Joseph E. Martineau focuses his practice on media and communications law as well as intellectual property law, health law litigation, and complex commercial litigation. His clients include local and national major media representatives. Joe has tried cases in both the state and federal courts in Missouri and Illinois, and he has argued cases in the appellate and Supreme Courts in each state.

Joe writes articles and publications in the fields of defamation and invasion of privacy law, the First Amendment, and media law in general. An adjunct professor at Washington University for 20 years, he teaches a course on communications law. Furthermore, Joe frequently appears on panels and conferences dealing with media law issues, and he authored the Missouri Bar CLE Tort Law chapters on Defamation, Invasion of Privacy, and Reputational Damages. 

Joe was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers® 2005-2024. Additionally, he was named by Best Lawyers "St. Louis Litigation - First Amendment Lawyer of the Year" for 2012, 2016, 2019, and 2021 and "St. Louis Media Lawyer of the Year" for 2017 and 2024. He was selected for inclusion in Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers® 2009-2021, and he is AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell. Joe is the head of the Firm's Media Practice Committee.

Practice Areas


  • Saint Louis University School of Law (J.D., magna cum laude, 1982)
    • Order of the Woolsack
    • Dean’s List, all semesters
    • Saint Louis University Law Journal, research editor
  • Stonehill College (B.A., magna cum laude, 1979)
    • Political Science, Economics

Legal Background

  • Adjunct professor of communications law, Washington University - University College
  • Student law clerk intern, Hon. Theodore McMillan, United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit (1981)
  • Insurance defense, Gundlach, Lee, Eggman, Boyle & Roessler (1980-1981)
  • Intern, Public Defender Service, Washington, DC (1978)

Professional Affiliations

  • Forum Committee on Communications Law, American Bar Association
  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
  • Lawyer's Committee, Libel Defense Resource Center


  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. District Courts
    • Eastern District of Missouri
    • Southern, Northern, and Central District of Illinois
    • District of Colorado
    • Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • Missouri Bar
  • Illinois Bar

Charitable & Civic Activities

  • Board of Directors, Missouri Press Foundation