Jon Pfeiffer's Biography

Jon Pfeiffer

Santa Monica Entertainment Lawyer

Jon Pfeiffer Biography

Jon is an experienced entertainment attorney practicing in Santa Monica, California. He has successfully litigated disputes involving over 120 motion pictures and has tried over sixty-five cases to conclusion before juries, arbitrators and judges. Jon’s clients include Oscar, Emmy and Grammy winning creators, producers and performers.

Before he formed the boutique entertainment law firm of Pfeiffer Law Corp, he was the founding and managing partner of Pfeiffer & Thigpen. Prior to that, he was a partner with the international law firm of Bryan Cave LLP (now Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP) in its Santa Monica office. Jon received his B.S. degree in Business Administration from the University of Nebraska in 1980, graduating with distinction, and his J.D. degree from the University of Denver in 1983. He is licensed to practice before all of the courts of the states of Colorado, Nebraska, and California as well as the United States Supreme Court.

Over the course of his career, Jon has earned many awards and has been named among the “Super Lawyers” for entertainment every year since 2012. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. He has also given numerous speeches, written many legal articles, and been featured by notable media outlets. As his clients will agree, Jon is driven to achieve optimal results.

LinkedIn link

Community Leader

Adjunct Professor and Host of “The Creative Influencer” podcast

Jon believes strongly in community involvement. As such, he has served as chair of the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Trial Attorney Project. He has also served as the president of the Santa Monica Bar Association (SMBA) as well as chair of the SMBA’s Entertainment Law Section.

Jon is the host of “The Creative Influencer” podcast. He interviews influencers, creatives and the professionals who work with them. The podcast launched in July of 2018 and is currently in its seventh season. Over 150 episodes have been downloaded by 40,000 listeners on iTunes, Spotify and premier platforms everywhere.

Since 2006, Jon has been an adjunct professor at the Seaver College of Letters, Arts and Sciences at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California where he teaches media law. He has twice received the Outstanding Adjunct Teaching Award.

Jon has also been invited as a guest lecturer at the University of Southern California, Chapman University and Loyola Law School. He has lectured on the topic of Influencer Law for Robert V. Kozinets (Professor of Journalism; Jayne and Hans Hufschmid Chair in Strategic Public Relations and Business Communication at both the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and at the USC Marshall School of Business) for the class PR 426: Influencer Relations. Jon has lectured several times on the topic of entertainment law at the Dodge College of Film and Media Arts at Chapman University. He has also lectured on trial techniques and entertainment law at Loyola Law School.


Journey from Nebraska farm to Los Angeles entertainment lawyer

I grew up on a farm located 15 miles from Arapahoe, Nebraska, a town of 1,000 people. It took over 30 minutes to get from our farm to Arapahoe because the first eight miles of the trip were on gravel roads. The town didn’t have any stop lights and you couldn’t get take out.

I learned to drive before I started kindergarten. My dad would put our tractor, a John Deere 3020, in the lowest possible gear and tell me to drive between rows of bales in the hay field.

The tractor pulled a flatbed trailer and Dad would toss the hay bales on the trailer as I drove by.  I’d like to say that I never hit any bales with the tractor, but that wouldn’t be true. In my defense, I was 5 years old.

When I was 11 years old, I joined a 4-H club called the “Busy Beavers” (really). My second year of 4-H, I started showing steers at the Gosper County Fair in Elwood, Nebraska and then at the Nebraska State Fair in Lincoln (think Westminster Kennel Club dog show, but for cows). My calves were more than 4-H projects; they were pets.  I named my first steer Eddie after Eddie Periard, the nose guard for Nebraska’s 1970 National Championship team. Did I mention that I'm a Nebraska football fan?

My high school graduating class had less than 30 people. In case you're wondering, I did not graduate first in my class, but I was in the top half.

Law was not in my DNA but thanks to my mother, reading was. After high school I became the first person in my family to go to college. I enrolled at the University of Nebraska and became a Beta (Beta Theta Pi). My fraternity pledge class was bigger than my high school graduating class. Four years later, at graduation, Nebraska’s governor made me an admiral in Nebraska’s navy. I am proud to tell you that we’ve never lost a naval battle.

I moved to Denver for law school where I met my wife. After practicing law in Denver for two years, I took the California bar and then moved to Los Angeles.

Over the years, I’ve run four Los Angeles Marathons and three half marathons (Marine Corps Half, Los Angeles and Malibu). I ran my first half marathon with my younger son after his junior year in high school. He was a linebacker and wanted to run a marathon when he stopped playing football after his senior year.

I suggested that we run a half marathon as a warm up. At about the ten-mile mark, he started cramping and when we crossed the finish line he said, “I’m never running that far again in my life.” He hasn’t. Four years later, I ran the Marine Corps Half with my older son. We continue to run together.

My journey from the farm to Los Angeles has been loaded with challenges. Sometimes I wasn’t able to successfully meet a specific challenge but most times I was. I credit my dad’s unwavering work ethic with my ability to continue to move forward when faced with a difficult obstacle.

Sign Up for Pfeiffer Law's Monthly Newsletter

Contact Jon and his team today.