Adam Steinbaugh


A Colorado native, in 2001 Adam moved westward to Los Angeles, where he attended Whittier College and graduated cum laude from Loyola Law School. Before attending law school, Adam worked for’s online security team. During law school, he served as an assistant to professor Aaron Caplan, researching the First Amendment issues involved in the use of restraining orders to enjoin civil harassment.

In 2016, Adam joined FIRE, working on the Individual Rights Defense Program to defend the rights of students and faculty members. After leading this team from 2018-2022, he became part of FIRE’s litigation team.

Adam is a member of the California and Pennsylvania state bars, admitted to the Federal District Courts for the Central District of California, Northern District of California, Southern District of California, Eastern District of California, and District of Colorado. Adam is also a member of the First Amendment Lawyers Association.

Published Writings

Available Speeches

  • When to Pull the FIRE Alarm (Free Speech, the FIrst Amendment, and How FIRE Can Help):  A brief overview of the First Amendment and freedom of expression in higher education and how FIRE can help those whose rights are threatened.
  • Excepting the Unacceptable (Or: What to Except When You’re Excepting): Discussing the categorical exceptions to the First Amendment as viewed through the lens of FIRE cases.
  • The First Amendment in Cyberspace: How the First Amendment applies to social media and higher education.