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Sean Southard is a seasoned leasing specialist whose ability to forge strong relationships throughout the real estate industry is matched only by his ability to process and apply market data about deal structures and terms to get the best result possible for his clients.  He works quickly and efficiently, making him a master of high-velocity deals.  His ability to take personal ownership of projects and handle multiple priority matters at once has earned the enduring trust and confidence of his clients.

Over the past 20 years, Sean has successfully completed major leasing transactions totaling more than 10 million square feet of space across all sectors of commercial real estate, including retail, industrial, and office.  His leasing expertise is particularly strong in life science and retail asset types.  Sean also has extensive experience in the negotiation and documentation of purchase and sale transactions, sale-leaseback transactions, ground lease transactions, development agreements, property management agreements, and all other types of agreements relating to the use and development of real property. He represents highly sophisticated institutional investors, developers, public home builders and entrepreneurial individuals in the acquisition, development, leasing and sale of retail, office, residential and mixed-use projects throughout the United States.

Sean is a frequent lecturer at various legal educational seminars and real estate industry trade group conferences and programs. He is the co-author of several published articles including, "Private Shopping Malls — The 'Not-So-Private' Private Property" and "Lease Workouts in Troubled Times."  He was a partner at Allen Matkins prior to founding CGS3 in 2013.

Notable Cases/Deals

  • Represented a national landlord in connection with a 45,000-square-foot Burlington Coat Factory lease in Florida. This complex deal was successfully completed during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Represented a landlord in the lease of unimproved land to the City of San Diego in southern San Diego, California. The 26,000-square-foot space was converted into a new 128-bed bridge shelter for homeless residents as part of their transition into permanent housing.
  • Represented a major life science client in the acquisition and leaseback of a corporate campus in Massachusetts consisting of approximately 290,000 square feet of existing office, laboratory and R&D space in one of the most coveted locations for life science and technology in the United States.
  • Represented a landlord in a large, single-tenant industrial lease to the University of Southern California (USC) in San Diego, California. The 45,600-square-foot building was leased to USC for the development of a state-of-the-art Alzheimer research center and vivarium.  USC currently operates another R&D site adjacent to the newly leased property. Work included negotiating amendments to CC&Rs.
  • Represented a landlord in connection with a single tenant lease to a world-wide online retail logistics company for an approximately 141,500-square-foot distribution facility in San Diego, California. Subsequently represented the landlord as seller in connection with the sale of the asset.



  • Recipient, San Diego Super Lawyers, Real Estate (2018-2024)
  • Recipient, “Most Influential People in San Diego,” San Diego Business Journal (2023)
  • Recipient, “Top Attorneys in San Diego,” The American Registry (2023)
  • Recipient, “Top Influential Veteran Business Leaders,” San Diego Business Journal (2022-2023)
  • Finalist, “Veteran & Military Entrepreneur,” San Diego Business Journal (2018)
  • Recipient, “50 Most Influential Leaders in San Diego,” The Daily Transcript (2017)
  • Recipient, “San Diego’s Top Attorneys,” San Diego Metro Magazine (2017)
  • Recipient, “Best of the Bar,” San Diego Business Journal (2015-2016)
  • Recipient, “Readers’ Choice Top Influential,” San Diego Daily Transcript (2015)


  • J.D., Loyola Law School
  • B.A., International Relations, University of San Diego

Bar Admissions

  • California


  • International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), San Diego Chapter
  • NAIOP, San Diego Chapter
  • Southern California State Government Relations, Planning Committee Chair (2009-2011)
Sean Southard