The firm was founded in 1984 by Steve Mura, who, since 1992, has served as a Whatcom County Superior Court judge. Mr. Mura practiced business law, municipal law, community association law, and litigation—all of which remain core areas of our firm’s practice. In 1987, Frank Chmelik joined Mr. Mura after having obtained extensive trial experience as a U.S. Army JAG Corps officer and an associate at a large Seattle law firm.
In 1993, Richard Davis left one of Seattle’s largest law firms and joined the firm. His expertise in litigation, in general, and construction disputes in particular, proved to be a valuable addition to the firm. Over the next several years, Mr. Chmelik and Mr. Davis managed the growth and development of the firm, refining our municipal and business practices while adding estate planning to the firm’s practice areas. Mr. Davis is now the managing partner for litigation matters, and Mr. Chmelik manages the firm’s business practice.
In 1994, the firm completed the renovation of a historic brick warehouse in the Railroad Avenue business district of downtown Bellingham, making it a distinctive feature in the downtown renaissance.
The firm continued to represent an increasing number of special purpose municipal governments, contractors, businesses, and community associations throughout Whatcom County and Western Washington. In 1998, Jon Sitkin, a real estate and land use attorney, joined the firm, and the shareholders adopted the name Chmelik Sitkin & Davis P.S. Mr. Sitkin was then a well-established land use attorney. Since 1998, our firm’s land use and real estate practices have developed at a deliberate and steady pace.
During the last twenty years, our firm has consistently and steadily focused our practice on issues related to municipal and business clients. Maintaining this focus has allowed us to develop and offer sophisticated, yet cost-effective, legal services to our clients without the “big firm” experience of costly representation, inconvenient access, and overstaffing of projects.