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About Us

Our attorneys are accessible and responsive. We are here to serve our client. Taking care of our clients and their borrowers is a way of life that allows us to provide 'Service Second to None'.

McCarthy & Holthus, LLP's attorneys and management have years of experience in mortgage servicing and specifically managing mortgages in default. McCarthy & Holthus serves the states of California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, and Colorado in legal representation before U.S. Bankruptcy Courts, U.S. District Courts and the State Courts. We pride ourselves on knowing the judges and the "local-local" rules to effectively represent our Lender clients. We can represent financial institutions from routine to complex litigation. We understand that our clients rely upon us and we recognize the great responsibility that comes with each referral sent to McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. Managing timelines is a way of life so that we can provide "Service Second to None."

FOUNDING PARTNERS

(Click on names to read bios)

Kevin R. McCarthy is licensed to practice in the state of California and a founding partner of McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. Mr. McCarthy also an AV rated attorney is a member of the California State Bar Association's Real Property Section and member of the MBA Legal Affairs Committee. Further, his membership in numerous organizations such at The United Trustee's Association and The Mortgage Banker's Association allows him to be at the forefront in the industry. Mr. McCarthy has over 25 years in the real estate industry and uses his extensive experience to help develop practical responses and solutions for lender needs. Mr. McCarthy has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking him at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

Thomas J. Holthus has been managing default servicing from both a legal and business perspective since 1984. Mr. Holthus is an AV rated attorney by Martindale-Hubble and is licensed to practice law in the states of California, Nevada, and Nebraska. Mr. Holthus has been a partner in McCarthy & Holthus, LLP since 1999. Previously Mr. Holthus was Executive Vice President and Manager of the Asset Resolution Division of HomeComings Financial Network, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of GMAC/RFC. Mr. Holthus was CEO and General Counsel of American Custody Corp (ACC) which was sold to GMAC/RFC in 1996. Prior to ACC, Mr. Holthus was Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Northeast Savings, F.A.

PARTNERS

(Click on names to read bios)

Matthew E. Podmenik

Matthew E. Podmenik is the Managing Partner for the Southwest for McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. He received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Dayton and an MBA and JD from the University of Toledo. Mr. Podmenik was a research assistant to Professor Roger Anderson and his work can be seen in the update to the textbook Fundamentals of Trusts and Estates. Mr. Podmenik has authored articles involving foreclosure issues for the United Trustee Association and the California Real Property Law Reporter. Mr. Podmenik is admitted to practice in the state of California. Mr. Podmenik has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

Katie Jo Keeling

Katie Jo Keeling is the Managing Partner overseeing Default Service practice groups for McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. She is licensed to practice law in California, Washington, and the California Southern and Central District Federal Courts. She was named in the August 2014 issue of MReport as part of the publication's Women in Housing “35 Under 35” feature, as well as a Top Lawyer 2015 in San Diego Magazine. Mrs. Keeling is a Martindale-Hubbell® AV rated attorney in Real Estate, Debtor and Creditor, and Finance law. She earned her undergraduate Business Economics degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and went on to obtain a law degree from the University of San Diego School of Law. Mrs. Keeling is a member of the United Trustee's Association and ALFN WILL (Women in Legal Leadership) Practice Group. She was formerly the Associate General Counsel, Risk Management & Compliance Director, and then President of a non-judicial foreclosure Trustee company. Ms. Keeling has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

Lance Olsen

Lance Olsen joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 as the Managing Partner for the Northwest offices. Lance brings nearly 20 years of experience representing the interests of institutional and individual creditors in all manner of default and litigation related matters. Mr. Olsen graduated magna cum laude with a degree in Economics from Western Washington University . In 1995, he earned his law degree from Seattle University, also magna cum laude. Mr. Olsen is AV rated, has been recognized by a variety of publications for outstanding legal work, has served in leadership positions for numerous professional organizations, and is a frequent lecturer on topics ranging from bankruptcy to best practices in the area of default servicing. Mr. Olsen is admitted to practice law in the states of Washington, Oregon and Idaho as well as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Olsen has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

JaVonne M. Phillips

JaVonne M. Phillips joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2003 and is its Bankruptcy Managing Partner. She has extensive legal experience with a business background. Ms. Phillips obtained a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Finance from the University of Oklahoma in 1992. She graduated from the University Of San Diego School Of Law in 1995. Her legal work ultimately led her to accepting a position at the Stanislaus County District Attorney's Office in Modesto, California, where she rapidly became a Senior Prosecutor. She possesses extensive courtroom experience, which includes conducting over 40 jury and bench trials. Ms. Phillips is admitted to practice law in the state of California. Ms. Phillips has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

Kristin Schuler-Hintz

Kristin Schuler-Hintz is the Managing Partner for the Nevada office of McCarthy & Holthus. Ms. Schuler-Hintz, graduated from the University of Nevada Las Vegas, with a BA in Psychology and obtained her law degree from the University of San Diego School of Law in 1999. While at USD, she received the CALI Award for Excellence in Conflict of Laws and was recognized as one of the best Oral Advocates during her first year of Law School. In addition, she contributed to the Children's Regulatory Law Reporter and was published in the Journal of Contemporary Legal Issues - Issues in California Family Law. Ms. Schuler-Hintz is a frequent guest speaker at CLE's on the subject of foreclosure mediation and Lender/Servicer related issues. She is admitted to practice law before all the courts in the states of California and Nevada. Ms. Shuler-Hintz has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

