Biography

Rick Tooker is a seasoned land use planning professional with 30 years of experience navigating the many facets associated with land use rights for complex, and sometimes controversial, projects in the San Francisco Bay Area and Monterey Peninsula. He has worked in Napa, Healdsburg, Calistoga, Livermore, and Carmel-by-the-Sea, and consulted in several other cities on residential and mixed use developments, including Oakland’s City Center development. Rick is based out of Farella’s St. Helena office with a focus on the wine industry.

Rick effectively and efficiently manages diverse teams in the areas of planning, economic development, housing, building, and code compliance. He has managed preparation and implementation of general plans, master plans, specific plans, ordinances, and design guidelines.

Prior to joining Farella, Rick actively participated in the resurgence of Downtown Napa. He specifically managed projects securing entitlements for several hundred-thousand square feet of new retail, office, industrial, and residential development. He was the project manager of Napa Riverfront, Andaz, Napa Square, Main Street West, 1313 Main Street, and the Culinary Institute of America at Copia. As a community development director and planning manager in Napa, he also led the development department in permitting revitalization and construction of First Street Napa and 1300 First Street, Vista Collina Resort, and the Cinedome Plaza.

To help avoid unforeseen circumstances that could delay a project, Rick actively listens to and works with others to carefully consider a broad range of possibilities and outcomes before charting a course. He is politically astute and has earned the respect of local agency decision-makers and their staff.

Memberships and Affiliations

  • American Planning Association (APA)
  • Napa Parks and Recreation Board
  • Yountville Zoning and Design Review Board

Firm Highlights

Publication

Where Are We Now, Following Maui County, Sackett, and the Latest EPA Guidance?

The last few years have seen significant developments in our understanding of the reach of the federal Clean Water Act (CWA). (Indeed, “reach” here can be interpreted literally and figuratively.) The two issues plaguing...

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Publication

Court Reinstates CPPA Enforcement Authority and Confirms No Delay Necessary for Enforcement of Future CCPA Regulations

A recent appellate decision has made clear that the regulations promulgated under California’s groundbreaking consumer privacy law, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA, as amended by the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA)), are ripe...

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News

Farella Awards 2024 Diversity Scholarships to Bay Area Law Students

Farella Braun + Martel’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion + Belonging Committee is pleased to announce the recipients of our 2024 Diversity Scholarship grants totaling $45,000 to Bay Area first-year law students Marcus Albino, Saamia Haqiq...

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News

JPMorgan Chase Accuses TransUnion of Stealing 'Trade Secrets'

Intellectual property practice chair Eugene Mar provided expert commentary to American Banker for the article "JPMorgan Chase Accuses TransUnion of Stealing 'Trade Secrets'." In the article, he said: "By filing this as a trade...

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Event

AI and Privacy: What Every Company Needs to Do Today

Sushila Chanana and Benjamin Buchwalter will discuss "AI and Privacy: What Every Company Needs to Do Today' at the ACC 2024 Privacy Summit.  This session will introduce basics of AI governance, such as ownership...

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News

Farella Braun + Martel Earns San Francisco Green Business Recertification

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Publication

New PFAS Federal Drinking Water Standards Create Major Liability and Litigation Risk

The United States Environmental Protection Agency has released a final regulation setting individual drinking water maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) for five per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). These MCLs are incredibly stringent due to EPA’s stated concerns...

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News

Burdened by Debt, Savvy SF Office Owners Get Creative

Restructuring, insolvency, and creditors rights partner Gary Kaplan provided expert commentary in The San Francisco Standard article, "Burdened by Debt, Savvy SF Office Owners Get Creative." In the article, Gary explained that in most cases...

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Publication

Copyright Law for Influencers and Brands: How Content Creators and Companies Hiring Them Can Navigate Copyright Law for a Successful Partnership

In recent years, the advent of the social media “influencer” has revolutionized advertising. Companies often partner with influencers to market their products, hoping to tap into the influencer’s devoted audience. Likewise, influencers create certain content...

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Event

Unplugged: The Renewable Energy Speaker Series - The IRA's Environmental Justice Incentive Programs

Join Farella Braun + Martel and the Environmental Law Institute for the relaunch Unplugged: The Renewable Energy Speaker Series with Farella’s John Ugai and guest speakers Miana Campbell with U.S. Department of Energy, Maria Castillo with...

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