Services & Industries
J.D., University of Missouri, Columbia School of Law, Order of the Coif
B.S. ACC, summa cum laude, University of Missouri, Columbia
Bar & Court Admissions
Oregon State Bar
Washington State Bar Association
Missouri State Bar
Kansas State Bar
U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon
Mike’s practice emphasizes general corporate counseling, debtor-creditor matters, and mergers and acquisitions. He has extensive experience representing private and public companies, shareholders, receivers, borrowers, lenders, debtors, and creditors.
Mike regularly handles mergers and acquisitions, bankruptcy and receivership proceedings, secured and unsecured transactions, and formation of LLCs and corporations. He also provides general business counseling.
Prior to joining Tonkon Torp, Mike served as a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable John R. Gibson of the United States Court of Appeals, 8th Circuit. Mike also worked as Vice President of Affordable Equity Partners, Inc. (a company specializing in syndicating tax credits and providing gap financing to real estate developers) and also as a CPA for PricewaterhouseCoopers in St. Louis, Missouri.
In re Williams, Love, O'Leary & Powers, P.C.
(Bankr. D. Or.) – Williams, Love, O'Leary & Powers, P.C. ("WLOP") is a nationally recognized plaintiffs' medical products liability firm that represents clients who suffer injuries caused by dangerous or defective medical products. Tonkon represented WLOP in its Chapter 11 case which resulted in a confirmed Plan of Reorganization through which all creditors were paid in full and the firm emerged viable and recapitalized. We believe this is the only law firm Chapter 11 in the United States in which the firm emerged intact as an operating firm continuing to serve its clients.
In re Total Mechanical, Inc.
(Bankr. D. Or.) — Total Mechanical, Inc. is a design-build mechanical contractor. When a large judgment was entered against it, Total Mechanical turned to Tonkon to file a Chapter 11 case on its behalf. Within 10 weeks of the filing of its bankruptcy case, the judgment was settled, Total Mechanical was recapitalized, and the bankruptcy case was dismissed.
In re Roman Catholic Archbishop of Portland
(Bankr. D. Or.) — On behalf of the Tort Claimants' Committee, Al Kennedy led a team of Tonkon lawyers in the first-ever bankruptcy filing by a Catholic Archdiocese. Tonkon successfully navigated numerous issues of first impression arising from the intersection of real estate, corporate, constitutional, bankruptcy, charitable trust, and religious institutions law. All claimants were paid in full, with interest, after each claim was individually mediated.
In re Beall Corporation
(Bankr. D. Or.) — Beall Corporation manufactured truck tanks and trailers at multiple factories, and operated sales and service branches across the western United States. Tonkon represented Beall in its Chapter 11 case. The company's divisions were sold as going concerns to four different purchasers and a Plan of Liquidation is scheduled for confirmation in September of 2013.
In re Western Communications, Inc.
(Bankr. D. Or.) — Western Communications, Inc. owns eight newspapers, including the Bend Bulletin, La Grande Observer, Baker City Herald, Redwood Spokesman, Curry Coastal Pilot, Central Oregon Nickel Ads, Daily Triplicate, and Sonora Union Democrat. Tonkon represented the company in its Chapter 11 case, through which the company restructured its debts and emerged within nine months.
In re C & K Market, Inc.
(Bankr. D. Or.) — Headquartered in Brookings, Oregon, C & K Market is an independently-owned grocery store chain located primarily in small communities in southern and central Oregon and northern California. Tonkon Torp represented the company in its Chapter 11 case, which recapitalized the company through a debt-for-equity exchange and enabled the company to emerge with a strong balance sheet and solid earnings. During the seven-month reorganization, the company sold its 15 pharmacy operations, sold or closed 20 of its original 60 grocery stores, and refinanced its secured debt. A team comprised of bankruptcy lawyers Mike Fletcher, Al Kennedy, and Ava Schoen led extensive negotiations with the grocer’s secured and unsecured creditors to ensure the uninterrupted support of trade creditors, manage PACA liabilities, and confirm and implement the plan.
In re HemCon Medical Technologies, Inc.
(Bankr. D. Or.) — HemCon Medical Technologies, Inc. develops, manufactures, and sells a line of wound care products throughout the world. When faced with a disastrous patent infringement judgment, HemCon turned to Tonkon to represent it in its Chapter 11 bankruptcy case. Through its bankruptcy case, HemCon was able to sell certain non-core product lines, attract new equity investment, restructure its secured and unsecured debt, including the judgment debt, and emerge from bankruptcy as a viable, operating, recapitalized business.
In re Christensen Shipyards, Ltd.
Tonkon represented Miles Stover, the court appointed general receiver for Christensen Shipyards, Ltd. CSL is the premier manufacturer of 50 meter composite fiberglass motor yachts in the U.S. The sale price of the yachts is in the range of $34 million. Mr. Stover was appointed and retained Tonkon on March 20, 2015. Virtually all employees at the shipyard had been laid off and all operations had ceased. Three yachts were in process. We assisted the Receiver in negotiating financing facilities with each of the yacht purchasers that enabled the shipyard to bring back approximately 140 employees and restore operations. Subsequently, we assisted the Receiver in the sale of the shipyard to Christensen Shipyards LLC, an entity formed by the yacht purchasers. Thereafter we represented the Receiver in a lawsuit asserting claims against insiders and affiliates and seeking recovery of fraudulent conveyances. Following the sale and the settlement of the lawsuit, the Receiver paid the claims of secured and priority creditors in full and the claims of unsecured creditors in excess of 70%.
Represented seller in $10 million sale of automobile dealership.
Represented buyer in $20 million acquisition of multiple automobile dealerships.
