FRESNO, Calif. (August 21, 2019) — Local law firm Whitney, Thompson & Jeffcoach has hired three new attorneys to join their team. Carl Refuerzo, Partner, Courtney McKeever, Partner, and Anna Barcus Allen, Associate, join the firm with nearly 50 years of combined experience in transactional business law. These new team members will allow WTJ to expand their services, growing from a boutique litigation firm into a full-service, boutique business firm; a significant development for clients all over the Central Valley.

The new WTJ transactional department will specialize in assisting businesses in all aspects of
corporate and business law, from formation to operation or sale, including agribusiness, mergers and acquisitions, real estate, corporate compliance, and water law. These additions help to round out the business practice area in the firm, as the firm already has a breadth of knowledge concerning commercial law. WTJ regularly counsels its clients on employment compliance issues involving wage and hour violations, as well as anti-harassment and anti-discrimination regulations.

“We saw a high-quality group of lawyers with solid values who enjoyed practicing law in a team
environment. They had a clear vision of the law firm they wanted to be—not the biggest firm, just the best,” said Refuerzo. “WTJ prides itself on providing clients with the best legal advice while maintaining a work-life balance for its lawyers. We found that very attractive.”

Before joining WTJ, Refuerzo, McKeever, and Barcus Allen were with Baker Manock & Jensen PC in
Fresno. Carl Refuerzo, former managing partner at Baker Manock & Jensen, specializes in the areas of corporate and business law, agribusiness, mergers and acquisitions, real estate, and water law. Courtney McKeever’s practice focuses on the formation of corporations, limited liability companies, and partnerships and the representation of business, agribusiness, and healthcare clients with business contracts of all types. Anna Barcus Allen has successfully counseled clients in matters of business, real estate, employment counseling, agriculture, corporate governance, and finance, as well as healthcare. WTJ is thrilled to have these three dedicated, talented attorneys join their team.

This firm expansion comes on the heels of another hire: the Honorable James Ardaiz, retired
Administrative Presiding Justice from California’s Fifth District Court of Appeal. Prior to joining the WTJ team, he was with Baker, Manock & Jensen PC in Fresno since 2011. Since retiring from the Court of Appeal, Justice Ardaiz’s practice has primarily consisted of mediation, arbitration and appellate evaluation, and strategic planning in large litigation. His many years of success are a great asset to WTJ, especially during this period of change and growth.

“We are excited to expand the areas of expertise for our clients with lawyers who share our firm’s core values of teamwork and quality client service,” said Mandy Jeffcoach, a founding Partner. “We look forward to being able to provide all of our clients with the highest level of work, from start to finish, under one roof.”

Retired Justice Joins Whitney, Thompson & Jeffcoach

Whitney, Thompson & Jeffcoach is proud to announce their newest addition, Justice James Ardaiz, retired Administrative Presiding Justice from California’s Fifth District Court of Appeal. Prior to joining the WTJ team, he was with Baker, Manock & Jensen PC in Fresno since 2011.

“I am pleased to join Whitney Thompson & Jeffcoach, an innovative law firm with highly accomplished attorneys and a cutting edge perspective on providing legal services to its impressive client base,” said Ardaiz.

Justice Ardaiz’s experience as a trial and appellate judge includes business, personal injury, governmental policy, environmental, agricultural, estate, and property disputes. He has authored over 2,000 appellate opinions and participated in over 6,000 total opinions, encompassing all areas of the law practiced in the State Courts of California, with precedent-setting opinions in virtually all areas of the law. As a trial judge, he primarily handled general civil and criminal trials.

Since retiring from the Court of Appeal, Justice Ardaiz’s practice has primarily consisted of mediation, arbitration and appellate evaluation, and strategic planning in large litigation, although he does act as counsel to a limited number of commercial clients. His primary case involvement has been in commercial and property disputes, with personal injury being a lesser portion of his case load.

“We are honored to have such an experienced, distinguished former judge join our team,” said Marshall Whitney. “Jim Ardaiz aligns perfectly with our principles and goals for our clients, and his many years of success are a great asset to us.”

