Robert A. Poppe (1893-1923)
Attorney Robert A. Poppe, the son of German immigrants, began practicing law in the late 1800s. His family had a ranch out where Viansa sits now. His mother had a store where he held his office’s operations. Folks would tie their carriages to the front posts, the base of which you can see today.
At that time the practice of law was less formal. Without a bar association regulating attorneys or a recorder’s office regulating property holdings, things were left in large part to the local advisors.
He delt with pioneer issues of resolving land claims and other neighborly negotiations. Patents, notarizations, and taxation were also in his arena of practice.
Advisors served the community as it was. For example, Attorney Poppe’s legal services branched into insurance. Indeed, he was licensed to handle insurance matters, being licensed by the State Investment and Insurance Company in 1886.
Giving back to the community, Poppe served on the City Council from 1894 through 1898, serving as mayor in 1895 and 1896.
Allen Grinstead (1914-1966)
In 1914, Allen Grinstead became an attorney. He was member 1585 of the California Bar Association. He fell in love with and married Emilee Poppe, daughter of R.A. Poppe. Attorney Grinstead lived in Sacramento until his father-in-law died unexpectedly at which time Grinstead relocated to Sonoma with his wife. While in Sonoma, he continued the baton of his father-in-law’s practice of law.
Succeeding in the tradition of serving the community, Attorney Grinstead was a general practitioner practicing in estates and real estate. He also became a justice of the peace, holding Justice Court at the office.
He was instrumental in many things including expanding the footprint of the longtime law office. His footprint did not stop within the office walls, rather it extended well into the community. For example, he inspired the local Italians to clean up the plaza. He also helped with adding the beloved duck pond and starting a local service club, Kiwanis Club, that became the popular place to be.
Following the footsteps of his father-in-law, he served on the city council from 1928 through 1942.
He and his wife had four children. She taught at the high school and continued to serve the community well into her retirement as she would volunteer to grade papers. The amphitheater in the plaza is named after Judge Allen Grinstead.
Robert Parmelee (1956-1981)
After serving in the military in Alaska, Robert Parmelee ventured south for law school. Robert studied law at UC Berkeley, Bolt. He came to the county after law school with job in the clerk’s office and ultimately ended up in the office of the District Attorney where he did trial work. He ended up working with Attorney Grinstead.
It is with abundant gratitude that we honor the life and legacy of Robert Parmelee, who through his commitment to legal excellence and the community we serve continued the great history of the firm. We honor his contribution to clients and the firm. By selecting attorney Thomas Haeuser as his partner, Bob continued the firm’s deep-seated tradition of reliable counsel. The partnership and friendship of Tom and Bob spanned decades, as described HERE
Thomas A. Haeuser (1974-2024)
Upon graduating out of the University of California School of Law at San Francisco, formerly known as Hastings, Attorney Haeuser interviewed with Robert Parmelee, it was a match from the start. Setting up office in 1974, Attorney Haeuser rooted here the growth of which has expanded far throughout the community.
To learn more about Attorney Thomas Haeuser click here
Thomas Haeuser has been a lawyer in Sonoma since 1974. A pillar of the community for 50 years, Tom helps make our town a special place for businesses and families to thrive across multiple generations. He started as an associate with Bob Parmelee and never looked back. HVP lawyers and clients alike rely on Tom’s legacy of influence and learned legal counsel to resolve thorny business issues and assist clients with the transfer of family wealth and business interests.