Caleb R. Trotter

Attorney Sacramento

Caleb Trotter joined Pacific Legal Foundation in September 2015. Caleb primarily litigates cases involving economic liberty, the First Amendment, and equality under the law.

After growing up in Oklahoma, Caleb moved to New Orleans to attend college at Tulane University. Roll Wave! After witnessing government screw-ups at every level following Hurricane Katrina, Caleb began seriously questioning big government. The laissez faire culture of New Orleans also began to affect Caleb’s views on individualism, and after being introduced to the liberty movement by Reason Magazine, Caleb began to realize that a career in banking was no longer for him. So in 2012, Caleb decided to run for Congress and go to law school so he could advocate and fight for liberty.

Caleb attended law school at Loyola University New Orleans, where he graduated cum laude, served as a member of the Loyola Law Review and moot court program, and was a Federalist Society chapter officer. While in law school, Caleb externed at the Jefferson Parish, Louisiana public defender’s office, and clerked at the Institute for Justice. Those experiences confirmed for Caleb that defending individual liberty through public interest law was the path for him, and working at PLF enables him to do just that.

When he’s not directly fighting for liberty, Caleb can usually be found watching Texas Rangers baseball, performing improv, traveling, or tramping around the wilderness with a camera. Caleb is also an Eagle Scout, and once was nearly clobbered by a golf ball hit by Tiger Woods during the 2001 U.S. Open.

Lawsuits filed to preserve swordfish industry and livelihoods Abad, et al. v. Bonham, et al. and Williams, et al. v. Ross, et al.

Governments’ misguided battle threatens California fishermen and their way of life.

Swordfish is a very popular seafood and one of the most abundant types of fish on the West Coast. It is also a primary source of income and way of life for many California families. But recent legal changes at the state and federal levels threaten to wipe out longtime family-owned businesses as well as the entire domestic swordfish supply. The new ...

American Society of Journalists and Authors v. Becerra

California’s freelancer law destroys journalists’ freedom, autonomy

In an effort to regulate the employment status of independent contractors, California passed a law forcing companies in the state to reclassify most freelancers as employees. Under AB 5, freelance journalists and photographers must cap their submissions at 35 per year, per publisher. Anything greater, and they become employees, losing their profess ...

Debbie Pulley v. Janice Izlar, President of the Georgia Board of Nursing

Georgia midwife sues to continue speaking truthfully about her profession

Debbie Pulley has been a Certified Professional Midwife in Georgia for 24 years, both working as a midwife and advocating for midwives. The state’s rules changed in 2015, allowing only licensed nurses to practice midwifery in Georgia. So Debbie turned her efforts to reforming Georgia’s laws and advocating for access to midwifery care. B ...

Constitutional Rights of American Indian Peggy Fontenot v. Eric Schmitt, Attorney General of Missouri

American Indian artist seeks to truthfully market her art

Peggy is a member of the Virginia-recognized Patawomeck Indian tribe through her mother’s line and is certified as an artisan by the federally recognized Citizen Potawatomi Nation through her father’s line. In addition to her numerous awards, she has shown and sold her art in museums and galleries throughout the United States, including ...

D.M. & Z.G. v. Minnesota State High School League

Discrimination dance: “Girls only” school dance team is unconstitutional

When 16-year-old Dmitri Moua discovered dancing, he found a new way to be a part of a team and build his self-confidence. But when he wanted to join his high school’s competitive dance team, he was denied because he is a boy. Dmitri’s school is in the Minnesota State High School League—whose bylaws declare competitive dance a “g ...

Kansas Natural Resource Coalition v. Department of Interior

Bad rulemaking threatens good conservation

A buffalo rancher by trade, Ken Klemm also uses his 4,000-acre ranch in Kansas for conservation efforts. In fact, Klemm works with the Kansas Natural Resource Coalition (KNRC) to implement a conservation plan for the lesser prairie chicken. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service considers such local collaboration for determining endangered listings und ...

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August 20, 2019

States can’t prevent American Indian artists from truthfully marketing their art

This March, Peggy Fontenot, an award-winning artist and member of the Patawomeck Tribe, vindicated her right to truthfully market her art as "American Indian-made" in Oklahoma. The Patawomeck Tribe is recognized by Virginia as an American Indian tribe. But because the Patawomeck Tribe is not recognized by the federal government, Oklahoma barred Peg ...

August 09, 2019

Albuquerque Journal: Indian Market’s exclusions are a pity

American Indian artist Peggy Fontenot, a member of the Patawomeck tribe, makes a living by selling her black-and-white photography and intricate beadwork at American Indian art markets across the country. A devotee of traditional techniques, she has received multiple awards at leading markets like the Autry Museum of the American West in Los Angele ...

June 14, 2019

A dad’s Fathers Day gift: fighting for his son’s rights

Joel Greenwald can't dance. If you ask him, he'll say that he has "three left feet." His son Zachary, however, loves to dance. Zach loves dancing so much that in seventh grade after he was told competitive school dance teams are only for girls, he kept dancing with a private studio. Meander through the Father's ...

March 29, 2019

Victory in Oklahoma

Nearly three years ago, Peggy Fontenot learned that the Oklahoma legislature was considering a bill that would redefine who an American Indian artist is. If the bill were to pass, only those who are members of federally recognized tribes would be able to market their art in Oklahoma as American Indian-made. This was a big ...

March 22, 2019

Can the government decline to register “scandalous” trademarks?

Erik Brunetti is a designer and artist, and since 1990 has owned a clothing brand called "fuct." Mr. Brunetti's brand was founded as, and remains, a provocative streetwear brand known for its anti-establishment celebration of freedom of expression. While it is a homonym for a common curse word," "fuct" has also come to be an ...

March 06, 2019

Victory goes to the dancers

Earlier today, the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of PLF clients Dmitri Moua and Zachary Greenwald, reversing the district court's denial of their motion for a preliminary injunction to stop the Minnesota State High School League from banning boys from participating in competitive dance. Agreeing with PLF, the 8th Circuit held that ...

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