
(626) 356-4801  Phone
(626) 487-6713  Cell Phone
(626) 356-4801  Fax
Year of First Admission:
1986, California; 1991, U.S. Supreme Court; 1986, U.S. District Court, Northern, Eastern, Central and Southern Districts of California and U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
Pasadena and Los Angeles County Bar Associations; State Bar of California.
Birth Information:
San Jose, California, June 24, 1958
Reported Cases:
Harper v. 24 Hour Fitness (2008 DJDAR 16053, October 22, 2008); Mount Olympus Property Owners Ass'n, Inc. v. Shpirt, 59 Cal. App. 4th 885 (1997); Re-Open Rambla, Inc. v. County of Los Angeles, 39 Cal. App. 4th 1499 (1995); Cole v. Sea Ray Boats, Inc., 32 Cal. Reporter 2d.431 (1994) (de-published).

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Pasadena, California

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