Wendy Walter

Wendy Walter is a Partner of the firm based out of our Washington office. Mrs. Walter is an AV rated attorney and is a member of the Washington and Oregon state bar associations. After graduating from University of Alaska Fairbanks (magna cum laude) and from Seattle University School of law (magna cum laude) she got started in mortgage servicing handling bankruptcy and judicial foreclosure cases. She previously worked as senior counsel for Washington Mutual Bank, supporting the servicing business. Before joining McCarthy Holthus, Mrs. Walter was RCO Legal's national managing attorney. She is a frequent speaker at local CLEs and national industry conferences, and has published articles on the CFPB servicing rules, the Uniform Foreclosure Procedures Act, and other national and state legislative and regulatory changes affecting default mortgage servicing. Ms. Walter has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

Paul Levine

Paul M. Levine is the managing partner in the Scottsdale, Arizona office. Mr. Levine has been in practice since 1983 and has tried numerous jury and non-jury trials in both state and federal court. In 2006, he was the lead attorney for a company that obtained the fifth largest jury verdict in the state of Arizona. Mr. Levine is licensed to practice in all state and federal courts in Arizona and California. Mr. Levine is a member of the real property section of the Arizona state bar.

Cole Patton

Cole Patton is the Managing Partner, Texas, for McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. He has a B.B.A. in finance from Texas Tech University and a J.D from Southern Methodist University School of Law. Mr. Patton was licensed to practice in the State of Texas in 2002, and licensed to practice in Mississippi in 2005. Since that time, Mr. Patton has practiced before the United States District & Bankruptcy Courts for the Northern, Southern, Eastern and Western Districts of Texas along with the Northern & Southern Districts of Mississippi. He routinely practices in both Texas State and Federal Court representing secured lenders and financial institutions. Cole worked in default servicing for several Dallas-area servicers in the areas of Foreclosure, Bankruptcy, REO, Claims and Loss Recovery from 1997 through 2003. Prior to joining McCarthy & Holthus, LLP, he managed Texas litigation, foreclosure and eviction for a Dallas area law firm.

Holly R. Shilliday

Holly R. Shilliday joined the firm in 2014 as the Managing Attorney for the Colorado office of McCarthy & Holthus, LLP, and is now a Partner of the firm. She received a B.A. from the University of Denver and earned a J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law. After law school, she clerked for the Honorable Samuel L. Bufford, a bankruptcy judge in the Central District of California. Ms. Shilliday is a frequent lecturer and author of articles on creditors’ rights issues. She serves on the board of the Denver Metro Chamber Leadership Foundation and Littleton Academy Charter School and was recently appointed by Governor Hickenlooper to the Council of Advisors on Consumer Credit. Ms. Shilliday is admitted to practice in all courts in Colorado, California and the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Andrew J. Boylan

Andrew J. Boylan is a Partner of the firm overseeing Risk Management & Compliance and is the firm’s Chief Compliance Officer. After graduating from the University of San Diego, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Spanish, he received his Juris Doctorate degree from the University Of San Diego School Of Law and his MBA from the University Of San Diego Graduate School Of Business Administration. He is a member of the United Trustee’s Association and the California Mortgage Bankers Association’s Future Leaders Program. He has spoken on regulatory compliance issues at numerous mortgage industry events including the Five Star Conference and Expo and the American Legal & Financial Network Conference and Regional Trainings. Mr. Boylan is admitted to practice law in the States of California and Washington. Mr. Boylan has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

ATTORNEYS

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  • Matthew H. Aguirre is an Associate Attorney in the Firm’s Risk Management & Compliance Department. Prior to joining the Firm, Mr. Aguirre represented financial institutions in wrongful foreclosure actions throughout the state of California and assisted clients with compliance issues pertaining to evolving foreclosure regulations. After graduating from San Diego State University with a degree in Business Administration, he received his Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Mr. Aguirre is a member of the Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society, and is admitted to practice in the State of California.

  • William Attmore joined McCarthy & Holthus, LLP in June of 2012 as an Associate Attorney in the Texas office. He was admitted to practice law in the State of Texas in 2008, and was admitted to practice law in the State of Florida in 2003. He has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Philosophy from The University of Texas, San Antonio and a Juris Doctorate Degree from the Shepard Broad Law Center at Nova University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Mr. Attmore has been admitted to practice law before the United States District & Bankruptcy Courts for the Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of Texas. Mr. Attmore routinely practices in Texas State and Federal Courts representing secured lenders and financial institutions in litigation, foreclosure, and eviction law. Prior to joining the team at McCarthy & Holthus, LLP, Mr. Attmore practiced in the Litigation Division of a Dallas area law firm.

