John Sestak with Jennings, Strouss & Salmon Attorneys at Law in Phoenix, Arizona

John "Jack" G. Sestak, Jr. Member

P: 602.262.5827
F: 602.495.2653
L: Phoenix

Mr. Sestak is an attorney with more than 35 years of experience in the areas of general business and commercial litigation and transactions. He is experienced in corporate, administrative, creditors' rights, securities (litigation), real estate, employment, professional negligence and environmental matters, with an emphasis on litigation and disputes in these areas. He has appeared extensively before federal and state courts and administrative agencies.

Mr. Sestak has represented small, medium and large companies in all areas of business and business litigation. He has handled general contract disputes, shareholder and partner disputes, commercial litigation and arbitration proceedings. He has represented owners and contractors in disputes and lawsuits involving construction matters, has represented employers in employment litigation and EEOC matters, has litigated cases involving confidentiality and non-solicitation agreements, and has represented professionals, including law firms, accounting firms, engineers and architects, in negligence actions.

In addition, Mr. Sestak handles business and commercial transactions of all kinds, providing counsel and advice on business planning as well as dispute resolution. He has also represented major financial institutions in dispute resolution and litigation matters.

Areas of Focus

  • General and Commercial Litigation and Transactions
  • Corporate
  • Administrative
  • Creditors' Rights
  • Construction Law and Litigation
  • Real Estate
  • Employment
  • Securities Litigation
  • Professional Negligence
  • Environmental

Representative Engagements

Litigation Matters

  • Has handled jury trials and court trials in the Superior Court of Arizona, the U.S. District Court and the U.S. Bankruptcy Court; appeals in the Arizona Court of Appeals, the Arizona Supreme Court, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; proceedings before administrative agencies, including the EEOC, Securities and Exchange Commission, the Arizona Corporation Commission, the Arizona Registrar of Contractors, the Arizona Department of Insurance, the Arizona Department of Liquor Licenses and Control, the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, and the Arizona Departmentof Financial Institutions
  • Represented law firms, accounting firms, architects, engineers, and other professionals in various litigation matters, including the defense of class action securities fraud and civil racketeering cases, breach of contract, professional liability, and director and officer cases
  • Represented national lending and financial institutions in lender liability cases and cases involving alleged violations of federal and state statutes and regulations
  • Represented contractors in cases involving lawsuits both against subcontractors and general contractors and in cases on behalf of subcontractors against general contractors and owners
  • Has handled complex arbitration matters before the American Arbitration Association, and before arbitrators appointed under the Arizona statutes. Such arbitration proceedings included a breach of contract action against a national retailer on behalf of the operator of one of its contracted retail merchandise stores. Another involved claims brought by a minority stockholder relative to the value of the stockholder's share following a merger, and the validity of option and other stock and contract rights
  • Defended a security alarm company that was sued by a customer who had suffered a burglary in which the burglars cut the wires of the alarm system, thereby rendering the system inoperable at the time of the burglary. The plaintiff made claims for breach of contract, misrepresentation and negligent representation, seeking damages of approximately $600,000. Summary judgment was obtained on some of the claims and the matter proceeded to a jury trial on the balance of the claims. A jury verdict was obtained in favor of the alarm company after a two-week trial and an award of attorneys' fees against the plaintiff was made
  • Represented national professional firm in U.S. District Court on claims of wrongful termination, age discrimination, breach of contract, and breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing
  • Represented attorneys in litigation with other attorneys and in civil suits as well as matters before the State Bar of Arizona
  • Defended international company in products liability and negligence cases

Class Action Litigation

  • Has been involved in a variety of class action lawsuits in the state and federal courts, including the defense of professionals in claims brought by investors relative to bond issuances which went into default, and the defense of an international company in several class action cases involving products liability, negligence and fraud claims. The involvement in such cases encompassed class issue discovery and substantive discovery, and preparation and argument of motions in connection with class certification issues, summary judgment and jurisdictional issues
  • Represented a national automobile finance company in class action claims involving allegations of violations of the Consumer Leasing Act
  • Represented a national lending institution and defended two adversary proceedings in the United States Bankruptcy Court brought by the borrowers who defaulted on their loans, filed bankruptcy to prevent foreclosure/trustee’s sales, and then brought adversary proceedings against the lender. In one case, summary judgment was obtained on behalf of the lender. In the second case, a settlement was entered into under which the borrower brought current all payments, costs and interest. The loan was reinstated and stipulated to a dismissal of the adversary proceeding
  • Represented a national banking institution in a borrower default situation involving a suit for deficiency balance with regard to commercial property following a trustee sale. The case included counterclaims for lender liability. Summary judgment motions brought by both parties were prepared and presented, some granted in part and some denied in part. Shortly prior to trial, the case was settled

Corporate and Transactional Matters

  • Represented a regional petroleum products company in several acquisitions, primarily asset acquisitions, which involved the preparation of documentation and negotiation of the actual purchase agreements, the real estate aspects, and the non-competition and consulting agreement aspects
  • Represented a variety of clients in other business acquisitions, mergers and combinations. These have included the statutory merger of corporations, and the stock acquisitions and sales of businesses in various industries, including the security alarm industry, cosmetics industry, retail and wholesale products industries

Labor and Employment Matters

  • Has assisted clients with a variety of labor and employment matters, including advice and counsel to employers in employment disputes and employment termination situations, and advice and counsel in connection with employee policies, procedures and manuals
  • Has handled matters involving claims brought in state and federal courts for wrongful termination, breach of employment agreements, age discrimination and sexual harassment. Such representation includes the handling of such matters before the EEOC and the Arizona Civil Rights Division
  • Has advised and counseled on issues involving employment agreements, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, confidentiality and trade secret agreements.

  • Has written, negotiated and litigated issues involving employment agreements, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, confidentiality and trade secret agreements.


Articles and Publications


Presentations

  • Speaker, "Employee Issues", Executives' Association of Greater Phoenix (August 21, 2014)

  • Speaker, "Cyber Liability", Wick Pilcher Insurance, (April 2010)


Digital Media


Community Activities

  • Phoenix Sister Cities Board of Directors

  • Executives Association of Greater Phoenix, Board of Directors, Past President
  • City of Phoenix Commission on the Economy, 2001-2004
  • Silent Witness, Board of Directors
  • City of Phoenix 301 Committee (Block Watch Oversight, created by Phoenix City Counsel, 1993-1996)

Honors, Appointments and Awards

  • AV® PreeminentTM Peer Review Rated

  • Listed, The Best Lawyers in America (2006-2017) in the categories of Administrative/Regulatory Law, Commercial Litigation, Corporate Law, Litigation - Banking and Finance, Litigation - Construction, Litigation - Labor and Employment, Litigation - Real Estate

  • Listed, Southwest Super Lawyers (2013-2016) in the categories of General Litigation, Construction Litigation: Business, Business Litigation

  • AB Top Lawyer, Commercial Litigation, Arizona Business Magazine (2009-2010)


Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association
    Litigation Section, Member
  • State Bar of Arizona
    Trial Practice Section, Member
    Corporate, Banking & Business Section, Member
    Employment Section, Member
    Member, Construction Section
  • Maricopa County Bar Association
    Member
  • Superior Court Civil Study Committee
    Member
  • Defense Research Institute
    Member
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America
    Member

Admitted to Practice

  • Arizona, 1974

Court Admission

  • U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, 1974
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1981
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1980

Education

  • J.D., Vanderbilt University Law School, 1973
    Vanderbilt Law Review, Associate Editor
  • B.A., Vanderbilt University, Economics, History & Political Science, 1970
    Honor Council