Four Partners Leave McCormick Barstow to Establish New Firm

Whitney, Thompson & Jeffcoach, LLP

FRESNO, Calif. (February 9, 2018) — Fresno business litigation attorneys Marshall Whitney, Tim Thompson, Mandy Jeffcoach, and Niki Cunningham are leaving McCormick Barstow to establish a new boutique litigation firm named Whitney, Thompson & Jeffcoach, LLP (WTJ), bringing years of experience together to create a new legal practice. The WTJ office is located at 8050 N. Palm Avenue, Suite 110 in Fresno, and the firm can be reached at and (559) 753-2550. See direct contact information for the partners below:

Marshall Whitney, Partner

Tim Thompson, Partner

Mandy Jeffcoach, Partner

Niki Cunningham, Partner

McCormick Barstow Partners Form New Women-Owned Law Firm

Fresno Business Journal

Four partners with Fresno law firm McCormick Barstow have struck out on their own to form a new boutique firm that will be majority women-owned.

Former McCormick partners Tim Thompson, Marshall Whitney, Mandy Jeffcoach and Niki Cunningham have joined forces to establish Whitney, Thompson & Jeffcoach. The attorneys have years of trial experience in areas including professional malpractice defense, business litigation, health care law, public entity defense, estate and trust litigation and construction law.

Combined, the four have nearly 90 years of experience in litigation practice and hope to create a lasting legacy in the Central Valley legal scene with their new firm — called WTJ for short.

WTJ’s clients include family-owned businesses, Fortune 500 companies, accountants, lawyers, physicians, farmers, landowners and other professional.

In addition to an emphasis on serving clients, WTJ’s attorneys said they will also focus on creating a culture of teamwork to foster creativity and problem solving.

“The founding of this new firm, based on the core values we will require of each other, energizes me to look forward to many more years of successfully serving our clients,” said Whitney, who had been with McCormick Barstow since 1978.

As a majority women-owned law firm, there will also be an emphasis on achieving a better work-life balance using collaboration, flexible schedules and remote-working technology — methods to exceed client needs while not being confined within four walls.

“Both women and men today want to spend quality time with their families,” Jeffcoach said. “It’s important for us to respect that balance, and our clients like to see that is a part of our overall teamwork and firm culture.”

In addition to the four partners, WTJ will begin with two support staffers, and will soon begin looking for a couple more associates to join the firm.

“Our approach to this firm opens a lot of doors in practicing law that others may not have available to them,” Cunningham said. “We want the right people, who are in this industry for the right reasons.”

Thompson described the split with McCormick Barstow as amicable, with some surprised of the move and others not since the four operated as a sort of unit within the Valley’s largest law firm.

Thompson said he and his partners are excited to start building a “separate and different legacy.”

“It is a tremendous responsibility when a client trusts us to resolve their legal disputes or counsel a business on ways to avoid disputes and grow their business,” he said. “We all feel blessed for these opportunities to serve and know that our clients recognize and appreciate the teamwork and collaboration my partners will all provide in our service.”

The WTJ office is located at 8050 N. Palm Ave., Suite 110, in Fresno. The firm can be reached at or 559-753-2550.

WTJ Attorneys Receive Recognition for Excellence in Industry

Northern California Super Lawyers releases 2018 selections

FRESNO, Calif. (July 31, 2018) — Whitney, Thompson & Jeffcoach is pleased to announce that all five of the firm’s partners, as well as one associate, have been selected as 2018 Northern California Super Lawyers or Rising Stars. Marshall Whitney and Tim Thompson have been named on the list of Top 100 Super Lawyers, Mandy Jeffcoach has been chosen as a Business Litigation Super Lawyer, and Niki Cunningham and Kristi Marshall are listed as Business Litigation Rising Stars. Associate Kelley Lowe has also been named as a Civil Litigation Defense Rising Star.

Each year, no more than 5 percent of the attorneys in any one state are designated as Super Lawyers, and only 2.5 percent of attorneys in any one state are named as Rising Stars. Rising Stars represent the top up-and-coming lawyers who are under 40 years old or who have been practicing law for ten years or less.

“This is an incredible achievement not just for us as individual attorneys, but for our firm as a whole,” Marshall Whitney, WTJ Partner, said. “As we consistently strive toward excellence, these accolades confirm that we’re making an impact in our industry. We’re honored to be recognized for providing expert legal counsel to our valued clients in the Central Valley.”

Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The multiphase selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. Bar associations and courts across the country have recognized the legitimacy of the Super Lawyers selection process.