  • Priscilla Baker joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 and is an Associate Attorney at the Nevada office. She graduated from William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2014. While attending law school, she was on the Nevada Law Journal, serving as an Articles Editor. Ms. Baker also received the Boyd School of Law Alumni Chapter Student Life Award. After graduation, she was a law clerk for Judge Michael P. Villani with the Eighth Judicial District Court. Ms. Baker is admitted to practice law in the state of Nevada.

  • Thomas Beckom joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2014 and is an Associate Attorney at the Las Vegas office. Mr. Beckom obtained his bachelor’s degree in Music from Duquesne University in 2002 and a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction in 2009. He graduated from the William S. Boyd School of law in 2011. Prior to coming to McCarthy and Holthus Mr. Beckom represented individuals and businesses in consumer and business Bankruptcies under Chapters 7, 11, and 13. In addition, Mr. Beckom litigated in State and Federal Court where he received pretrial and trial experience relating to business and traditional torts. Mr. Beckom is licensed to practice law in the state of Nevada.

  • Megan Boyd is an Associate Attorney in the Firm’s Civil Litigation Department in San Diego, California. Ms. Boyd obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Missouri-Columbia and her JD from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in 2003. She was then admitted to both the California and Utah Bar. She has since been admitted in all of the California U.S. District Courts. Prior to re-joining the firm, Ms. Boyd was outside counsel for multiple national title insurance companies. She has also served on the Native American Lands Committee of the American Land Title Association and a public speaker on conducting real estate transactions on Native American land. Ms. Boyd has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Leticia Butler joined McCarthy & Holthus, LLP in 2015 and is an Associate Attorney at the firm's San Diego office. Mrs. Butler attended San Diego State University and obtained a Bachelor of Arts in English in 2003. After undergraduate studies, Mrs. Butler went on to obtain her Juris Doctorate from California Western School of Law in 2007. Later that year, Mrs. Butler was admitted to the State Bar of California. Prior to joining McCarthy & Holthus, Mrs. Butler practiced general civil litigation in business, real estate, employment, insurance, and class action matters. Additionally Mrs. Butler worked at McCarthy & Holthus from 2000 to 2007 while attending her undergraduate and law school programs. During that time, Mrs. Butler held several different positions, the last of which was as a law clerk in the Civil Litigation Department where she now practices. Ms. Butler has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Joshua Chappell joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2016 as an Associate Attorney at the Albuquerque office. Mr. Chappell has ten years of work experience in the legal field. Mr. Chappell earned an Associates' of Applied Science in Paralegal Studies from Central New Mexico Community College in April, 2007. Mr. Chappell graduated cum laude from the University of New Mexico with a bachelor of arts in Sociology and Psychology with a concentration in Pre-Law. Mr. Chappell later graduated from the UNM School of Law, cum laude, in May, 2015, and was sworn into the State Bar of New Mexico in September, 2015.

  • Michael Chen joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2013 and is an Associate Attorney at the Las Vegas office. Mr. Chen obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History from The University of California (“Cal”) in 1992. He graduated from the University of Arizona College of Law in 1996. Mr. Chen began his legal profession at the Clerk’s Office for the United States Bankruptcy Court, District of Nevada in 1998 and has since and solely been a practicing attorney in all aspects of mortgage default servicing (foreclosure, bankruptcy, evictions, title curative, etc.) for all of the principal mortgage banking/servicing entities in the industry. Mr. Chen’s main specialty is bankruptcy law, and is admitted to practice law in the states of Arizona (1997) and Nevada (2000).

  • Jeremy Clifford joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 and is an Associate Attorney in the Portland, Oregon office. Prior to entering law school Mr. Clifford obtained a Bachelor Degree in Finance from The University of Phoenix while working for a large mutual fund company. Mr. Clifford graduated from Lewis and Clark Law School in 2014. During law school he clerked for a local Portland attorney who specializes in long-term disability denials. After law school Mr. Clifford clerked for a local Portland law firm that specializes in construction defect litigation and insurance defense. Immediately prior to working at McCarthy and Holthus Mr. Clifford worked for a third-party servicer of class action lawsuits and mass torts. Mr. Clifford works in the bankruptcy practice group in the Portland, Oregon office of McCarthy and Holthus. He is admitted to practice law in the state of Oregon.

  • Carrie Cook is an Associate Attorney in the Albuquerque office. She joined McCarthy Holthus in 2016 after graduating from the University of New Mexico School of Law in 2015. Before law school, Ms. Cook obtained an LL.B. from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth.

