Of Counselin Eau Claire, Menomonie, Black River Falls, and Wausau
Weld Riley, S.C., has access to fourteen Of Counsel attorneys whose collective experience provides the firm with an invaluable source of advice, experience and guidance.
Thomas J. Graham, Jr.
Tom’s litigation practice focused on the areas of insurance defense, personal injury, and business disputes, as well as representation of clients involved in professional malpractice.
Growing up in Northwest Wisconsin, it was appropriate that Tom returned to Eau Claire upon graduation from law school. Tom received his Bachelor of Science degree from St. John’s University in 1972 and his law degree from Creighton University in 1975 where he was a member of the editorial staff of Creighton University Law Review. He was licensed to practice law in Wisconsin in 1975 and is also licensed to practice law in federal courts in Wisconsin, the US Circuit Court of Appeals-7th Circuit and the US Supreme Court.
In 2007 Tom was inducted as a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, one of the premier legal associations in America. Fellowship is extended by invitation only and requires a minimum 15 years of trial experience.
Tom is a member of the Eau Claire County Bar Association where he served as president, the State Bar of Wisconsin (Litigation Section), and Wisconsin Defense Counsel. He is a past Governor of the State Bar of Wisconsin and has served on the District 8 Board of Attorneys Professional Responsibility. He has participated in the Lawyers Skills Program at the University of Wisconsin Law School and has lectured at various civil trial seminars. Tom has been named numerous times as a Wisconsin Super Lawyer by Law and Politics and Milwaukee Magazine. Tom was also selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® publication in the practice area of Personal Injury Litigation from 2011 to the present.
Thomas J. Misfeldt
Tom represented individuals injured in accidents and also insurance companies when their insureds had lawsuits filed against them. His expertise included defending municipalities.
Tom graduated from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1974 and focused on trial work after graduation.
Before joining Weld Riley in 2002, Tom was a senior partner in the firm of Misfeldt, Richie, Wickstrom & Wachs for many years and began his legal career in Racine, Wisconsin. Tom frequently participated in the Lawyers Skills Program at the University of Wisconsin Law School as a faculty member.
Tom served on committees for the Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce and United Way of Eau Claire. He is an avid golfer, reader and traveler. Tom was selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America and was named as a Wisconsin Super Lawyer by Law and Politics and Milwaukee Magazine.
Kathryn J. Prenn
As one of the founding partners of Weld, Riley, Prenn and Ricci, S.C., Kathy was a member of the firm’s Management Committee, as well as the firm’s Vice President and Managing Partner. She also served as Co-Chair of the firm’s Labor and Employment Section.
Kathy received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and her law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School, where she was a member of the Wisconsin Law Review and the Order of the Coif. In addition, Kathy received her Educational Specialist degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
For several years running, Kathy was included in the Best Lawyers in America, and named as a Wisconsin Super Lawyer by Law and Politics Magazine. She also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Wisconsin School Attorneys Association.
In 2004, Kathy received the George Tipler Award by the Wisconsin School Attorneys’ Association for her distinguished service in school law.
Thomas J. Sazama
Before joining the firm, Tom served as a Circuit Judge in Chippewa County since being appointed by Governor Tommy G. Thompson in 1994.
Prior to his ascent to the Chippewa County bench, Tom was a Chippewa County District Attorney, a part-time U.S. Magistrate Judge for the Western District of Wisconsin, and engaged in private practice where he represented individuals and corporations in all areas of business law. He also served as an infantry soldier during the Vietnam War.
Tom provides advice to clients on corporate, regulatory, and litigation matters. He also trains and mentors the firm’s younger lawyers in all areas of legal practice.
Tom received his law degree from Marquette University and his undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is a Chippewa Falls native and has lived in the Chippewa Valley with his family since 1973.
William H. Thedinga
Bill is a graduate of Harvard Law School, where he was president of the Harvard Legal Aid Society. After practicing with a large Boston law firm, Bill returned to Wisconsin to practice law with his father in Menomonie at the Thedinga Law Firm. In 2003, Thedinga Law Firm merged with Weld, Riley, Prenn, & Ricci, which later became Weld Riley.