Christensen Shipyards, Inc.
Represented the General Receiver in Christensen Shipyards, Inc., including the sale of all assets of Christensen Shipyards, the resolution of multiple disputes, and the administration of over 500 chains.
Represented franchisee in $200 million sale of multiple franchises.
Represented shareholders in $150 million sale of controlling interest of privately-held manufacturing company.
Williams, Love, O'Leary & Powers, P.C.
In re Williams, Love, O'Leary & Powers, P.C. (Bankr. D. Or.) — Williams, Love, O'Leary & Powers, P.C. ("WLOP") is a nationally recognized plaintiffs' medical products liability firm that represents clients who suffer injuries caused by dangerous or defective medical products. Tonkon represented WLOP in its Chapter 11 case, which resulted in a confirmed Plan of Reorganization through which all creditors were paid in full and the firm emerged viable and recapitalized. We believe this is the only law firm Chapter 11 in the United States in which the firm emerged intact as an operating firm continuing to serve its clients.
In re Oregon Contractors Workers' Compensation Trust
(Bankr. D. Or.) – Oregon Contractors Workers' Compensation Trust is a self-insurance non-profit corporation organized by an employer group under the Oregon Workers' Compensation statutes. Tonkon represented the Trust in a unique and creative use of the bankruptcy process to facilitate the wind-down of an insurance company.
In re Storables Inc.
(Bankr. D. Or.) – In 2009, Al Kennedy and Mike Fletcher helped this prominent retail homeware company shed debt and pare down its operations by rejecting and restructuring its lease obligations in a Chapter 11. The company emerged from bankruptcy in nine months.
In re Chef Solutions, LLC, et al
(Bankr. D. Del.) – Tonkon assisted Reser's Fine Foods, Inc. in providing post-petition financing to and acquiring the assets of Chef Solutions through a Delaware bankruptcy case.
In re Bonavia Timber Company, LLC, and Nevada First Corporation
(Bankr. D. Or.) – Bonavia Timber Company and Nevada First Corporation conduct extensive ranching operations in Oregon and Nevada. They were confronted with a multi-million dollar lawsuit that threatened their ability to continue operations. Tonkon represented the companies in their Chapter 11 case that resulted in a settlement of the lawsuit and confirmation of a Plan of Reorganization within eight months of the filing date.
In re Grange Mutual Insurance Company
(Bankr. D. Or.) – Tonkon represented Grange Mutual Insurance Company ("GMIC") in its Chapter 11 liquidation. We believe the GMIC case is one of only two cases involving the wind-down of an insurance company through Chapter 11 since the Bankruptcy Code was adopted. The case was filed in July 2002 and the Plan of Liquidation was confirmed in December 2002. GMIC had over 35,000 policy holders and hundreds of outstanding claims. All policies were rejected and a claims bar date was set. By the end of 2003 all claims were liquidated and paid.
In re The Columbian Publishing Company
(Bankr. W.D. Wa.) – Nine months after Tonkon filed the Columbian Publishing Company's Chapter 11 case, Southwest Washington’s largest daily newspaper emerged from bankruptcy in early 2010 thanks to the work of Al Kennedy and Mike Fletcher.
In re Lumber Products, Inc.
(Bankr. D. Or.) – Lumber Products was a manufacturer and distributor of building products. Tonkon represented the company in its Chapter 11 case. The company was sold through a 363 sale and a plan was confirmed within six months of the petition date.
In re Blue Heron Paper Company
(Bankr. D. Or.) – Wells Fargo Bank relied on Tim Conway and Mike Fletcher to protect its interest as a secured lender when the Blue Heron Paper Company filed for Chapter 11 protection. The Tonkon Torp team negotiated with Blue Heron regarding the use of Wells Fargo's cash collateral and the treatment of the bank’s secured claim.
Auto dealership sales are generally straightforward affairs that frequently involve both business and real estate assets. In 2015, Tonkon Torp got involved in a purchase transaction that took a unique turn. Find details and more featured cases here.
In one of the quickest and most successful conclusions of a grocery chain bankruptcy proceeding, Tonkon Torp secured court approval of a reorganization plan for C&K Market, Inc., to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy just seven months after filing. Find details and more featured cases here.
The Tonkon Torp-led sale of NORPAC Foods, Inc. has been named an M&A Deal of the Year ($100MM-$250MM) in the 19th Annual M&A Advisor Awards, which selects the finest deals and professionals within the global M&A and Turnaround industry annually.
Community Involvement & Activities
Turnaround Management Association
Multnomah Bar Association
Attorneys from the Tonkon Torp Bankruptcy & Reorganization Practice Group were invited to author three guides for Thomson Reuters Practical Law, published as part of their State Q&A series for Bankruptcy and Restructuring. Each guide provides in-depth detail on a specific aspect of Bankruptcy and Restructuring in Oregon.
Fifty-three Tonkon Torp lawyers representing 37 practice areas have been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2023. Nearly all the attorneys have been previously named to the peer-review list, and most have been listed for more than 10 years.
Chambers USA has recognized 28 Tonkon Torp attorneys in eight practice areas in its Chambers USA 2022 Guide.
Fifty-three Tonkon Torp lawyers representing 39 practice areas have been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2022
The Portland Business Journal named the Tonkon Torp-led sale of NORPAC as one of its five most captivating M&A deals for 2020 in its annual roundup of the state’s largest M&A transactions.
COVID-19 ushered in a volatile economic climate that has made it difficult for many companies to meet their debt obligations.
Publications & Presentations
“UCC Article 9 Sales: Oregon,” Thompson Reuters Practical Law, March 2022