Victoria B. Bjorklund is a Retired Partner at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP where she founded and headed the Firm’s Exempt Organizations Group, which advises public charities, private foundations, boards, and donors.
The 2013 Legal 500 described Ms. Bjorklund as “[t]he highly respected … dean of the practice” in awarding both top-tier and leading lawyer rankings. She was named “2014 Nonprofit Lawyer of the Year” by her peers in Best Lawyers magazine. In 2012, Ms. Bjorklund received the Vanguard Award for Lifetime Achievement and Commitment to Nonprofit Law from the American Bar Association’s Business Law Section, recognizing her distinguished lifetime achievement and role in development of the field of nonprofit law. Ms. Bjorklund chaired the ABA Tax Section Committee on Exempt Organizations from 2000-2002 and has since served as Co-Chair of the Subcommittee on International Philanthropy. She has been honored with numerous awards for her involvement in post-9/11 legal challenges, Civil Liberties issues, as well as her involvement in New York City civic leadership and the IRS’s Tax Exempt/Government Entities Advisory Committee (ACT).
From 1989 through 2001, Ms. Bjorklund served as a director, secretary and still serves as pro bono legal counsel for Doctors Without Borders, the emergency medical relief organization that was awarded the 1999 Nobel Peace Prize. She is also a director of the Robin Hood Foundation, where she chairs the Robin Hood Sandy Relief Fund. She is a director of the American Friends of the Louvre, the Louvre Endowment, Friends of Fondation de France, the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, Princeton University, and the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
Ms. Bjorklund speaks and writes frequently on exempt-organization subjects, including “Choosing Among Private Foundations, Supporting Organizations, and Donor-Advised Funds.” She is the co- author with Jim Fishman and Dan Kurtz of New York Nonprofit Law and Practice (LexisNexis, 2d Ed. 2007 and annual supplements). She also teaches The Law of Nonprofit Organizations at Harvard Law School.
She earned her J.D. at Columbia University School of Law, a Ph.D. in Medieval Studies from Yale University, and a B.A., magna cum laude, from Princeton University, where she graduated in three years and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Ms. Bjorklund was the Co-Chair of the Firm’s Diversity Committee for nearly a decade and a former Co-Chair of its Pro Bono Committee.
Michael is the founding shareholder of Bourland, Wall & Wenzel, P.C., a Fort Worth, Texas law firm which represent individuals, closely held and family businesses, professional practices and charitable organizations within its areas of legal practice. He earned a B.A. from Baylor University and his J.D. from Baylor University School of Law. He earned his LL.M. in Taxation from University of Miami, Florida. Michael’s practice is directed to business, tax, estate planning, probate, charitable entity and charitable giving law.. He speaks regularly throughout the United States on subjects within his practice areas at seminars conducted by, among others, American Bar Association, American Law Institute-American Bar Association, Texas Bar Association, Texas Society of CPAs and Notre Dame, Duke and Tulane Universities. He speaks regularly to churches and church leaders on the creation of church foundations and contributes on subjects within his practice areas to publications including the New York Times, Nation’s Business, Business Week and Money magazine. Michael is a co-author of , first, second and third editions. Michael is adjunct professor of law, co-teaching the Nonprofit Organizations course of the Baylor University School of Law. He is a guest lecturer in estate planning at the law school as well as at Baylor University School of Business, and he has lectured on a range of subjects at Southern Methodist University School of Law, University of Texas School of Law and The Center for American and International Law.
Paul’s practice has a four-part focus. First, Paul represents tax-exempt organizations, principally in the scientific research, educational, and health care sectors. Second, Paul advises for-profit businesses on general corporate matters, including corporate organization, finance, and mergers and acquisitions. Third, Paul advises individuals and businesses in tax controversies, including tax disputes in federal and state courts. Fourth, Paul leads our firm’s effort when we are engaged to conduct internal investigations.
Paul received his law degree from the University of Houston, where he served as Editor of the Houston Law Review and as President of the Scholastic honorary. He earned his LL.M. in Taxation from New York University School of Law where he was named a Lasker Scholar.
Paul’s professional activities include service as Chair of the San Diego County Bar Association Taxation Law Section and of its Customs Law Section. Paul is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the San Diego Tax Practitioners Club, and the State Bar of Texas. He is active in the Business Law Section, and the Taxation Law Section, of The State Bar of California, and of the American Bar Association. In 1988, Paul was named a Fellow, and in 1997 a Life Fellow, of the American Bar Foundation. In 1999, he was elected a Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel. Paul is a member of the Forum for Corporate Directors, and has authored various “Points to Consider” for directors and management. He is a Fellow of the American Board of Forensic Accounting and is registered as a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Illinois.
