Robert Crowder Tressler LLP

Crowder, Robert S. Partner

Crowder, Robert S. Partner

Practice Focus

Robert Crowder is a partner in the Litigation practice. He represents clients in a variety of commercial and business litigation involving maritime, admiralty, transportation, environmental, energy and insurance matters. He has extensive experience in all aspects of litigation, through and including trial and appeals, and with alternative dispute resolution in its various forms. He strives to creatively resolve matters at inception when possible and to explore opportunities to expeditiously resolve issues.

Robert has worked on cases dealing with contractor injuries arising in refinery, oil production unit and other heavy industrial settings. He also has experience with toxic-tort and toxic-brain injury claims, California Proposition 65 litigation, environmental compliance counseling, cargo damage claims, products liability claims, and breach of contract claims involving oil terminals and contracts of carriage.

Professional Background

Robert has significant professional and practical experience in the marine and energy fields. He sailed as a deck officer for six years in the merchant marine on oceangoing tankers and subsequently worked “shore-side” in the maritime industry. He maintains a professional merchant mariner’s license issued by the United States Coast Guard as master of freight and towing vessels and chief mate of oceangoing vessels, unlimited tonnage.

Previously, Robert worked at Exxon’s refinery in Benicia, Calif., where he held a variety of positions, including roles in coordination and economics, engineering support and operations. He attended numerous training courses in various aspects of refinery operations, economics and management. During law school, Robert worked as a law clerk for Exxon and also as a consultant overseeing third-party vessel cargo-handling operations for SeaRiver Maritime, Inc.

Memberships & Affiliations

  • The Propeller Club of Los Angeles and Long Beach, Board Member
  • Environmental Forensics, Editorial Board
  • The Maritime Law Association of the United States, Proctor Member
  • American Chemical Society, Member
  • Claims & Litigation Management Alliance, Member



Representative Experience

  • Lead trial counsel in successful defense of multi-million dollar Long Beach Harbor oil spill pollution case
  • Defended construction defect litigation involving complex process systems
  • Counseled clients in international breach of contract, construction defect and product liability cases
  • Represented insurers and manufacturers in aircraft casualty cases


  • “Overview of Maritime Law Sources, Jurisdictional Choices, and Litigation in the US Courts,” Chapter in Understanding Maritime Law: Leading Lawyers on Navigating the Rules of Oceanic Trade and Recreation (Inside the Minds), September 2015 by Thomson Reuters/Aspatore
  • "Trying the Maritime Case in the United States", presented at October 2014 BIT World Congress of Ocean in Dalian, China
  • "Use of Forensic Fingerprinting Techniques to Identify Sources of ‘Mystery’ Oil Spills", presented at October 2014 BIT World Congress of Ocean in Dalian, China
  • "California Fair Claims Practices Regulations", presented in London, England June 9, 2016
  • "Use of Fingerprinting Techniques to Identify ‘Mystery’ Oil Spills and Determine Contamination Claim Validity", presented at March 2017 AEHS International Conference on Soil, Water, Energy & Air in San Diego, California
  • "California Fair Claims Practices Regulations", presented via Webinar to London Market Claims Adjusters July 13 and 17, 2017

Community Involvement

  • Chair – Education/Scholarship Committee, Propeller Club of LA/LB