Education Membership Affiliations

John J Tollefsen

John J Tollefsen



After graduating from the University of Washington School of Business in 1971 with an emphasis in business finance and quantitative methods, Mr. Tollefsen attended Willamette University graduating with a Doctor of Jurisprudence Degree in 1974. He is a certified fraud examiner ( John holds a MCL Degree from Western Seminary a diploma from the International Academy of Apologetics, Evangelism and Human Rights in Strasbourg, France. He is a fellow of the Academy. He earned his Masters of Theology – Christian Philosophy at Trinity Seminary (IN). His awards include Honors at Entrance at Westmont College and American Jurisprudence Award for Creditors Rights at Willamette University. Mr. Tollefsen has a LL.M. (Master of Laws) program in U.S. and Global Business Law from Suffolk University Law School, Boston, Massachusetts. The classroom work was done at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, Hungary (established 1635). He received his second LL.M. in Transnational Commercial Practice from Łazarski University of Warsaw, Poland.

John J Tollefsen graduated from the UW business schoolJohn J Tollefsen graduated from Willamette UniversityJohn J Tollefsen graduated from Suffolk-LawJohn J. Tollefsen attended classes at Eotvos-LorandJohn J. Tollefsen graduated from Lazarski


Professional Memberships:

Mr. Tollefsen was admitted to the Oregon State Bar on September 10, 1974 and to the Federal Bar, US District Court of Oregon on October 21, 1974. He was admitted to the Washington Bar on May 16, 1983; to the Federal Bar, US District Court for the Western District of Washington on June 24, 1983, and to the Federal Bar, US District Court for the Eastern District of Washington on October 3, 1988. Mr. Tollefsen was admitted to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on April 28, 2006, the federal District of Colorado on February 18, 2010, and to the Supreme Court of the United States on February 22, 2010 upon the motion of Dr. John Warwick Montgomery. He was admitted to the New York Bar on October 29, 2010 and the Southern District of New York Federal Court on March 6, 2012. He was also admitted to the Eastern District Federal Court on March 6, 2010. He became a California lawyer on December 10, 2014 and was admitted to the Federal Court for the Central District of California on January 8, 2015. He served six years on the Judicial Recommendation Committee of the Washington State Bar Association. Mr. Tollefsen serves on the Securities Litigation and Business Torts Subcommittees of the Business and Corporate Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association. He is a member of the litigation sections of the Oregon, New York, and Washington bar associations. In 2005, he became a Certified Fraud Examiner ( For four years, he was a member of the Hearing Panel of the Washington State Bar Association assigned to hear disciplinary cases against lawyers. He has served as an elected delegate to the Oregon State Bar House of Delegates from 2007. In 2009, Mr. Tollefsen became a Certified Controls Specialist ( He is a member of the New York Bar Association and the International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists ( He is  a member of the Texas Bar.

Past Affiliations:

Mr. Tollefsen has been a member of the following committees of the American Bar Association, Business Law Section: Federal Regulation of Securities – Broker Dealer Matters; State Regulation of Securities Committee, Securities Litigation Committee of the Litigation Section; and the Legal Office Communications Committee. He was the securities enforcement liaison for the states of Alaska, Montana, Washington, Oregon, and California. He was the state securities liaison for the State of Oregon. Mr. Tollefsen was a member of the Inter-Pacific Bar Association and was on the Commercial Arbitration Panel of the American Arbitration Association to hear securities law disputes. Mr. Tollefsen has former affiliations with the Commercial Law League of America, International Bar Association, Oregon Trial Lawyers Association, and served a three-year term on the Oregon State Bar Unauthorized Practice Committee. For a number of years he was a General Securities Principal (Series 24, Series 7 and Series 63 from October 1983), and a General Financial Principal (Series 27 from October 1988). John is former member of the American Trial Lawyers Association and Washington Trial Lawyers Association. From 2003 to 2010, he served on the Judicial Recommendation Committee of the Washington State Bar which is tasked with reviewing and interviewing candidates for the state Court of Appeals and Supreme Court. He was an elected member of the House of Delegates of the Oregon State Bar from 2008 through 2010.

