As much as Greg thrives on trying cases, his primary mission and passion is understanding and helping to solve his clients’ business challenges. At RSHC, he leads the antitrust and competition practice. He is also an active member of the firm’s class actions and commercial litigation groups. He is committed to providing effective and creative counsel to support the strategic goals of his clients. His understanding of, and experience in, economics, accounting, marketing, distribution, and finance help him to team effectively with clients. Greg will frame, present, and try a case when that’s the best solution or craft creative settlements when that option is the wiser course.
In Greg’s view, solving problems born in the past is only part of his job. He aims to offer advice and strategy that his clients can use and rely upon as they do business in the future.
Through four decades of representing athletic associations, manufacturers, trade associations, and academic institutions, Greg has cultivated an unparalleled depth of knowledge about antitrust, sports, entertainment, and education. He has successfully represented many high-profile defendants, including the National Collegiate Athletic Association, in precedent-setting cases.
Greg frequently serves as lead counsel in nationwide antitrust disputes and class actions for clients in a wide range of industries and has appeared in numerous state and federal courts.
He is a former chairman of the Antitrust Section of the State Bar of Michigan, and was the primary drafter of the Michigan Antitrust Reform Act.
- Successfully defended the Sally Jesse Raphael show in a high-profile lawsuit filed by Scientology, which alleged the TV show’s interview with an elderly church member invaded her privacy under the Michigan Eavesdropping Act. The case was tried and won on the basis that the religious organization wanted to silence its critics, and that the Sally Jesse Raphael show was doing a public service through its reporting.
- Led, obtained a preliminary injunction, and favorably settled a lawsuit on behalf of Antidote Films International, Robert Altman, and a consortium of independent filmmakers, producers and directors, against the Motion Picture Association of America for violating the antitrust laws. The MPAA banned awards-show screeners outside of its own voting membership, which put independent filmmakers at a disadvantage.
- Represented the Mariners’ Church of Detroit in its successful effort to remain independent of the Episcopal Church, which attempted to take over the small church made famous in Gordon Lightfoot’s “Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.” The oldest stone building in Detroit, in existence for more than 100 years, remains independent.
- Served as lead counsel for Valassis Communications, Inc. in a competition case against News America Marketing. A long jury trial resulted in a successful verdict, leading to Valassis receiving $500 million in cash and other favorable terms.
- Represented the National Collegiate Athletic Association in the O’Bannon student athlete-likeness litigation. Defeated class certification on a damages class, which resulted in the plaintiffs being deprived of claims that might have been worth billions of dollars.
- Counseled the NCAA in a lawsuit filed by Aloha Sports, alleging the NCAA had improperly denied certification to a football postseason bowl game. A Hawaii state jury found in favor of the NCAA.
- Advised the NCAA in a case filed by Worldwide Sports, alleging that the NCAA violated federal antitrust law by limiting the number of tournament events that Division 1 college basketball teams could participate in. The lower court enjoined the rule, but the Sixth Circuit reversed on appeal.
- Served as Counsel to Antidote Films International in a fraud lawsuit it filed against novelist JT Leroy. The filmmaker had optioned the movie rights to an autobiography by the novelist, who turned out to be a fictitious character created by writer Laura Albert. The jury found in favor of Antidote, ruling that Albert defrauded the film production company.
- Successfully represented the NCAA in the district court and in the Seventh Circuit in a challenge to its athletic scholarship rules.