Paul maintains a full speaking, writing and continuing education schedule. He has served as an adjunct professor of taxation law for the USD School of Law for over 25 years, and has taught as an instructor in the UCSD Extension Program for ERISA Paralegals. His lecture credits include dozens of business and professional groups. Paul’s articles have appeared in Taxes, The Journal of Taxation, California Tax Lawyer, and The Tax Lawyer, among others. Paul has edited a column in both an industry magazine and in the San Diego Business Journal. Paul is a contributory author to the University of California Press/State Bar of California legal treatise titled “Advising California Nonprofit Corporations” and to the Lexis Nexis Matthew Bender treatise titled, “California Forms of Pleading and Practice.” In 1993 he received a Course Sequence Award in “The Business of Biotechnology” from the UCSD College of Extended Studies.
Douglas K. Freeman J.D., L. L. M. is Director of First Foundation Inc. and Senior Managing Director of First Foundation Advisors. He provides strategic planning and organizational management advice for business, nonprofit, foundation, and family clients. He has served as consultant to nearly 300 family foundations, support organizations and public charities throughout the United States. A retired tax attorney and founder of the Los Angeles-based law firm, Freeman, Freeman & Smiley, LLP, Doug is a past Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the University of California, Irvine Foundation and chairman of its $1 billion campaign. He is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of Orange County’s Pacific Symphony and a member of the Board of Advisors of the University of Southern California Center on Philanthropy and Public Policy.
Edwin practices law in Lake Charles, Louisiana and is a member of the Louisiana, Texas and District of Columbia Bars. He is a Board Certified Tax Attorney, a graduate of the LSU Law School where he was inducted into Order of the Coif and edited the Louisiana Law Review. He has spoken on tax, estate planning and philanthropy at continuing legal education programs in Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas, as well as published articles on these topics and mineral law. Public Service- past chair of the Section on Taxation of the Louisiana State Bar Association, member of the Louisiana Educational Television Authority, member of the Governor's Commission on Public Broadcasting, counsel for the Louisiana Commissioner for Indian Affairs; Philanthropy- a founding director of the Community Clinic of Southwest Louisiana and the Community Foundation for Southwest Louisiana; trustee for the Joe W. and Dorothy Dorsett Brown Foundation, the Fritz Lang Foundation, the Olive Tupper Foundation and the Chambers Medical Foundation. Business- director of companies in the fields of cardiology, orthopedics, stem cell research and nutraceuticals.
Patricia Jo Mayer is a senior tax manager for Moss Adams LLP, which is the 11th largest accounting firm in the United States. She has specialized in tax and related tax planning with emphasis in not-for-profit organizations and private foundations, as well as complex high-net worth individuals, closely-held corporations, and real estate development.
Patty is the Southern California regional not-for-profit tax expert of Moss Adams; servicing the needs of Los Angeles, Orange County, Sacramento and San Diego offices. She is a designated quality control reviewer for the not-for-profit returns prepared by Moss Adams as well as the quality control tax reviewer for all San Diego office not-for-profit audit reports.
Patty serves on Moss Adams' Not-for-Profit Tax Committee. In this role, she has taught several tax-related seminars to firm wide Moss Adams not-for-profit tax professionals through Web-X and live seminars. She has also been a speaker at various not-for-profit seminars in the San Diego community sponsored by Moss Adams as well as an instructor for the National Business Institute relating to not-for-profit subjects. Patty regularly attends Tax-Exempt Organization seminars conducted by the Georgetown University Law Center and Private Foundation tax seminars sponsored by the Salk Institute.
She is a current board member and treasurer for Kids on the Block of San Diego, a non-profit organization and member of the San Diego Foundation Advisory Committee. She is a member of the California Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, including AICPA Tax Division. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration specializing in accounting from San Diego State University.
Suzanne is a partner in the Washington office of Steptoe & Johnson LLP, where she focuses on the law of tax-exempt organizations with particular emphasis on tax, corporate governance, and commercial transactions. She has extensive experience with the nonprofit sector including representation of exempt organizations on a broad spectrum of matters as a private practitioner; service at the US Treasury Department where she was responsible for all legislative and regulatory issues affecting exempt organizations; and work as senior vice-president and deputy general counsel for the National Geographic Society where she developed cost-effective practical solutions for a wide variety of complex legal and business issues. Ms. McDowell is a frequent speaker at conferences and is the author of several papers. She currently serves on the advisory board of The Exempt Organization Tax Review and the Journal of Taxation of Exempt Organizations. She co-authors Steptoe's Exempt Organizations Advisory.
Anthony D. Werley joined JP Morgan in 2003 as a Managing Director and is currently the Chief Investment Officer of the Endowments & Foundations Group.
Mr. Werley has served in management, sales and investment capacities for institutional and private clients for over 30 years. He was an early adopter of alternative strategies in multi asset class portfolios, and has actively promoted the practice of open architecture portfolio construction around a firm's core competencies. Prior to joining the firm he was with the Greystone consulting unit within Morgan Stanley as Head of US Transaction Advisory. Earlier in his career, he served as President and co-founder of Asian research and private equity boutique Clarion Capital and was the Global Head of Private Client Services for CS First Boston. Previous to his current role he was the Global Head of Portfolio Construction within the JP Morgan Private Bank.
Mr. Werley holds a B.A. from Georgetown University and an M.B.A. from New York University.