  • Julie Corriveau is an associate in the San Diego, CA office. Ms. Corriveau has specialized in civil litigation since 1998. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of San Diego in 1995 and obtained her Juris Doctorate degree from Creighton University School of Law in 1998. While in law school, Ms. Corriveau received the CALI Award for Excellence in European Economic Community Law and was recognized as the Best Oral Advocate in Domestic Moot Court Competition. Ms. Corriveau attended and received certification from The Hague Academy of International Law in Den Haag, Netherlands. In addition to her litigation work Ms. Corriveau is a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for foster care children in San Diego County. Ms. Corriveau is admitted to practice before all the courts of the State of California as well as the United States District Court for the Southern, Central, Eastern and Northern Districts of California

  • Jennifer K. Cruseturner joined McCarthy Holthus in August of 2014 and is an associate in the firm’s Colorado office. Ms. Cruseturner brings to the firm her legal experience in bankruptcy, eviction, and foreclosure. Ms. Cruseturner graduated from Tulane University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a minor in Evolutionary Biology and then went on to graduate from Loyola University New Orleans, College of Law in 2009 with a Juris Doctor in Civil Law and certificates in Environmental Law as well as International Law. Ms. Cruseturner was employed during law school as a law clerk for the District Attorney in the Louisiana 22nd Judicial District. After law school, Ms. Cruseturner practiced law in the Louisiana 22nd Judicial District as a Public Defender. Ms. Cruseturner has also worked for a large consulting firm performing federally mandated reviews of foreclosure proceedings across the United States. Ms. Cruseturner is admitted to practice law in the State of Colorado and the Federal District of Colorado. Ms. Cruseturner is a member of the Colorado and Denver Bar Associations.

  • Brady Godbout is an Associate Attorney in the Firm’s Civil Litigation Department in Portland, OR. Mr. Godbout obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and obtained his JD from the Phoenix School of Law. During law school, he worked for several state and city municipalities including the Maricopa County Superior Court, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, and the City of Avondale Prosecutor’s Office. After graduating, Mr. Godbout worked for the Arizona Justice Project as a contract attorney. He is currently admitted to practice law in both Arizona and Oregon.

  • Eve Grina joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2016 as an Associate Attorney in the Colorado office. Ms. Grina has years of experience representing creditors in real estate law. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2007 and graduated from the College of William and Mary School of Law in the top ten percent of her class in 2011. Prior to transitioning into property law, she worked as an auditor in conjunction with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, reviewing large mortgage servicer's loss mitigation procedures for compliance with regulations.

  • Olga Groat joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2017 and is an Associate Attorney at the Portland office. She has legal experience with a business background. Ms. Groat obtained a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Finance from DePaul University in 2006 and graduated from the John Marshall Law School in 2011. As part of her legal practice, Ms. Groat litigated and represented clients in civil litigation matters, real estate transactions, debt restructuring, leasing, and general commercial and residential real estate related matters. Ms. Groat is admitted to practice law in the states of Oregon and Illinois.

  • Robert Brandon Hakari is an associate in the Civil Litigation department and works at the firm’s Oregon office. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from Texas A&M University in 2008 and his law degree from Michigan State University in 2011. While in law school, he worked as a clinician at MSU’s Housing Law Clinic and served as a judicial extern for the Honorable Stacey Jernigan of the United States Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of Texas. Mr. Hakari has been a member of the Oregon bar since 2011, and is a licensed Patent Attorney. Mr. Hakari has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking him at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Seth M. Harris is an associate in the Civil Litigation Department. Prior to receiving his law degree, Mr. Harris graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from California State University San Marcos in 2004. He subsequently obtained his Juris Doctorate from Whittier Law School in 2007; graduating Cum Laude. Admitted to the California bar in 2007, Mr. Harris was then admitted in the Southern, Central and Northern Districts of California of the U.S. District Court. While attending Whittier Law School, Mr. Harris was a member of the Whittier Law Review and was awarded the CALI Award of Excellence in Contracts. Through his handling of various complex litigation and appeals, Mr. Harris has developed specialties in eminent domain and receivership actions. Mr. Harris was listed on the 2015 Super Lawyers list of Rising Stars and recognized for his excellence in practice. Mr. Harris has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Ashley B. Hennessee is an associate attorney with McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. She has been practicing law in California since 2008 and representing creditors and foreclosure trustees since 2009. Ashley graduated from Thomas Jefferson School of Law, with a Certificate in Global Legal Studies, in 2008. Her undergraduate degree is from the University of North Alabama, where she obtained a BA in Finance and a BS in Political Science in 2005. Ashley has been a member of the California Bar since 2008, a member of the Washington Bar since 2015 and is admitted to all federal district courts within those jurisdictions. She is a member of the San Diego County Bar Association and has been selected as a San Diego Rising Star by Super Lawyers, for the years 2015 and 2016. Ashley’s areas of practice include financial institution representation throughout all of California, including plaintiff and defense litigation on claims of breach of contract, fraud misrepresentation, leases, foreclosures and creditor rights in state and federal courts as well as mediation forums; creditor representation in bankruptcy, collection, replevin and probate actions; legal compliance and risk analysis reviews for California servicers, lenders and foreclosure trustees; and representation in real property title curative actions including land use, mechanic’s liens, imminent domain, adverse possession, encroachments, easements, equitable subrogation, slander of title and monitoring title claims. Ms. Hennessee has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • ​ Jason Hoggard joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 and is an Associate Attorney at the Albuquerque office. He has legal experience with a business background. Mr. Hoggard obtained a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration from the University of Nevada Las Vegas in 1994. He graduated from the University Of Arizona College Of Law in 1997. As part of his legal practice, Mr. Hoggard worked an Attorney for the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Disaster Assistance supervising closing transactions for business and home disaster loans. As a corporate contract attorney Mr. Hoggard assisted with residential mortgage back securities litigation which included legal/qualitative analysis of the RMBS process. Mr. Hoggard is admitted to practice law in the state of New Mexico.

