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North Bay Business Journal

Monday, December 10, 2012, 6:55 am

Former Brown Holder partners launch new St. Helena firm; Zainer grows in Napa Valley

Announcement marks latest change for area firms

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    ST. HELENA — Two partners from the former Brown Holder Alfaro & Co. have announced the formation of a new accounting practice in St. Helena, with plans to rename the firm’s former office as Blyth Warner and Associates LLP.

    The group is currently finalizing its new branding, which is expected to be unveiled this month, said Warren Warner, partner at the new practice and former partner at Brown Holder Alfaro. Bret Blyth, also a former partner at Brown Holder Alfaro, joined Mr. Warner as partner at the new firm.

    Bret Blyth and Warren Warner

    The announcement is the latest development in a recent shakeup for the region’s accounting firms, following the move of seven individuals from Brown Holder Alfaro to Santa Rosa-based Zainer Rinehart Clarke CPAs in November. Former partners Dale Brown, Robert Holder and Danielle Sandoval left the firm to help launch the St. Helena office for Zainer Rinehart Clark, and former managing partner Kevin Alfaro left Brown Holder Alfaro earlier this year to become chief financial officer at Caymus Vineyards in Rutherford, near St. Helena.

    Byth Warner’s office will include six accountants and two administrative staff, building on the office’s 60-year history in serving the wine industry, Mr. Warner said. Other former Brown Holder Alfaro staff joining the new firm include Stacy Madigan, Amy Muscio and Grace Kinney.

    “We are going to focus on tax work,” Mr. Warner said, though the firm will also be ramping up offerings in family office services, general ledger, accounting and write-up services.

    The new St. Helena office for Zainer Rinehart Clarke is the third for the firm, which also operates an office in Sonoma. Staff spread their time between the offices, and the practice is expected to grow to 30 individuals before the end of the year, said Meredith Rennie, director at the firm.

    The former Brown Holder Alfaro will continue to exist for file and client transition purposes, according to the announcement.

    Other changes in the Napa Valley accounting landscape this year included Moss Adams LLP‘s August acquisition of Rabanal & Smith LLP in the city of Napa, bringing on the firm’s founding partners and giving Moss Adams a physical footprint in the region.

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