Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP is pleased to announce that Carley Roberts and Prentiss Willson, nationally recognized for their leadership in California and multistate tax matters, have joined the firm’s State and Local Tax Practice (SALT) in Sacramento. Ms. Roberts (a partner as of February 9) and Mr. Willson (of counsel, effective March 1) are joining Sutherland’s other Sacramento-based lawyers – former CalTax Vice President and General Counsel Michele Pielsticker and leading property tax adviser Doug Mo, both of whom joined Sutherland SALT last year.

“We are thrilled Carley and Prentiss have joined us.  They are among the best state tax lawyers in the country and bring a wealth of California experience to Sutherland’s SALT practice,” said Sutherland Managing Partner Mark D. Wasserman.  “Our SALT practice has experienced explosive growth over the past seven years, and growing our Sacramento office underscores our commitment to providing the highest quality service to our clients for all of their state tax issues across the U.S.”

Prior to joining Sutherland, Ms. Roberts was a Partner with Morrison & Foerster LLP where she has spent her entire legal career working with the state and local tax group.  She is a leading California tax litigator and has developed a significant practice handling cases involving many of California’s most critical SALT issues, including some of the most important corporate income and sales/use tax cases in litigation and on appeal.  Ms. Roberts is the immediate past chair of the Taxation Section of the California State Bar and has a prominent role in organizing the premier California state tax meeting – the California Tax Policy Conference.  Her practice at Sutherland will continue to focus on controversies and litigation involving multistate income and sales/use taxes.

Mr. Willson has 41 years of experience as a state and local tax lawyer and is widely recognized as the dean of California taxation.  Mr. Willson has been involved in approximately a dozen state and local tax cases at the U.S. Supreme Court, and has represented hundreds of taxpayers in disputes around the country and in California.  He began his career at Morrison & Foerster LLP, where at various times he was managing partner of the San Francisco office, chair of the firm’s tax department, and chair of the firm’s state and local tax group.  In 1998, he moved to Ernst & Young LLP as Partner and National Director of State and Local Tax.  Most recently, Mr. Willson has had his own law practice advising clients across the country.

“Carley and Prentiss are nationally recognized for their California tax expertise – a critical jurisdiction for state and local tax. Their knowledge and experience working with California tax authorities will provide our clients with a tremendous resource,” said Jerome B. Libin, chair of Sutherland’s Tax Practice Group. “This addition is a major step in our strategic plan for growth in California.”

Sutherland’s SALT practice is one of the premier state and local tax law practices in the country, with 29 lawyers representing more than 25 of the Fortune 100 and numerous other clients that are recognized leaders in their respective sectors.


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