  • Sammy Hooda joined McCarthy Holthus in 2017 and is an Associate Attorney in the Dallas, Texas office. He has over 7 years of extensive litigation experience. Mr. Hooda received a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the University of North Texas in 2006. He graduated as the Valedictorian from Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Texas Southern University in 2009. During his last semester in law school, Mr. Hooda served as a judicial extern to the Honorable Jeff Bohm, United States Bankruptcy Judge, Southern District of Texas. Prior to joining M&H, Mr. Hooda was a senior litigation attorney at Buckley Madole, P.C., where he managed the firm's consumer finance litigation portfolio. Mr. Hooda, has tried and obtained 3 jury verdicts in favor of creditor-clients, and has successfully argued numerous bench trials. He also routinely handles appellate cases in state and federal courts, in Texas. Mr. Hooda is admitted to practice law in the state of Texas, and admitted in all the Federal District Courts in Texas, as well as the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.

  • Merdaud Jafarnia is a member in the Bankruptcy Department at McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. After graduating from University of California, Los Angeles where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science, he earned his Juris Doctorate from Southwestern School of Law in 2001. In law school, Merdaud externed for Chief Judge of the Central District Court, the Honorable Judge Hatter, and for the Honorable Judge Goldberg in the US Bankruptcy Court. After law school, Merdaud practiced Intellectual Property and Civil Litigation. Prior to joining McCarthy & Holthus, Merdaud worked as a staff attorney for the 9th Circuit Bankruptcy Appellate Panel in Pasadena and the Los Angeles Office of hearing Appeals for the Social Security Administration. Merdaud is admitted to practice law in state of California. Mr. Jafarnia has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Bryan Kidder joined the firm's Portland, Oregon office as an Associate Attorney in 2017. He graduated from the University of Washington in 2007 with a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science. He then studied law at the University of Houston Law Center and obtained his J.D. in 2010. Mr. Kidder has extensive practical experience in bankruptcy and as a civil litigator. He is licensed to practice in Oregon and Washington State.

  • Stephen Kowal joined McCarthy & Holthus as an associate attorney in their New Mexico office in 2015. He obtained his BS in Business at San Jose State University in California, where he was born and raised. Stephen graduated with his JD from Regent University School of Law in Virginia. He has several years' experience representing national banks and creditors in a variety of areas, including foreclosure, collection, bankruptcy and litigation. He loves his wife and family and enjoys building models.

  • Rebecca Lang is the Firm’s Eviction Department Managing Attorney. Ms. Lang started with the firm in 2009 as an associate in the Civil Litigation and Eviction departments; she has also worked in our Bankruptcy department. Ms. Lang graduated from California State University Long Beach, cum laude, with a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. She then attended California Western School of Law, where she earned her Juris Doctorate in December of 2006. Prior to working at McCarthy & Holthus, Ms. Lang practiced in the areas of Construction Defect, General Civil Litigation, Evictions, and Bankruptcy. Ms. Lang was admitted to practice law in the State of California June 1, 2007. Ms. Lang has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Robert Larson joined McCarthy & Holthus in 2015 as an associate attorney in the firm’s Seattle office. Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Rob earned his B.A. in Criminal Justice from Washington State University in 2007 and his J.D. from Seattle University in 2012. Rob specializes in mediation and civil litigation with McCarthy & Holthus.

  • Matthew B. Learned is an associate in the Civil Litigation Department at McCarthy Holthus, LLP. He received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2002. He subsequently received his MBA from San Diego State University and his Juris Doctorate from California Western School of Law. While at California Western, Mr. Learned became a member of the Pro Bono Honors Society for his volunteer work with the California Innocence Project. Prior to becoming an associate at McCarthy & Holthus, his strong business sense led him to intern with REEF and work as in house counsel for an independent record label. Mr. Learned is admitted to practice law in all Central, Eastern, Northern and Southern District Courts in the state of California. Mr. Learned has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Nancy Lee joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 and is an associate in the Civil Litigation Department at the San Diego office. Mrs. Lee received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in English from the University of California, Los Angeles. While attending Loyola Law School, Mrs. Lee externed for a bankruptcy judge, volunteered at the Public Counsel Law Center’s Debtor Assistance Project Division, and interned in the Business and Tax Section of the California Department of Justice. After graduating from law school, Mrs. Lee practiced at a bankruptcy firm in downtown Long Beach, a bankruptcy litigation firm in West Los Angeles, and a multi-state default services law firm in Orange County. Mrs. Lee is admitted to the State Bar of California and the United States District Court for all districts of California.

  • Steven J. Lucero joined McCarthy & Holthus, LLP in August 2014 and is an Associate Attorney in the New Mexico office. Mr. Lucero obtained his Bachelors of Science Degree in Physics and Applied Mathematics from the University of New Mexico in 2006, and his J.D. from the University of New Mexico, School of Law, in 2010. Mr. Lucero worked in the area of judicial foreclosure and evictions prior to joining the firm. Mr. Lucero is admitted to practice in the State and Federal courts of New Mexico.

