Stephanie Holmberg

Industry Group Leader

How I represent clients at Schwabe

As leader of Schwabe’s Real Estate and Construction industry group and as a Shareholder in our Litigation Department, I help owners, developers, contractors, and design professionals resolve disputes at the administrative level, in arbitration, and in court. I also guide clients through the public works bidding process and regularly assists with bid protests. Drafting and negotiating contracts is another area of focus, including frequent presentations on these topics to industry groups, bar associations, and clients.

Legal advice with an in-house perspective

I am former in-house counsel to a national electrical utility contractor with experience in all aspects of project development and claims resolution. This experience makes me a more effective advocate because I understand and appreciate our clients’ business priorities and the value I bring to every matter.


Litigation and Dispute Resolution

  • Obtained arbitration award on behalf of general contractor on payment claim against project owner and successfully defended against counterclaim for liquidated damages.
  • Settled payment dispute between civil contractor and City of Portland involving issues of defect and delay.
  • Obtained a unanimous jury verdict on a six-figure bond claim relating to work performed on a public works construction project on behalf of a specialty subcontractor.
  • Represented a local architecture firm in a payment dispute against a homeowner, including defense against counterclaims and third-party claims.
  • Successfully resolved a six-figure payment claim on behalf of a local specialty subcontractor.
  • Assisted a local architecture firm in pursuing a seven-figure payment claim.
  • Represented a real estate developer in defending against a payment claim by a design professional and pursuing associated counterclaims.
  • Defended a national electrical utility contractor in complex construction litigation involving claims for breach of contract and delay.
  • Represented a local homebuilder in a breach of contract claim against a homeowner for nonpayment. Assisted in negotiating a favorable settlement.
  • Successfully appealed issuance of occupational safety and health citations based on serious injury incidents on behalf of a national electrical utility contractor.
  • Successfully negotiated resolution of several cases involving civil rights claims in Oregon federal court.
  • Defended national railroad companies in employee actions under Federal Employers Liability Act and Locomotive Inspection Act. Obtained favorable settlements in every instance.

Contract Drafting and Negotiation

  • Draft and negotiate contracts between owners and design professionals (architects and engineers), including but not limited to AIA contracts.
  • Review and revise remodeling contracts for commercial and residential property owners and contractors.
  • Draft and negotiate prime contracts, subcontracts and purchase orders for owners, general contractors and subcontractors, including but not limited to AIA and ConsensusDocs documents.
  • Assisted project owner in preparing design and construction contracts for use in large-scale capital improvement project.
  • Assisted a national energy supply company in developing delivery project methods and drafting associated construction contracts for several projects in the Northwest region.


  • Lewis & Clark, Law School, Juris Doctor
  • Vanderbilt University, Bachelor of Arts


  • Oregon State Courts
  • Washington State Courts
  • U.S. District Court - District of Oregon


  • Oregon State Bar, Construction Section, Executive Committee, Member
  • American Bar Association, Construction Industry Forum, Member
  • Association of Corporate Counsel, Member (2012-2014)
  • Associated General Contractors, Oregon-Columbia Chapter, Professional and Industry Associates Council, Member
  • Defense Research Institute (DRI); Construction Law and Women in the Law committees
  • Multnomah Bar Association, Member
  • National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), Portland Chapter, Member; Board of Directors (2016-2018)


  • Oregon DJC’s Women of Vision (2017)

Additional Publications

“The Pitfalls of a Poorly Drafted Lien Release”
Oregon State Bar, Construction Law Section, Construction Law Newsletter
June 2018

Additional Events

  • Co-Presenter, “Building Your Construction Project: Critical Concepts and Issues, Owner-Architect Relationships,” Oregon State Bar, Construction Section, October 2021
  • Participant, “Pacific NW Predictions: Retail Real Estate Reimagined,” September 2021
  • Moderator, “Opportunities and Obstacles: How a New Administration Might Impact the Pacific NW A|E|C Industries,” DJC Oregon, April 2021
  • Co-Presenter, Oregon Corporate Activity Tax (CAT), Independent Electrical Contractors of Oregon (IEC), February 2020
  • Co-Presenter, “Successful Claims Management,” Oregon Society of CPAs, May 2019
  • Co-Presenter, “Specialty Contractors Council Success EDU Session – Help! I Think I Need a Lawyer!,” Associated General Contractors of Oregon, April 2019
  • Co-Presenter, “Legal Panel – Construction Claims and Disputes,” National Association of Women in Construction, Portland Chapter, February 2019
  • Co-Presenter, “Change Order Basics,” Lorman Education Services Webinar, January 2019
  • Presenter, “DJC Oregon Builder Breakfast Series: Where to Hedge Your Bets in 2019,” November 2018
  • Co-Presenter, “Prime Contractors and Subcontractors: Friends or Foes?,” Oregon State Bar – Construction Section CLE, October 2018
  • Presenter, “Dealing with Construction Sureties and Pursuing Bond Claims,” The Seminar Group: Oregon Construction Law, September 2018
  • Co-Presenter, “Specialty Contractors Council Success EDU Session – Safety Culture: The Care and Feeding of Your Dinosaur,” Associated General Contractors of Oregon, June 2018
  • Co-Presenter, “Appellate Law Update,” Oregon Association of Defense Counsel, June 2018
  • Co-Presenter, “Architect and Contractor: Friend or Foe?” American Institute of Architects, March 2018
  • Co-Presenter, “Key Provisions in Washington and Oregon Construction Contracts,” National Association of Women in Construction, Portland Chapter, May 2017
  • Co-Presenter, “Deconstructing Construction Contracts,” HalfMoon Education Inc.: Construction Contract Workshop, October 2016
  • Co-Presenter, “The More Things Change…The Latest Case Law and Statutory Developments,” The Seminar Group: Oregon Construction Law, September 2016


Community Activities

  • Oregon Law Center, Volunteer Attorney
  • Oregon Health and Science University, Center for Women’s Health, Circle of Giving
  • Pittock Mansion Society – Board of Directors

Outside Interests

When I am not in the office or working with clients or teaming with colleagues, you’ll find me spending time with my husband and young children, hiking locally, trying new recipes, and playing with our dog, Ranger.

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