AALRR Announces 2020 Equity and Non-Equity Partners


Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo (“AALRR”), is pleased to announce the promotion of six equity and three non-equity partners.

“Our new partners exemplify the diversity of the firm and its practices” commented managing partner Mark Palin. “We promoted attorneys working in six of our seven practice groups, spanning both the public and private sectors from multiple offices across the state.”

The members of the firm’s largest-ever new equity partner class are Sukhi Ahluwalia, David Boyer, Mark Bresee, Brent Garrett, Susan Steward and Brian Wheeler.

Sukhi Ahluwalia chairs AALRR’s charter schools team and has broad expertise in all matters related to charter schools, is a recognized leader throughout California in the field, and has been advising school districts and county offices of education on the full array of charter school matters almost since the inception of the Charter Schools Act. Ms. Ahluwalia has successfully represented charter school clients in a number of highly complex matters, including representing the districts with the only two “Parent Trigger” charter schools in the state.

David Boyer has more than 30 years of experience representing government agencies throughout California. He has been successful in representing public and private clients before federal and state regulatory and administrative tribunals on a variety of water and environmental matters. He has litigated civil actions involving water rights and supply, state water contracts, environmental and natural resources, public construction, public agency, eminent domain and inverse condemnation, land use, insurance coverage, and employment law. Mr. Boyer has also advised wholesale and retail water agencies on governance issues that involve due process hearings, conflicts of interest, and transparency in government.

Mark Bresee represents California public school and community college districts and county offices of education. His areas of practice include all aspects of labor and employment law, student issues including attendance and discipline, constitutional issues related to staff and students, the Brown Act, charter schools, statutory writ proceedings, and Public Records Act compliance. He has broad litigation experience in state and federal courts and with the Office of Administrative Hearings and the Public Employment Relations Board. Mr. Bresee is also skilled in arbitrating collective bargaining agreement disputes, and has served as the chief labor negotiator for numerous districts in collective bargaining with certificated and classified employee organizations.

Brent Garrett represents employers in all facets of labor and employment law.  Mr. Garrett represents employers across many industries, including petroleum refining, steel fabrication, manufacturing, healthcare, and construction.  He has extensive experience in traditional labor law matters, including representing employers in collective bargaining, strategic labor planning, unfair labor practice charges, elections, and grievance arbitrations.  Mr. Garrett routinely appears in state and federal court and also before the National Labor Relations Board.

Susan Steward provides expert representation to every client she serves, both as counsel and in the courtroom. Ms. Steward has worked closely with for-profit and nonprofit companies, governmental entities, trade associations, and many other organizations on legal matters including defending against claims of discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and wrongful termination. Ms. Steward also handles class action claims and Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) matters.  

Brian Wheeler leads the firm’s Intellectual Property Litigation Team. His practice focuses on intellectual property, high-stakes, complex commercial litigation and white collar defense and investigations. He has significant experience representing companies and organizations in intellectual property matters and all aspects of business litigation and pre-litigation counseling in myriad substantive areas of the law.  He has been named a “Rising Star” by Southern California Super Lawyers each year since 2017; a recognition of exceptional attorneys who are 40 years old or younger who have been practicing ten years or less.

The firm’s new non-equity partners are Brooke Jimenez, Kristin Myers and Peter Schaffert.

Brooke Jimenez represents California public school and community college districts and county offices of education in the areas of education law, employee discipline, harassment and discrimination complaints, and contract administration. She also handles general litigation matters, including discovery, depositions, mediations, and appeals.

Kristin Myers represents California school districts and county offices of education, specializing in special education and student discipline matters. Her practice focuses on Section 504 and IEP team meetings, resolution sessions, mediations, and due process hearings. Additionally, Ms. Myers represents school districts in federal court litigation regarding violations of the IDEA, Section 504, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Unruh Act. Ms. Myers also has significant litigation experience in delinquency and dependency proceedings.

Peter Schaffert represents public sector employers in all aspects of labor and employment law, including labor negotiations, grievance arbitration, discrimination/harassment claims, employee terminations and discipline, leaves, workplace privacy, wage and hour requirements and litigation. Mr. Schaffert also advises public sector employers in general counsel matters, including complying with the Brown Act, conflict of interest law and the Public Records Act.

About Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo

With over 40 years of unwavering commitment to client service, AALRR is one of California’s leading law firms. Our diverse team brings a seasoned perspective to California’s complex legal landscape for public and private entities, with particular strength in the areas of educationlabor and employmentconstructioncomplex litigationcorporate, taxation, and water. Our public sector clients include more than 400 K-12 school districts, community college districts and universities, as well as cities, counties and special districts. We also represent diverse business entities, from small, family-run businesses to publicly traded corporations. At 200 lawyers and growing, AALRR has nine offices in CerritosFresnoIrvineMarinPasadena, PleasantonRiversideSacramento and San Diego to serve our clients throughout California. For more information about AALRR, visit our website at www.aalrr.com.

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