  • Christopher A. Luhrs is an associate in the firm’s Seattle, WA office and was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. Mr. Luhrs earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance from the University of Colorado. Following his undergraduate studies, Mr. Luhrs attended Gonzaga University where he obtained his JD and MBA in 2010. Mr. Luhrs has a background in real estate transactions and tax, and specializes in civil litigation and mediation with McCarthy & Holthus.

  • Umair Malik joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2014 and is an Associate Attorney at the Albuquerque office. He has legal experience with a business background. Mr. Malik obtained a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Accounting from Eastern Michigan University in 2007. He graduated from Michigan State University College of Law in 2010 with a Corporate Law concentration. As part of his legal practice in Illinois, Mr. Malik represented purchasers of real estate property in closing transactions. His legal work ultimately led him to accepting a position at the New Mexico Public Defender’s Office in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he received courtroom experience at the Second Judicial District Court. Mr. Malik is admitted to practice law in the states of New Mexico and Illinois.

  • Joseph McCormick is an associate in the firm’s Washington office. Joseph was born in Connecticut and attended the University of South Florida in Tampa, where he earned a BA in Education and an MA in History. In 2010, he received his Juris Doctor from Stetson University College of Law in Florida, where he practiced in the areas of real estate, contract and foreclosure litigation, and bankruptcy for nearly five years before coming to Seattle this past March. He is admitted in the States of Washington.

  • Kristin McDonald is an Associate Attorney in the Firm’s Eviction Department in Scottsdale, Arizona. In addition, Kristin handles Chapter 11 Bankruptcy matters. Kristin is a graduate of the Roger Williams School of Law located in Bristol, Rhode Island. Focusing her practice in the area of creditors’ rights, Kristin has represented lenders throughout Arizona state, federal, appellate, and bankruptcy courts. Kristin is a member of the bankruptcy and real property sections of the State Bar of Arizona. She is admitted to practice in the State of Arizona, District Court of Arizona, and 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

  • Joseph Ward McIntosh is a Senior Associate Attorney in the firm’s Washington office. Joe grew up in Seattle, attended college at Washington State University, and law school at Willamette University in Oregon. He was admitted to practice law in the state of Washington in 2007, and has practiced creditor’s and real property law exclusively since that time. Joe is admitted to practice in the U.S. District Courts in Washington and the 9th Circuit.

  • Casey Pence is the Managing Attorney for the Firm’s Oregon Office. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Portland State University and her J.D. from Northwestern School of Law at Lewis and Clark, where she graduated as a Business Roundtable Scholar, Cornelius Honor Society Member, and the Managing Editor of Animal Law. Prior to joining the Firm, she worked as a judicial clerk for the Honorable Stephen S. Trott on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals; as a partner at Moffatt Thomas in Boise, Idaho; and as a Supervising Attorney in Portland, Oregon law firm. Mrs. Pence joined the Firm in 2012, and works on foreclosure, bankruptcy, eviction and commercial litigation cases. She is currently a member of the Oregon State Bar. Mr. Pence has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Kelly M. Raftery is an Associate Attorney in the Bankruptcy Department at McCarthy & Holthus, LLP in the San Diego office. Ms. Raftery has been representing secured creditors in all chapters of bankruptcy since joining the firm in 2008, and currently manages a team that concentrates Chapter 11 representation. Ms. Raftery has extensive experience representing creditors in court, and reviewing confirmed plans nationwide for loan compliance and default management. Ms. Raftery graduated from The American University in 2003 with a BA in Political Science, and obtained her Juris Doctorate from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in 2006. Ms. Raftery also studied Comparative Constitutional Law under Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in the summer of 2004. Ms. Raftery is admitted to practice law in the state of California including the Southern, Central, Eastern, and Northern Districts of California of the United States District Court. Ms. Raftery has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Melissa Robbins Coutts is the Firm’s Civil Litigation Managing Attorney, and practices in the San Diego office. She attended Northern Arizona University, where she obtained a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice in 2003. Ms. Coutts then graduated Cum Laude from California Western School of Law in 2006. While at California Western, she was a member of Law Review and was published in the California Western International Law Journal. Before joining the firm, she clerked for the Hon. Ruben B. Brooks, Hon. Anthony J. Battaglia, and Hon. Larry A. Burns of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California. Ms. Coutts is admitted to practice in all state and federal in California and Arizona, as well as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. She has extensive experience handling cases on appeal in state and federal appellate courts, and has been attorney of record in multiple published appellate decisions. Ms. Coutts was selected as a San Diego Super Lawyers Rising Star in 2015 and 2016. Ms. Coutts has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Jennifer Rogers joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 and is an Associate Attorney at the Centennial, Colorado office. Her legal career has focused on creditors rights, real estate and mortgage finance related to commercial and residential lending. She received her undergraduate and master's degree from the University of Louisiana in 1991 and 1996 respectively. She earned her law degree from the University of Denver in 2002. She is a member of the Colorado Bar Association, the Colorado Women's Bar Association and is a member and board member of the Colorado Creditors Bar Association.