Bill served a wide range of cooperatives and other business clients in connection with formation and structuring of business entities, mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructuring, and business dispositions. He represented cooperative businesses across Wisconsin including electric and telephone cooperatives, credit unions, and farm supply cooperatives. Bill was a former corporation counsel for Dunn County, a former attorney for numerous villages and towns, and was admitted to practice in the federal district court for the Western District of Wisconsin, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court.
Bill was a charter member of the Wisconsin Bar’s Public Utilities Law Section as well as serving on its Board of Directors. He was also a charter member of the Electric Cooperative Bar Association, and was an instructor in the clinical practice course at the University of Wisconsin Law School.
Active in a number of community organizations, Bill was a past president and former member of the Board of Directors of the Mabel Tainter Center for the Arts. He also served as the president of the Free Clinic of the Greater Menomonie Area.
William G. Thiel
Bill’s practice focused on contracts, advice and counsel, legislation drafting, zoning, municipal litigation, and appeals. He dealt with legal issues pertaining to property, easements, and public streets/highways, while also serving as co-chair of the Government Relations Section.
In his more than 29-year municipal practice, Bill became involved in such wide-ranging issues as property tax assessments, zoning and planning, zoning enforcement, condemnation efforts, open meetings and public records law issues, development agreements, tax incremental advice, and general municipal consultation. He provided legal services to municipalities and individuals with respect to municipal regulations, licensing, permits, and business affairs.
Born in Milwaukee, Bill is a graduate of Marquette Law School. Since 1975, Bill has been a resident of Eau Claire and has served as Corporation Counsel for Eau Claire, Rusk, Pierce, and Walworth Counties. In addition, Bill has served as the City Attorney for Bloomer, River Falls, Stanley, and Owen, Wisconsin, and as Village Attorney for Fall Creek and Osceola, Wisconsin. He has also acted as special counsel to and on behalf of numerous cities, villages, towns, counties, school districts, and special municipal districts throughout West Central and Northwestern Wisconsin. Bill was elected by his peers statewide to serve on the Administrative and Local Government Section of the State Bar of Wisconsin.
In his free time, Bill teaches courses on 19th Century German immigration to Wisconsin. He also enjoys reading history and biographies.
James M. Ward
Since 1976, Jim represented school districts throughout the Eau Claire region in virtually all areas of school law. His primary concentration has been in the areas of student discipline and civil rights.
Before joining Weld Riley, Jim practiced law for over a dozen years with his mentor, the late Steve Riley, one of the school law pioneers in Wisconsin.
A past president and member of the Wisconsin School Attorneys Association’s Board of Directors, Jim earned his undergraduate from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and his law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School. While in law school, he was selected as a member of the prestigious Order of the Coif in recognition of his high academic standing as a law student.
Thomas B. Rusboldt
Tom’s practice focused on the defense of medical malpractice cases. Tom represented the Injured Patients and Families Compensation Fund in medical malpractice cases throughout Northwestern Wisconsin. Tom has been defending against allegations of medical malpractice since 1987.
Tom’s litigation experience began as District Attorney for Manitowoc County and developed as a partner with Kaminski & Rusboldt and later, with Nash, Spindler, Grimstad & McCracken, LLP of Manitowoc. Tom has tried hundreds of jury cases to verdict and has litigated a wide variety of legal issues.
Tom also has extensive experience representing school districts, municipalities and other employers in a wide variety of matters including discrimination and termination proceedings.
Tom earned a degree in Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1969 and a law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1972. He is a member of the American Bar Association, Wisconsin Bar Association (employment law and litigation sections), Eau Claire County Bar Association, Wisconsin School Attorneys Association and Wisconsin Association for Justice. For many years Tom served as a court commissioner and as chairman of the Wisconsin State Bar District Four Professional Responsibility Committee.
Tom is admitted to practice in the state courts of Wisconsin, the Eastern and Western District Federal Courts of Wisconsin and the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals.