Richard Tasker, Esq. brings more than 40 years of experience to his work as a construction consultant. The son of a General Contractor and Developer, he has been actively involved in construction evaluations and consulting throughout his career. He has been President and Owner of Sage Associates, Inc. since 1984.
A native of Syracuse, New York, Mr. Tasker has a B.A. in Landscape Architecture from the State University of New York and a B.S. in Environmental Science from Syracuse University. After graduation he joined an Architecture/Engineering firm in the New York City area and began work on an MBA which he completed in 1978 from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida. While working in New York, Mr. Tasker first began to provide consulting services on troubled construction projects in the northeast, mid-Atlantic, and southern state. Those early clients were primarily banks, REIT’s and Surety companies.
Thorough, practical, and client-focused services in the evaluation and resolution of troubled construction projects are the hallmark of Mr. Tasker’s career.
After moving to Colorado in the late 1970’ he worked for a development firm and in 1982 incorporated, Earthworks, Inc. which provided Land Planning, Entitlement and Permitting Services, Development Consultation, and Landscape Architecture services. Earthworks received several Best of the West awards for Development Master Planning and Land Planning/Landscape Architecture. While in Colorado, Mr. Tasker taught several courses at the University of Colorado, Graduate School of Design and Planning in Denver, and in the undergraduate program in Boulder. Mr. Tasker was also elected and served a term as the State Chapter President of the American Society of Landscape Architects and served on several national committees of ASLA.
Mr. Tasker incorporated the firm now known as Sage Associates, Inc.1 in Denver and expanded to a second office in Southern California in 1986. He relocated to California in 1991.
Mr. Tasker has qualified and testified on numerous occasions in both Federal and State Court matters in California, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, and New Jersey. He has also been actively involved in Professional Associations including the ABA Construction Forum and Surety and Fidelity sections, Surety Claims Institute, National Bond Claims Association, and the Pearlman Association. Mr. Tasker has been a presenter at many Construction and Surety industry events including the American General Contractors, American Subcontractors Association, National Association of Bond Producers, and has presented to attorneys involved in construction disputes in Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia and elsewhere. Mr. Tasker was co-author of the first Edition of the John Wiley and Sons book “Practical Guide to Construction Contract Surety Claims.” He is also a founding member of the Western States Surety Conference. He belongs to many industry and professional organizations including the Construction Financial Management Association and Construction Specification Institute.
In response to a growing need for fast and highly cost-effective means of resolving certain Performance Bond challenges, Mr. Tasker acquired majority ownership of a California “A” licensed General Contracting firm, S&W Investments in early 2008 and acts as S&W President and majority shareholder. The firm has completed more than $ 35 Million in construction since that time.
Recently Mr. Tasker began offering services as a Construction Mediator. He focuses on a niche market, low cost resolution of early stage, smaller dollar disputes where traditional litigation options are financially disproportional.
Yaniv Newman, Esq. has extensive experience in various aspects of construction litigation and related insurance coverage matters. His practice involves representing developers and general contractors in a wide variety of legal issues arising in construction projects, including resolution of liens, delay claims, and construction defect claims, and insurance coverage disputes arising during the course of construction and thereafter. Mr. Newman also advises developers and general contractors in risk mitigation, and best practices to avoid legal disputes before they arise. When disputes do arise, Mr. Newman has represented the firm’s general contractor and developer clients in both Federal and State Courts in unlimited and complex jurisdictions, and through private dispute resolution services including mediation, arbitration, and judicial reference proceedings.
Prior to his undergraduate studies, Mr. Newman served in the United States Marine Corps for four years, including one tour of duty in Iraq in 2003. After his service, he pursued a legal career and earned his B.S. degree in Business Administration from the University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business. Mr. Newman then attained his J.D. from the University of San Francisco School of Law. While in law school, he served on the staff of the Intellectual Property Law Bulletin and assisted in representing individuals in arbitration’s before the Financial Industry Regulatory Agency (FINRA) as part of the law school’s Investor Justice Clinic. He was admitted to the State Bar of California in 2013.
Mr. Newman currently works as an attorney at Sullivan Hill, a full-service law firm in San Diego, California. He practices in the Construction, Insurance, and Commercial and Business Litigation practice groups. At Sullivan Hill, he advises clients in various areas of construction and insurance litigation matters where he has obtained numerous favorable outcomes for his clients. He has successfully defended complex multi-million dollar construction litigation matters including for publicly traded land developers before the California Superior Courts. Prior to joining Sullivan Hill, Mr. Newman worked at litigation firms in San Francisco and Santa Rosa, where he primarily focused on construction, personal injury, insurance defense, and business litigation.
Mr. Newman is a long-standing supporter of the community and is actively involved in a variety of legal and civil organizations. He is a frequent speaker on legal topics relevant to the construction industry. He currently serves on the Executive Committee for the Construction Law Section of the San Diego County Bar Association. As the 2019 chair, he assists with providing educational programming and networking opportunities for construction law professionals. From 2015-2018, he served as chair for the board of directors of Swords to Plowshares, a San Francisco based veterans service nonprofit that provides a variety of services to thousands of Bay Area veterans each year. In this role, he ensured the oversight of the board to further its vision in providing access to the care and services veterans need to rebuild their lives. He is a member of the Building Industry Association of San Diego and Claims and Litigation Management Alliance.