Public Recognition:

John Tollefsen is “AV” rated by Martindale-Hubbell and is rated “10” by He was named one of the top litigators in Seattle for 2010 by Seattle Metropolitan Magazine. For many years he has been selected for inclusion in Marquis’ Who’s Who in American Law and Who’s Who in the World. He has been featured in numerous press articles relating to his legal representation of clients. He was awarded the 2011 Distinguished Achievement Award by the Pacific Northwest Chapter of Certified Fraud Examiners.

Professional Activities:

Since 1974, John Tollefsen has served as a corporate officer and director of several small corporations, including a public company. He was an instructor of Business Law at Portland Community College. He also taught Business Law in the American Institute of Banking Program and in special programs for small businesses for four years. He is a past president of the Oregon Innovation Network. Mr. Tollefsen was a 1990 delegate on a People to People mission to Budapest, Prague, and Warsaw led by the Solicitor of the Securities and Exchange Commission and a prominent Washington, DC securities lawyer. The delegation consisted of approximately thirty US securities lawyers who met with government officials of these formerly communist countries. He visited the Budapest Stock Exchange and viewed the future Warsaw Stock Exchange. He was a 1991 delegate to Russia including Siberia and Uzbekistan in a high profile visit featured on Soviet Television news. The group met with businesses and government leaders in Moscow, Bukhara, Samarkand and Novosibirsk and included a visit to SIBEX, the Siberian Stock Exchange. He served on a delegation to China in October of 1994 led by the Chair of the ABA Business Law Corporate Counsel Committee. The journey included visits to stock exchanges and businesses in Shanghai and Hong Kong as well as business and government meetings in Guangzhou and Beijing. Mr. Tollefsen wrote and produced a 90-minute video Spotlight on China documenting the trip. He was selected as a delegate from 1987 through 1997 to the Small Business Capital Conference of the Securities and Exchange Commission and served as presenter of Equal Access to Capital in 1990. He has traveled throughout the Pacific Rim on Internet related projects.

Continuing Legal Education Speaker:

Mr. Tollefsen has participated as a speaker in the continuing education programs for lawyers on the topics of securities law, fraud law, Qui Tam, law office management, and the Internet. For more information click the “Speaking and Training” link on the bottom of this page.

Patents and Publications:

Mr. Tollefsen has published several articles in newspapers and magazines and is a seminar speaker on securities and business capital topics. He has spoken several times at continuing legal education seminars to lawyers on Internet related subjects. He has obtained more than thirty trademarks from the United States Patent Office for Internet related products and services. John is the primary contributor to and editor of Fraud Law.

Sample recent legal articles by John:

Understanding the Role of SIPC in Protecting Investors from Fraud (11/13)

The Importance of Being Earnest: An Environmental Whistleblower’s Guide to Protection Under SOx § 806 and Dodd-Frank (12/12).

How the UK Bribery Act can apply to US Businesses (9/12)

Fraudulent Transfers in Washington State (6/12)

Civil Actions under RICO (4/12)

Four Theories of Recovery for Misrepresentations Causing Pecuniary Harm (2/12)

Overview of U.S. Securities Laws (8/11)

Criminal Profiteering: Washington State’s “Baby” RICO Act (2/11)

“General Solicitation” under Federal Securities Laws (8/10)

Overview of Qui Tam Law (6/10)


Mr. Tollefsen has formally studied German, Latin, Koine Greek and ancient Hebrew. His is a competent grammarian and regularly translates from Greek and Hebrew into English with the help of computer software. He works on modern languages during international travels including French, Hebrew, Spanish, and Polish.

Community Activities:

He has served several times as a boys and girls basketball coach. He is an adult Bible teacher . John Tollefsen has served and is serving on non-profit Boards of Directors and has been an advisor to several non-profit organizations. He has been and is active in charitable fundraising and giving. He has been a member and a director of several civic organizations.


John has been married to Lane Ellen Tollefsen since 1981. He has four children and one grandchild. His youngest child completes High School in 2005. He enjoys boating, fishing, golf, bicycling, basketball, and reading. John was born in San Luis Obispo, California and is a dual citizen of the United States and Canada.

More Detail on John J Tollefsen


Legal and Business Experience

Education and Affiliations

Work History

Speaking and Training

Curriculum Vitae – JJT-CV