Mr. Quintanilla is the President of the Firm which he established in 2014, after spending nearly 20 years with the former law firm of Green, de Bortnowsky & Quintanilla. Mr. Quintanilla was admitted to the State Bar of California in 1992 and since then he has practiced exclusively in the area of municipal law and its related fields, including land use, planning, real estate, environmental compliance, affordable housing, public works projects, mobile home parks, rent control, labor, employment, municipal solid waste, records management, code enforcement, tax measures, elections, conflicts of interest, ethics, the Ralph M. Brown Act and the Public Records Act.
Currently, Mr. Quintanilla serves as the City Attorney and City Prosecutor for the City of Rancho Mirage and Interim City Attorney for City of Moreno Valley. Mr. Quintanilla also serves as General Legal Counsel for the Rancho Mirage Housing Authority and the Orange County, Murrieta Valley, Palm Springs and Temecula Public Cemetery Districts. In addition, Mr. Quintanilla serves as General Counsel for several non-profit organizations, including the Rancho Mirage Public Library & Observatory Foundation, Rancho Mirage Writers Festival and Palm Springs Modernism Week.
Mr. Quintanilla is the author of a feature article on the historic development of the Brown Act published in “Western Cities” magazine by the League of California Cities. He has prepared several comprehensive guides suitable for use by public officials regarding state ethics laws, the Brown Act, and the Mobilehome Residency Law. Local public agencies and community organizations frequently invite him to speak on issues such as open and public meetings, disclosure of public records, government ethics, conflicts of interest, general plans, constitutional law, land use proceedings, code enforcement, and mobile home park regulations.
Mr. Quintanilla has also been a frequent contributor to the editorial page of the Coachella Valley’s Desert Sun newspaper and has prepared several commentaries for the Desert Sun on topics ranging from ethics in government to effective public participation in the local political process. The major news publications in the Coachella Valley such as The Desert Sun Newspaper, the Public Record, the Business Press, and La Prensa Hispana Newspaper, have all recognized Mr. Quintanilla for his professional accomplishments and his many contributions to the community. In addition, Mr. Quintanilla has repeatedly been recognized by Palm Springs Life magazine as one of the “Top Lawyers” in the Coachella Valley, and he has been featured by Palm Springs Life (twice) as a major “Visionary” in the Coachella Valley.
Mr. Quintanilla’s educational background includes a J.D. from the UCLA School of Law, an M.A. in Urban Planning from the UCLA School of Architecture and Urban Planning, and a B.A. in Environmental Policy from the UCLA Geography Department from which he graduated magna cum laude and with numerous other academic honors.
Mr. Quintanilla is a member of the State Bar of California and is admitted to practice before all the courts of the State of California, the United States District Court for the Central District of California and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Lisa Weaver-Nowak joined the Firm in 2018. Lisa serves as Deputy City Attorney/City Prosecutor for the City of Rancho Mirage and Interim Deputy City Attorney/City Prosecutor for the City of Moreno Valley. Lisa works closely with Code Compliance staff on seeking compliance from code violators in the most cost-effective and efficient manner in the context of providing adequate due process. Lisa serves as Code Compliance’s lead counsel in all administrative, civil and criminal Code Compliance cases, which includes representing the cities during administrative hearings, public nuisance abatement court proceedings, and criminal arraignment hearings. Lisa’s role in Code Compliance also includes assisting staff with the development and preparation of various policies and procedures, drafting requisite resolutions, ordinances, and staff reports, and providing routine legal advice on administering the cities’ respective Code Compliance programs.
Lisa is the Firm’s lead attorney on all matters pertaining to requests for public records under the Public Records Act, and responding to subpoenas for records and other discovery requests. Moreover, Lisa is also the Firm’s primary attorney who oversees the preparation and approval of a large volume of agreements related to the Firm’s non-profit clients. For instance, Lisa drafts numerous agreements for speakers, presenters, vendors, consultants, service providers, equipment purchases, employees, etc. every year for the annual and internationally renowned Rancho Mirage Writers Festival and Palm Springs Modernism Week events.
Lisa received her J.D. in 2015 from California Western School of Law, located in San Diego, California. Prior to joining the Firm, Lisa worked as a Law Clerk for the Chula Vista City Attorney’s Office and the San Diego City Attorney’s Office. In both Chula Vista and San Diego, Lisa researched a variety of municipal legal issues, with a focus on accessibility and reasonable accommodation/access issues related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and environmental issues related to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Lisa received a B.A. in political science and a B.A. in English from the University of California, Irvine in 2011.
Colin Kirkpatrick joined the Firm in 2015. Colin’s primary focus is land use and planning, subdivision law, environmental review, real estate transactions, and public works construction contracts. Colin works closely with the Firm’s client-cities’ planning, public works and engineering departments and divisions preparing complex conditions of approval and mitigation measures associated with various land use entitlements. Colin also drafts numerous development-related agreements, including without limitation, statutory development agreements, subdivision improvement agreements, indemnification agreements, easement agreements, and restrictive covenants. Colin also routinely drafts ordinances, resolutions, policies, procedures, and staff reports regarding a variety of issues and topics for Planning Commission and City Council agenda packets.
