David M. Pickett


  • location icon Sacramento, CA
    2020 West El Camino Avenue
    Suite 700
    Sacramento, CA 95833

David Pickett is a partner in the Sacramento office of Lewis Brisbois and a member of the firm's Transportation Practice. He has extensive experience representing railroad and transit clients in regulatory, transactional, and litigation matters.

David came to Lewis Brisbois after serving for more than 14 years as in-house counsel for Union Pacific Railroad in Roseville, California, where he had regional responsibilities for a wide range of legal work. Among other initiatives, while at Union Pacific, David negotiated and drafted agreements related to major rail capacity and infrastructure projects, commuter rail operations, railroad joint facilities, and public-private partnerships. He also served as Union Pacific’s lead counsel with respect to the multi-billion dollar California high-speed rail initiative.

David has extensive regulatory and compliance experience, having successfully represented clients before multiple state rail regulatory agencies in rulemakings, litigated administrative matters, and dispute resolution processes.

David has a litigation background, including first-chair trial experience in Federal Employers’ Liability Act litigation, that guides his other legal work and helps him counsel clients about risk management.

Prior to his work at Union Pacific, David practiced as in-house counsel for the Sacramento Regional Transit District. He also worked as an associate at a San Francisco firm.

David is an Eagle Scout and has held several volunteer positions with the Boy Scouts of America. Since 2012, he has served as the Scoutmaster of a large and active troop. He enjoys the chance to work with youth in his community and to help them grow in character and experience through the Scouting program.

Published Opinions

  • Woods v. Union Pacific Railroad Co., 162 Cal.App.4th 571 (Cal. App. 2d Dist., 2008)


  • State Bar Admissions
    • California
  • United States District Courts
    • United States District Court for the Central District of California
    • United States District Court for the Eastern District of California
  • United States Courts of Appeals
    • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit



U.S. District Court, Central District of California

U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California

9th Circuit Court of Appeals


  • National Association of Railroad Trial Counsel
  • Conference of California Public Utility Counsel


Salt Lake Community College

Certificate of Study in Railroad Operations, 2000

University of Southern California

Juris Doctor, 1999

University of Utah

Bachelor of Science, 1995

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