  • Jade Rotonda joined McCarty and Holthus in 2015 as an Associate Attorney at the Albuquerque office. She has had prior legal experience in creditor rights. A Regent’s Scholar at the University of New Mexico, she received her Bachelor degree in Special Education and Elementary Education in 2005, and her Master of Arts in Special Education in 2007. Ms. Rotonda graduated from the University Of New Mexico School Of Law in 2011. She is licensed to practice in New Mexico and Tesuque Tribal Court.

  • Catherine Sanchez joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2014 and is an Associate Attorney at the Albuquerque office. She has owned her firm since 2001 with background in volume retail, medical and commercial debt collection. Ms. Sanchez obtained a Bachelor Degree with emphasis in history from the University of New Mexico. Additionally, Ms. Sanchez obtained a Master’s in Public Administration and a Law Degree from the University of New Mexico. Ms. Sanchez has legal experience in personal injury and has been a panelist on the NM Medical Review since 2001. Currently, Ms. Sanchez is a member of the newly formed Creditor’s Bar Association of New Mexico. Mr. Sanchez is admitted to practice law in the state of New Mexico.

  • Michael Scott joined McCarthy & Holthus in 2015, and is an Associate Attorney at the Portland OR office. He has significant experience in bankruptcy and debtor-creditor law, and he has represented creditors and debtors in federal bankruptcy courts and state courts. He also has experience in the areas of foreclosure, real estate and business transactions. Mr. Scott graduated from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College in Portland OR in 1997, and he previously obtained his Bachelor Degree from Miami University in Oxford, OH. ​Mr. Scott is admitted to practice law in the states of Oregon and Washington.

  • Kathy Shakibi joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 as a litigation attorney based in the Washington office. Kathy graduated from Whittier Law School cum laude and since 2005 has been exclusively representing financial institutions and their service providers in mortgage related and default services matters. Kathy brings years of experience as a litigator and house-counsel for a multi-state default services law firm. Kathy is a regular contributor to default services publications and has spoken on foreclosure topics at default servicing industry events. Kathy is a member of the state bars of California and Washington.

  • Andreanna C. Smith is an associate attorney in the Civil Litigation department in the Oregon office. She graduated from Grand Canyon University summa cum laude in 2005 with a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature. Ms. Smith spent several years as a managing editor of a magazine in Scottsdale, Arizona before receiving her law degree from Phoenix School of Law in 2011. In law school, she contributed to and was an executive editor of the PSL Law Review and was a Rule 38 intern at the Surprise City Prosecutor’s Office. She also served as the Vice President of the Federalist Society. Ms. Smith was admitted to practice in Arizona in 2012 and in Oregon in 2013. Prior to joining the firm, she clerked for the Arizona Attorney General’s Office in the Civil Rights department, reviewing discrimination claims in the areas of employment, public accommodation, and housing.

  • Matthew Stamper has been a member of the Washington State Bar Association since 2013. He joined McCarthy and Holthus at their Seattle office in 2014 as a Civil Litigation Attorney with a focus on foreclosure mediations. Mr. Stamper received his Juris Doctorate from Pace Law School with a Certificate in Environmental Law. Matthew began his practice in the Bankruptcy Department at a Seattle-based Creditor’s Rights law firm prior to coming on board with McCarthy and Holthus the following year. He is admitted to practice law in the state and federal districts of Washington.

  • B. W. Stone joined McCarthy & Holthus in 2015 and is an Associate Attorney in the Albuquerque office. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1996 and flew fighters for the Navy during ten years on active duty. He then continued flying for the Naval Reserve while employed as a corporate and test pilot for a business-jet manufacturer. Mr. Stone enrolled at the University Of New Mexico School Of Law in 2012. His legal education focused primarily on federal tax practice and property and oil-and-gas law, with clinical experience in trial and appellate litigation. He graduated summa cum laude and practiced criminal defense before joining McCarthy & Holthus. He is admitted to practice before the state courts in New Mexico, the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico, and the U.S. Tax Court.

  • David M. Swartley is an Associate Attorney in Boise, Idaho. Mr. Swartley obtained his Bachelor Degree in History from the University of Puget Sound and his JD from the University of Idaho College of Law. Mr. Swartley is an AV-rated attorney with Martindale Hubbell with over seventeen years of private practice experience in civil litigation, judicial and non-judicial foreclosures, unlawful detainers, medical malpractice defense, and representing creditors in bankruptcy. Mr. Swartley acts as a Panel Chairman for the Idaho State Board of Medicine on Prelitigation Screening Panels and acts as legal counsel on behalf of guardians ad-litem on CASA matters. Mr. Swartley has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Cruz Turcott joined McCarthy Holthus in 2016 and he is an Associate Attorney at the Portland office. Mr. Turcott obtained a B.A. in Theater from The New School/Eugene Lang College in 2006, and a J.D. from Lewis & Clark Law School in 2016. During law school Mr. Turcott was a judicial intern for Judge Ortega of the Oregon Court of Appeals, and an associate editor for the Animal Law Review. He was also a law clerk for Fred Meyer's Legal Department, focusing on commercial real estate transactions, and for his law school's Legal Clinic, focusing on representing debtors in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. Prior to law school he worked in hotel management and co-founded a non-profit theater company, both in in New York City. Mr. Turcott is admitted to practice law in Oregon.

