Gwen's tax practice includes advice to individuals, businesses, nonprofit entities, and local governments on federal and state tax issues. She is experienced in corporate, partnership, and individual taxation matters, as well as the income tax and transfer tax issues of trusts and estates. Part of Gwen's practice focuses on the "sharing economy," including advice to cooperatives and cost-sharing entities, the creation of collaborative agreements among public and private entities, and innovative grant- and gift-making techniques. Gwen also addresses international tax issues, including foreign investment in businesses and assets, as well as FACTA and FBAR compliance.
In addition, Gwen is the Executive Director of an Oregon state agency that is housed at Tonkon Torp: the Oregon Facilities Authority. In this work, Gwen works closely with the Office of the State Treasurer to help Oregon nonprofits access low-cost financing for the acquisition of facilities and equipment through the issuance of revenue bonds. The Oregon Facilities Authority has issued over $3 billion in bonds in its 23 year history.
Gwen's clients appreciate her ability to listen and to hear not only to what is said, but what is not said, a critical element in helping them achieve their long-term objectives as well as short-term goals. Clients say she deploys a unique combination of intelligence and common sense to help them solve their legal problems, without forgetting the all-important human side of any problem.
Gwen began her law career at the Dallas, Texas law firm of Akin Gump, and then spent a number of years teaching law school. She taught tax law at Willamette University College of Law in Salem, Oregon for many years before joining the Eugene, Oregon boutique firm of Speer Hoyt PC. She came to Tonkon in 2008.
Get To Know
Featured Representative Matters
Local Government Advising
Private Foundation Status
The CLiF Project and Youth, Rights & Justice
It’s often the case that business attorneys shy away from justice-related pro bono work that requires appearing in court. Yet tax attorney Gwen Griffith has learned that stepping out of her lane returns value beyond measure.
Tonkon Torp Obtains Oregon Supreme Court Victory for ACLU
Tonkon Torp attorneys Steven Wilker, Sarah Einowski and Gwen Griffith, working on behalf of the ACLU of Oregon, won a large victory in the Oregon Supreme Court that strengthens the public's right to records. Find details and more featured cases here.
Yakima Products Acquires New Headquarters Campus with Help from Tonkon Torp
Tonkon Torp’s real estate and land use team completed a time-sensitive transaction that enabled the fast-growing Yakima Products, Inc., to acquire its new corporate headquarters in Lake Oswego, Oregon. Find details and more featured cases here.
Community Involvement & Activities
City of Portland Business License Appeals Board
Portland Tax Forum
Board of Directors
Youth, Rights and Justice
Pro Bono Attorney
Oregon State Bar
Taxation Section Executive Committee
The Tax Advisor
Advisory Editorial Board (professional publication of the AICPA)
2002–2003, Past President, Board of Directors
Multnomah Bar Association
Oregon Women Lawyers
Griffith and Walker Guide Business Litigators through Taxing Questions
Gwen Griffith Provides Oregon Tax Court Update to Oregon CPAs
Best Lawyers in America® Includes 49 Tonkon Torp Attorneys on 2021 List
Gwen Griffith Presents to Oregon Society of CPAs on Oregon Tax Court Cases
Gwen Griffith Talks Capital Accounts at IRS/Practitioners Forum
Gwen Griffith Reviews LLC Operating Agreements for OSB Broadbrush Taxation Event
2020 List for Best Lawyers in America® Includes 48 Tonkon Torp Attorneys
Gwen Griffith Breaks Down Capital Accounts for Mid-Valley Tax Forum
Best Lawyers in America® Names 51 Tonkon Torp Attorneys to 2019 List
Gwen Griffith Covers New Tax Law at Northwest AFP Summit
The Fleischer Case: IRS Challenges Ahead for Insurance Producers?
Oregon State Taxation of Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Plan Benefits
Changes to "Accredited Investor" and "Qualified Client" Standards Under Dodd-Frank Act
Oregon Legislature Hears Proposals To Modify The Business Energy Tax Credit
Publications & Presentations
Gwen is the co-author of a prominent book on the transition of family wealth, Family Wealth Transition Planning, published by Bloomberg in 2008 and now available through Wiley Publications. She is also the author of two leading treatises for law and taxation students published by Aspen Publishers.
“Taxing Thoughts for Business Litigators,” OSB Business Litigation Section, May 2021
"Q6 Oregon Case Law Update," Oregon Society of Certified Public Accountants, January 2021
"What Business Lawyers Need to Know About the Tax Aspects of Fixing Mistakes," Oregon Business Lawyer, June 2020
"2019 Oregon Tax Court Decisions in Review," Oregon Society of Certified Public Accountants, January 2020
"Operating Agreements: Getting it Right," Broadbrush Taxation: Tax Law for Non-Tax Lawyers Seminar, Oregon State Bar Taxation Section, October 2019
“Navigating a Failed Business Transition,” Business Transitions Seminar, KeyBank Club, May 2018
“The New Math: Business Provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017,” Northwest Association for Finance Professionals, May 2018
“CLiF Project (Changing Lives Forever),” Oregon Adolescent Sex Offending Treatment Network Conference, May 2018
“Tax Reform Part II: Key Changes and More for Business Clients,” Oregon State Bar Taxation Section, April 2018
Panelist, “Mississippi Burning: Pro Bono Service – Then and Now,” Oregon State Bar’s 25th Annual Litigation Institute & Retreat Meeting, March 2018
"New Math – The New Tax Law and Its Impact," Association for Financial Professionals, January 2018
"Recent Federal Tax Cases and Rulings," Northwest Federal Tax Conference, Oregon Society of Certified Public Accountants, November 2017
"CLiF Project (Changing Lives Forever)," Oregon State Bar Pro Bono Fair, October 2017
Moderator, "Turning Points – Stories of Transition: A Seminar for Women Business Leaders," KeyBank Club, October 2016
Moderator, "Been There! Done That! A Seminar for Women Business Leaders," KeyBank Club, October 2015
"Tax Issues of Closing Up Shop," Broadbrush Taxation: Tax Law for the Nonspecialist, Oregon State Bar Taxation Section, October 2015
"Anatomy of a Tax Mess," Mid-Willamette Chapter of the Oregon Association of Tax Consultants, June 2015
"Estate Planning and You," Ameriprise Financial, May 2015
"Issues in Alternative Investment: Is There a Cure for Auditor's Insomnia?" Association of Public Pension Fund Auditors Professional Development Conference, May 2015
"Federal Tax Cases and Rulings 2014," Midvalley Tax Forum, Oregon State Bar Taxation Section, January 20, 2015
"Recent Federal Tax Cases and Rulings," State and Local Tax Conference, Oregon Society of Certified Public Accountants, January 2015
"Recent Federal Tax Cases and Rulings," Northwest Federal Tax Conference, Oregon Society of Certified Public Accountants, November 2014
"Oops! My Client Didn't Mean to Do That – What Now?" IRS/Practitioners Forum, Oregon Society of CPAs, October 2014
"The Relationship Between a Company’s Health and Wealth," Growing a Company that is Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: A Seminar for Women Business Leaders, KeyBank Club, October 2014
"Recent Federal Tax Cases and Rulings," Oregon State Bar Taxation Section, September 2014
"Recent Oregon Tax Court Cases," Oregon Society of Certified Public Accountants, January 2014