SOURCE: Weiland, Golden, Smiley, Wang Ekvall & Strok, LLP
COSTA MESA, CA--(Marketwired - Aug 20, 2014) - The law firm of Weiland, Golden, Smiley, Wang Ekvall & Strok, LLP (Weiland Golden) today announced the successful facilitation and confirmation of a multi-faceted plan to restore The Woman's Club of Hollywood, California (WCH) and set it on a path to prosperity and its former glory and relevance. The legal order confirming the plan took effect today, launching the club on a straightforward track to regaining financial health and overall stability.
Since its inception in 1905, the WCH has strived to serve the community and advance the arts through social, cultural and philanthropic endeavors. The club has made several notable contributions including establishing the first Hollywood Public Library, supporting the Hollywood Hospital, and helping to create the Hollywood Bowl, the first Easter Sunrise Service and the famous Hollywood Studio Club. In recent years, the organization has faced dire challenges with leadership, governance and financial vulnerability -- including a multi-year litigation battle with new comers attempting to gain control of WCH and its valuable real estate -- that threatened a permanent end to this historic institution.
Seeking to repair this complex and highly volatile situation, the Bankruptcy Court appointed Heide Kurtz as the Chapter 11 Trustee for the club. Kurtz and her counsel, partners Lei Lei Wang Ekvall and Robert Marticello of Weiland Golden faced numerous challenges in their efforts to correct the injustices plaguing the WCH, including a number of legal issues unique to non-profit organizations in Chapter 11, a place where non-profit organizations usually do not find themselves. Under the plan negotiated and confirmed by Wang Ekvall and Marticello, the WCH will transition to a new and capable board of directors who are committed to restoring the club; be permitted to raise donations to repay its debts; and be able to retain its club house, a highly-valuable and historic property located blocks from Grauman's Chinese Theater.
Partners Wang Ekvall and Marticello noted the unique challenges of facilitating the reorganization plan for WCH.
"For non-profits, effectively circumnavigating financial hardship while recognizing and preserving its intangible values is extremely difficult, and in the case of the Woman's Club of Hollywood the conditions were particularly complicated by former management displaced by the Bankruptcy Court," Wang Ekvall said. "The confirmation of our reorganization plan represents a significant turning point for the Woman's Club of Hollywood, helping this historic organization regain control of its future and set the club on a path to fiscal and administrative health."
New Leadership Restores Integrity & Instills Confidence
The new board of directors for WCH is composed of extremely experienced and competent volunteers who have demonstrated a commitment to the club's mission and values and desire to see it restored to prosperity. The newly named president is Claudia Deutsch, who served as president of the Beverly Hills Women's Club from 2007-2011 and was instrumental in helping grow its membership and bring the organization to its current operational health. Additional board members include Andrea Quinn, vice president; John Crosby; Rev. Kandace Krapu; and Christine Zardeneta.
"As trustee, I am envisioning that the Woman's Club of Hollywood can now move forward to preserve the historic clubhouse, serve the community and the arts by providing volunteer service along with allowing for social enrichment among its members," said Kurtz.
The new leadership team will place a high priority on restoring the legacy WCH and revitalizing the organization by re-engaging former members and conducting outreach to attract new members. The WCH is looking to the people of Los Angeles and surrounding community who share the organization's values of preserving historical Hollywood and supporting the community and arts through cultural and philanthropic efforts. For more information about The Woman's Club of Hollywood, California, visit www.wchollywood.org.
About Weiland, Golden, Smiley, Wang Ekvall & Strok, LLP
Weiland, Golden, Smiley, Wang Ekvall & Strok, LLP combines the sophistication, experience and scholastic excellence of a large law firm with the efficient, high-energy, hands-on attitude and focus of a specialized boutique. With a proven record of successful bankruptcy cases, the firm is uniquely qualified to represent debtors, creditors, creditors' committees, trustees, asset purchasers and other parties in bankruptcy cases, receiverships, private workouts and settlement negotiations. The firm's transactional attorneys are skilled in secured lending transactions and all transactional aspects of sale of real property, business entity formation, and general business matters. The firm's attorneys also include experienced mediators, cognizant of the importance of resolving disputes before they develop into expensive protracted litigation, yet fully equipped to provide effective and cost efficient advocacy and counsel needed for litigation. The Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory awarded Weiland, Golden, Smiley, Wang Ekvall & Strok, LLP an "AV" rating, the highest professional rating awarded by that publication. The firm also appears in the Martindale-Hubbell Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers, and received a First-Tier Ranking in the inaugural edition of the U.S. News and World Report publication, "Best Law Firms." For more information about the firm, visit http://www.wgllp.com