About Jimmy Magahern

Jimmy Magahern Articles written 13

Articles written by Jimmy Magahern

Balance Point

When she’s not slaying trolls and conquering class actions, Cindy Ricketts proves lawyers can manage life and the law

In a case that went from internet complaint to class action suit, Cynthia “Cindy” Ricketts contended with a pesky claim against the Massage Envy franchise that landed in two states. “That was a case in which somebody was claiming they didn’t get what they purchased,” she says, “because they, the consumer, did not understand that when it advertised a price for a one-hour massage session, they were only going to receive 50 minutes of hands-on massage time and the other 10 minutes …

Matching the Hatch

For master mediator and avid fly fisherman Paul Bardacke, timing and preparation are everything

Every great fly fisherman knows the first rule of tying flies to lure the big fish: You’ve got to match the hatch. You’ve got to get a good look at what’s already hatching on the surface of the water—be it mayfly, caterpillar, scud or leech. Observe what the trout are eating, and what they want more of. Then tie a fly sure to get a bite: a lure that offers exactly what they’re hungry for, but with a hook to catch and reel them in. Paul Bardacke, co-founder of Bardacke Allison in Santa …

King of the Long Shot

Karl Tilleman is as sure a shot in court as he was on the court

On the wall of his office at Steptoe & Johnson in downtown Phoenix, Karl Tilleman keeps a framed photo of himself and Michael Jordan facing off against each other in the 1984 Olympics. It’s a better photo of Jordan than of Tilleman, a Utah-born kid who moved to Canada after his dad accepted a teaching position at the University of Calgary, and who eventually did well enough in its basketball program to make the Canadian Olympic team. In the shot, Tilleman, holding the ball, is half …

The First Lady

As Phoenix’s first lady, Nicole France Stanton fights bullying in her brother’s memory

Google the phrase “First Lady of Phoenix,” and, curiously, your results won’t date back further than 2012. That’s the year Greg Stanton took office as mayor and Nicole France Stanton took the role of mayoral spouse to a whole new level.  “I know that no other first lady of Phoenix has ever turned the position into what I turned it into,” says Stanton, who jokingly laments that “FLOP” lacks the elegance of “FLOTUS.” “We’ve had some great first ladies. Certainly Mayor …

The Voice

Booker T. Evans Jr. speaks softly but powerfully for clients who might otherwise go unheard  

“The honor of having people trust you with their problem, to speak for them,” says Booker T. Evans Jr., gazing out a conference room window on the 23rd floor of the downtown Phoenix skyscraper housing Ballard Spahr’s Arizona offices, “that’s the thing that reaches inside you, and makes you know that you’re doing something that’s important. It’s still an honor that people actually hire me to go in and speak for them in a place where they can’t speak for themselves.” Evans …

Speaking the Language

James A. Ryan approaches business law as only a former NSA intelligence agent could: by decrypting coded information and putting the pieces back together

Nobody ever got to become James Bond by picking cotton in Chandler, Arizona. But James A. Ryan came close. Now a partner in the Phoenix office of Quarles & Brady, Ryan recalls a moment in 1978 when he was being escorted into Government Communications Headquarters, the central intelligence hub for Her Majesty’s Secret Service, in Cheltenham, England. “I was working for the NSA, getting sent to a meeting at the British Ministry of Defence in London to exchange intelligence information …


Arizona Justice Project founder Larry A. Hammond speaks about the cases that have “gut-hooked” him

Ray Girdler never had a whole lot of money. That would explain why, shortly after his wife gave birth to their first baby in 1979, he boasted to friends that he had found “a steal” in an 18-year-old, 50-foot mobile home he bought for $2,750. It also helps explain why, two years later, when that trailer, with its old wiring and thin plywood paneling, burned to the ground near Prescott, Ariz.—with his wife and daughter trapped inside—prosecutors were able to convince a jury that Girdler, …

Perfect Balance

Pamela Overton Risoleo juggles high-stakes litigation, her family and empowering young women

When Kristine Campbell STARTED her career at Greenberg Traurig, she was impressed with Pamela Overton Risoleo’s legal work. Overton’s representation of a string of Fortune 500 companies put the Iowa-bred litigator on the front page of the business journals, and her extended work defending Lorillard Tobacco Company in the landmark Big Tobacco liability suit ultimately banished the likes of Joe Camel and the Marlboro Man from the nation’s billboards and proved she was able to handle …

All Along the Watchtower

Media lawyer and Dylan sound-alike David J. Bodney protects the media’s access to public records

On the second Saturday of 2011, Jared Lee Loughner entered the parking lot of a Safeway supermarket in a suburb of Tucson and opened fire, shooting 18 people. U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was critically injured and six others were killed, including U.S. District Judge John Roll; Giffords’ community outreach coordinator, Gabriel Zimmerman; and Christina-Taylor Green, a 9-year-old girl born on 9/11. Because Loughner’s killing spree apparently targeted a Democratic politician at a time when …

The Sailor

Legendary Phoenix defense attorney Larry Debus is equally adept at navigating sea currents and jury trials

In the fall of 1980, Larry Debus sold his cars, gave away his gold Rolex and left his thriving law practice to his partner with the line, “Maybe I’ll see ya someday!” Debus and then-wife Leslie packed up their essential belongings and took off on his Vagabond 47 yacht, first around Mexico and then across the Pacific Ocean to the South Pacific islands. “I needed some kind of new adventure,” says the veteran Phoenix attorney, who had by then established himself as one of the …

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