I was born and raised in Santa Ana, California. I earned a B.A. in Economics from UC Riverside, graduated from Loyola University of Los Angeles School of Law in 1974 and was admitted as an Attorney and Counselor at Law by the State Bar of California in December, 1974. I received a Master of Business Taxation degree from the University of Southern California School of Accounting in 1981 and have been a Certified Specialist in Taxation Law continuously since 1984.
In the 1970’s, I worked as a tax attorney in the federal, state and foreign tax departments of Atlantic Richfield Company and as Tax Director of Thrifty Corporation, where my duties included preparation of the federal and California income tax returns for the parent company and its consolidated subsidiaries, which operated over 500 drugstore locations in California and the western United States. I moved to Bakersfield in 1980 to be an associate attorney with Rudnick and Arrache. In 1982, I left the firm and have been a sole practitioner since then.
My practice emphasizes general taxation issues, tax controversies and litigation, estate planning, real estate and business transactions. In addition to numerous federal and state administrative tax proceedings, I have represented the taxpayer in over 100 cases in United States Tax Court and United States District Court.
I have been married for 43 years to Susie Mears, who is a CPA and retired as Finance Director of the City of Ojai. My daughter, Julia Mears, is the Residential Academic Success Specialist at UC Berkley and my son, Nick Mears, is a lawyer and partner at LeBeau • Thelen, specializing in real estate and business transactions. I am the proud “Papa” of Colton Michael Mears.