  • Yoshie Valadez joined McCarthy and Holthus, LLP in 2016 as an Associate Attorney in the Texas office. She was admitted to practice law in the State of California in 2001, Massachusetts in 2007, and Texas in 2014. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Cultural Anthropology from The University of Arizona and a Juris Doctorate Degree from Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco, California. Ms. Valadez has been admitted to practice law before the United States District & Bankruptcy Courts for the all Districts in Texas, all Districts in California, the District of Massachusetts and the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Ms. Valadez’s practice is focused on representing secured lenders and financial institutions in bankruptcy and law. Prior to joining the team at McCarthy & Holthus, LLP, Ms. Valadez practiced bankruptcy for a Boston area firm.

  • Karen Weaver joined McCarthy & Holthus in 2015 as the managing attorney for the firm's New Mexico office. Ms. Weaver graduated from the University of New Mexico Magna cum Laude in 1988. She received an academic scholarship to California Western School of Law, graduating in 1990. She is admitted to the bar in California and New Mexico. She was previously the chair of the Bankruptcy Section for the State Bar of New Mexico. Ms. Weaver has extensive civil litigation experience, including trials and appellate work. She previously managed other New Mexico foreclosure firms and managed other foreclosure firms' litigation departments. Ms. Weaver has extensive bankruptcy, title curative and general real estate practice experience.

  • Jack Walter Withem joined McCarthy and Holthus in 2015 as an associate attorney in the Albuquerque office. Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Withem was an associate attorney at an insurance defense litigation firm in Albuquerque. Mr. Withem graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.B.A. in Finance (2004) and a B.A. in Government (2003). Mr. Withem worked as a claims adjuster and client service manager in the insurance industry for over seven years before attending law school. In 2014, Mr. Withem graduated magna cum laude from the Texas Tech University School of Law. During law school, Mr. Withem served on the Executive Board of the Law Review as Lead Articles Editor. He was also recognized as an Outstanding Writer for the Texas Bank Lawyer publication. He earned the CALI Award for excellent achievement in the study of Contracts and in the study of Legal Writing. He earned the Distinction Award in the study of Business Entities.

  • Jennifer Wong is an Associate in the Bankruptcy Department at McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. After graduating from the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Economics, she received her Juris Doctorate from California Western School of Law in 2006. While attending California Western, Ms. Wong clerked for the Employee Rights Center where she assisted employees with wage disputes and unemployment insurance matters. She was inducted to California Western’s Pro Bono Honors Program in 2004. In December 2009, Ms. Wong was elected to serve on the Board of Directors for the San Diego Bankruptcy Forum. She was elected to serve as Secretary of the Forum in January 2010. Ms. Wong is admitted to practice law in the state of California. Ms. Wong has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Courtney Wright joined McCarthy & Holthus in 2015 and is an associate attorney in the Firm’s Colorado office. Ms. Wright graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in 2008. She then obtained her Juris Doctorate from Florida International University College of Law in 2011. Prior to joining McCarthy & Holthus, Ms. Wright practiced as compliance counsel for a national mortgage lender and then for a Colorado creditors rights firm in the areas of foreclosure and post foreclosure evictions. Ms. Wright is admitted to practice law in both Florida and Colorado.

  • Kristin A. Zilberstein is a senior associate in the Bankruptcy Department at McCarthy & Holthus, LLP. Ms. Zilberstein obtained a Bachelor Degree from the University of California, San Diego in Economics with an emphasis in Business and an emphasis in the Environment in 1995. She graduated from California Western School of Law in 1998 and passed the bar that same year. Her career began in general liability insurance defense where she gained extensive experience handling all aspects of Civil Litigation including jury trials. Ms. Zilberstein is admitted to practice law in the state of California including the Southern, Central, Eastern, and Northern districts of California of the United States District Court. Additionally, she is licensed to practice in the state of Washington, including District Courts, as well as the District Court of Nebraska. Ms. Zilberstein is a frequent expert panelist for industry and local engagements, including several ALFN bankruptcy webinars, as well as an Orange County Bankruptcy Forum CLE. Ms. Zilberstein has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale Hubbell, ranking her at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.

  • Cheyenne M. Zokaie was admitted to practice law in the State of Texas in 2014 and the state of California in 2017. Mr. Zokaie obtained a Bachelor Degree in History and Political Science with honors from the University of Texas in Arlington and a Juris Doctorate Degree from Thomas Jefferson School of Law while earning a Deans Scholarship Award. Additionally, Mr. Zokaie has been admitted to practice law before the United States District and Bankruptcy Courts for the Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of Texas. Mr. Zokaie's primary practice areas include secured creditor representation, probate, litigation, eviction, and foreclosure. Prior to joining McCarthy Holthus, Mr. Zokaie practiced in the Government Affairs/Litigation division of a Dallas are aviation company.

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