University of Michigan Law School, J.D., 1970
University of Michigan, B.B.A., Business Administration, 1967
U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (Trial Bar)
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
American Bar Association
Section of Antitrust Law
Civil Practice Procedure Committee
New York State Bar Association
Sixth Circuit Judicial Conference
State Bar of Michigan
Committee to Revise Michigan Antitrust Act, Chairperson
Honors & Awards
Best Lawyers in America
Best Lawyers® (Antitrust Law, 2005-2021; Commercial Litigation, 2013-2021; Litigation-Antitrust, 2011-2021; Sports Law, 2007-2021)
Michigan Leading Lawyer
Law Bulletin Media Leading Lawyers (2014-2020)
Top 100 Leading Michigan Lawyers
Law Bulletin Media Leading Lawyers (2017-2019)
Top 100 Leading Michigan Business Lawyers
Law Bulletin Media Leading Lawyers (2017-2019)
Top 100 Leading Michigan Outstate Lawyers
Law Bulletin Media Leading Lawyers (2017-2020)
Thomson Reuters (2006‐2020)
Top Rated Litigators
Martindale-Hubbell and ALM (2019-2020)
Who's Who Legal
Law Business Research Ltd. (Sports & Entertainment, 2017-2019)
Chambers & Partners (2012‐2017)
Euromoney's Benchmark Litigation (2013, 2017)
Peer Reviewed AV® Preeminent™
Martindale-Hubbell (Since 2011)
“Greg Curtner, “Antitrust Litigation at Its Very Best,” (editorial profile) Leading Lawyers Magazine—Michigan Edition (April 2020)
“Defining the Market to Avoid Dismissal in Antitrust Actions,” (co‑author) Daily Journal (Aug. 5, 2016)
“Eaton Case Could Allow Supreme Court to Refine Standards in Monopolization Cases,” (co‑author) Bloomberg BNA – Antitrust & Trade Regulation Report (Feb. 8, 2013)
“How Sports, Celebrities, and Videogames Reshape the Law of Publicity,” (co‑author) Sports Litigation Alert (Dec. 28, 2012)
“Exclusive: Videos Detail News America Tactics Against Competitors,” CNN (Oct. 14, 2011)
“Show and Tell: Misappropriation of the Right of Publicity,” Counseling Clients in the Entertainment Industry 2011 Practicing Law Institute, New York, NY (Mar. 16, 2011)
“Combating Corporate Espionage,” Entertainment & Sports Law Conference and Intellectual Property Law Institute, Guanacaste, Costa Rica (Nov. 4-8, 2010)
“Use of Athletes’ Images: An Active Area of Litigation and Licensing,” Santa Clara Law Sports Law Symposium, Santa Clara, CA (Sep. 16, 2010)
“Getting Real About Making It In Hollywood,” American Bar Association Forum on the Entertainment and Sports Industries First Annual International Legal Symposium on the World of Music, Film, Television and Sports, Miami Beach, FL (Apr. 22-24, 2010)
“Entertainment Case Law Update,” Entertainment & Sports Law Conference and Intellectual Property Law Institute, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (Nov. 11-15, 2009)
“The BCS: Antitrust Goes Bowling?,” (co‑author) GCP Magazine (May 2009)
“2008 Developments in Sports Antitrust Cases,” Entertainment & Sports Law Conference and Intellectual Property Law Institute, Los Cabos, Mexico (Nov. 12-16, 2008)
“When Must Competitors Compete? Antitrust, Sports and the ‘Trade or Commerce’ Requirement,” ABA Antitrust Section Teleconference (Oct. 24, 2007)
“Amateurism and Student-Athlete Representation Under NCAA Regulations,” Entertainment & Sports Law Conference and Intellectual Property Law Institute, San Juan, Puerto Rico (Nov. 7-11, 2007)
“Antitrust and League Sports: What Happens When Someone Calls a Foul on the Referee?,” (co‑author) The ABA Trade Association Committee Newsletter (Summer 2007)
“Economic Loss Doctrine,” Wayne State University Law School (Nov. 2006)
“Tying Arrangements after Illinois Tool: The End of the Per-Se Era?,” (co‑author) Intellectual Property Litigation, ABA Section of Litigation – Intellectual Property Committee, vol. 18, no. 1 (2006)
“Relevant Markets in Intercollegiate Sports,” 2005 Antitrust and Trade Regulation Seminar, Santa Fe, New Mexico (July 7-9, 2005)
“Symposium on Copyright, Piracy, and the Future of Independent Filmmaking,” (panel moderator), 2004 Los Angeles Film Festival (June 17-26, 2004)
Civic and Charitable MembershipsBarton Hills Maintenance Corporation, Board of Directors, President
Dispute Resolution Center (Ann Arbor, MI), Board of Directors
Correctional Association of New York, Former Member of Board of Directors
Osborne Association, Former Member of Board of Directors