Colin serves as Assistant City Attorney for the City of Rancho Mirage and Assistant General Counsel of its affiliated agencies. Colin also serves as Interim Deputy City Attorney for the City of Moreno Valley and Assistant General Counsel for the Southern Coachella Valley Community Services District. In his capacity as general legal counsel, Colin has become well versed with providing sound and practicable advice regarding the application of the open meeting requirements of the Ralph M. Brown Act, the conflict of interest rules of the Political Reform Act and the FPPC Regulations, and the public’s inspection rights under the Public Records Act. In addition to the above, Colin provides general legal advice to the Boards of Directors of the Firm’s two major non-profit clients – Rancho Mirage Writers Festival and Palm Springs Modernism Week.
During law school, Colin worked on an international tax treatise published by his law school and LexisNexis. He also served on the Federal Habeas Corpus Team for the California Department of Justice. While at the Department of Justice, Colin wrote numerous briefs on a wide variety of constitutional issues under review by the Federal District Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Immediately after law school, Colin worked as a legal intern for KK Properties, a private real estate development firm, where he assisted with matters pertaining to land use planning and development.
Colin received his J.D. in 2013 from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California, and a B.A. in English in from the University of California at Riverside in 2008.
Michael Cobden joined the Firm in 2020. Michael currently serves as Interim Assistant City Attorney for the City of Moreno Valley and Senior Deputy City Attorney for the City of Rancho Mirage. Michael’s primary duties include managing the Firm’s civil and criminal litigation caseload, coordinating the preparation of administrative records, overseeing all discovery, serving as liaison to special counsel, monitoring Government Tort claims and advising Code Compliance with respect to conducting thorough investigations, developing effective enforcement strategies, and pursuing cost-effective and time-efficient prosecution. Due to Michael’s extensive experience in the area of public safety, he has been designated the lead attorney who handles most matters for Police, Fire and Code Compliance. In addition to the above, Michael also has a solid background in the area of public finance which contributes to his unique ability to provide timely and creative legal advice and guidance on a wide array of tax, fee, and revenue issues under Propositions 218 and 26.
Prior to joining the Firm, Michael has served as City Prosecutor for the City of Santa Monica, Town Attorney for the Town of Yountville, CA, a staff attorney for the California Supreme Court and General Legal Counsel for fire and water districts throughout California. In connection with providing general legal services to cities and special districts for over 10 years, Michael represented a multitude of public agencies in both state and federal courts on matters such as short-term rental regulation, sex offender residency restrictions, public finance, and LAFCo annexation; he has extensive experience with handling misdemeanor criminal prosecutions involving jury trials, law and motion hearings and appeals. In addition to practicing, Michael taught law as an Adjunct Professor of Legal Writing and Oral Advocacy at McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, CA.
Michael received his J.D.in 2008 from U.C. Hastings College of Law, with a Concentration in Criminal Law and Theory. During law school, Michael served as a Law Clerk for the First District Appellate Project in San Francisco, a Legal Intern for the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, and a Judicial Extern to the Presiding Justice of the California Court of Appeal in Los Angeles. Michael received his BA with a Major in Classics and a Commendation for Academic Excellence from Reed College in 1999.
Daniel Trevino joined the Firm in 2017 as a Law Clerk, while enrolled as a Cal Western law student. After completing Law School, Daniel became an Associate Attorney for the Firm in January 2021.
Daniel currently serves as Deputy City Attorney and Interim Deputy City Attorney for the cities of Rancho Mirage and Moreno Valley, respectively. Daniel’s experience includes extensive research on state and federal legislation, laws and administrative regulations and case law pertaining to a wide range of legal issues affecting public agencies. Daniel also provides routine legal advice and guidance regarding the state’s complex conflicts of interest laws and regulations as set forth in the Political Reform Act and the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) regulations, the state’s open meetings laws as set forth in the Ralph M. Brown Act and the public’s right to public records as set forth in the California Public Records Act.
Prior to joining the Firm, Daniel worked as an intern for the City Manager of the City of Rancho Mirage. As an intern, Daniel often interacted with elected and appointed officials and members of the public, and he frequently made public presentations at City Council meetings. Daniel also interned with the Greater Palm Springs Convention & Visitors Bureau prior to entering Law School. Daniel’s intern experiences clearly cemented his interest in a career in public service and motivated him to pursue a career as a public sector attorney.
Daniel received his J.D. in 2019 from California Western School of Law in San Diego. During Law School, Daniel was an active member of the Law Students Bar Association and a recipient of a Diversity Scholarship and a Certificate of Distinction. Daniel received his B.A. in Political Science and Administrative Studies from the University of California, Riverside in 2015.
Gulan Tahir joined the Firm in 2021. Gulan serves as Deputy City Attorney for the City of Rancho Mirage and Interim Deputy City Attorney for the City of Moreno Valley.
Gulan is part of the Firm’s civil litigation team, working primarily on civil litigation matters pending in state and federal courts, pre-trial discovery, and the preparation of administrative records. Gulan also provides legal advice and services to the City Council, City staff, and related City entities.
Prior to joining the Firm, Gulan was an associate attorney at a private law firm in San Diego. While there, Gulan’s practice included business matters, real estate transactions, and litigation. Gulan represented clients in breach of contract disputes, residential real estate disputes, and general civil litigation matters.
Gulan received her J.D. from California Western School of Law. While in law school, she interned with the California Department of Business Oversight’s Enforcement Division where she assisted in the enforcement of state securities, lending, and other business statutes and regulations. She also worked as a volunteer mediator in the San Diego County Small Claims Court providing mediation services to small claims litigants. Prior to attending law school, Gulan studied political science at the University of California, Riverside, where she received her B.A. degree.