Our Team

Melissa B. Portell

When you call our office, you might get the boss.  Melissa works on all client matters, prepares estate documents and keeps the trains running on time.

Melissa is a woman of many talents, but is too humble to tell you about them.  Luckily, she is not the one creating this website.  A devoted mom to two boys, Melissa is an accomplished  dancer and gifted artist (BFA from the University of Arizona, 1991).  If you are lucky, you might have seen her perform Bollywood in front of the Fox Theater or ballet in the Stevie Eller Dance Theater.  If you are really, really lucky, you might get to see some of her artwork.  Maybe.

Melissa helps our clients through their darkest hours and makes the practice of law feel more like helping family than shuffling papers.


Melisa F. Holm

Our Super Paralegal has been helping attorneys do jury research for 17 years.  Melisa works on all client matters, but her primary focus is litigation.

Melisa is our resident expert on discovery strategy and trial preparation.  Some firms rely on software to remember client names and the details of our cases.  Our system is better: Melisa. 

No soul is more kind and attentive than our Melisa.

When she is away from the office, you might find her writing novels, attending comic cons across the country or rescuing kittens.  Melisa is known for her compassion, patience and disturbingly detailed knowledge of "Dr. Who".


Stephen T. Portell

The attorney who likes to be called simply "Steve" or "STP" is a kid from Detroit who worked his way through college and law school building computers at CompUSA and fixing cars at Sears.  His professional CV is listed below, but if, you really want to know who he is, you can read our client testimonials or read through our photo gallery.

STP has a wide range of interests when he is not practicing law: powerlifting (state record holder), jujitsu (black belt), astronomy, amateur radio (W7QBG, extra class), motorcycles and camping with his wife, Melissa.  STP is obnoxiously proud of his two boys, and, from their earliest years, they have attended trials and hearings with their father in courtrooms throughout Arizona.  The boys say they might want to be attorneys some day.  The world isn't ready for that many Portell boys with law degrees! 

STP treats clients like family, and he has never needed to advertise for clients in his 23 years of practice.  From complex civil litigation to advocating for survivors of domestic/sexual abuse to representing working people, STP never quits.  He has earned several awards for his commitment to pro bono work and locating missing children under the Hague Convention.  If you ask STP "what kind of law do you do?", he might respond: "Whaddya got?"