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2017 BEST Company to Do Business with in Napa County: Dickenson Peatman & Fogarty

Author: Petter Westby & Cerrissa Kim
June, 2017 Issue

“We are collectively invested and committed to the communities we serve.”—Carol Ritter


For the fourth time over the past six years, Dickenson Peatman & Fogarty (DP&F), a Napa County law firm, has earned top honors as the Best Business in Napa County. DP&F has been providing legal representation to clients primarily in the North Bay, but also throughout California, the United States, and internationally for the past 52 years. DP&F is the largest North Bay full-service law firm and provides legal services and expertise in the practice areas of: business and corporate dealings; real property transactions; intellectual property; land use; alcohol beverage law; litigation; geographical indications; water law; wine law; and labor and employment.

So what exactly is it that makes DP&F stand out year after year in the NorthBay biz annual readers poll for the best business in Napa County? As prominently noted on their website: “Beyond being a first-class full-service law firm, the attorneys at DP&F take their involvement and contribution to their communities as seriously as they do the practice of law. Their attorneys and staff have a long tradition of community involvement and are serving in leadership roles in social, cultural, educational, financial and political institutions.”

“We are collectively invested and committed to the communities we serve,” says Carol Ritter, co-managing partner, who has been with the firm for nine years. “We live and work in these North Bay communities. We see our clients at the grocery store and on the community boards on which we sit, and our kids go to school with our clients' kids. We are mutually invested and dedicated to the North Bay communities, and it’s critical to each of us at the firm that we do our best work, and contribute to a positive internal and external work environment.”

Given the great success that DP&F has experienced, what comes next? “Our practitioners provide legal services to wine industry businesses on a daily basis, though we work broadly in the alcohol beverage industry, reflecting the rapid growth in the craft spirits and beer industries,” Ritter says. “We pride ourselves on being a full-service firm with expertise across all our practice areas. However, our bread-and-butter continues to be the alcohol beverage industries, particularly pertaining to industry regulations and land use.”

According to Ritter, that includes the craft spirits and beer industries, which have experienced great growth over the past few years. “This naturally sets us up to serve the medical and recreational cannabis industries, particularly as regulatory frameworks are established at the state and county levels,” she says. “We’re as busy as ever and we plan to continue our growth in order to serve our clients at the level we expect from ourselves. We’ve hired a number of new associate attorneys and are incredibly enthusiastic about their contributions and futures with DP&F.”

What’s on the horizon for DP&F? “Our goal is to provide top quality highly sophisticated legal advice to our clients,” says Ritter. “We strive to maintain our position as the top law firm serving the wine and alcohol beverage industries while also adapting to the rapidly changing needs of the local economy.”

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