Twitchell and Rice, LLP
Twitchell and Rice, LLP
Twitchell and Rice, LLP  
Twitchell and Rice, LLP  
Twitchell and Rice, LLP
Twitchell and Rice, LLP
Twitchell and Rice, LLP
Twitchell and Rice, LLP

Maurice F. Twitchell and Burton J. Twitchell

Maurice Fremont Twitchell


Maurice F. Twitchell

Maurice F. Twitchell was the eldest son of Cap Twitchell and was born in 1930.  He attended local schools graduating from Santa Maria High School.  He went on to attend and graduate from Stanford School of Law in 1955.    Maurice Twitchell returned to Santa Maria that same year  to work for Twitchell and Rice after the premature death of his father.   As a very new, young lawyer, Maurice did his best to fill his father's shoes.  Through hard work and perseverence, Maurice gained experience and knowledge necessary to keep the law firm running.  In addition, Maurice inherited his father's interest in water law, water conservation, and the newly-constructed Twitchell Dam.  Maurice served on the Santa Maria Valley Water Conservation District for many years, acting as its secretary from 1958 through 1996.  Twitchell and Rice, LLP acted as legal counsel for the Santa Maria Valley Water Conservation District from 1958 through 1996.

In 1999, Maurice was honored by the Santa Barbara County Bar Association with its Lifetime Achievement Award.   Maurice was a man of his word.  He believed the practice of law was an honorable profession and built his practice on that premise.   His intelligence, humility and sense of humor, combined with his sense of honor made him a very approachable and well-liked lawyer on the Central Coast. 

Maurice practiced law at Twitchell and Rice, LLP, from 1955 until two weeks before he passed away on December 3, 2000, at the age of 70. 

Burton James Twitchell


Burton James Twitchell

Burton J. Twitchell was born in 1933, attended local schools graduating from Santa Maria High School.  Like his brother, Maurice, he attended Stanford School of Law graduating in 1958.   Burton returned to Santa Maria to practice law alongside Maurice and Fred Goble, a short time after their father, Cap Twitchell, passed away. 

Burton's practice was largely devoted to family law matters, many of which were pro bono clients.  He treated his clients with understanding and respect through difficult situations.  Although his practice focused mainly on family law, he was not quick to urge clients to divorce.  Rather, he counseled his clients to try to work things out if possible.  One client related that when he came to Burton to file for divorce from his wife, Burton told him to go home, buy flowers for his wife every night for a month, and to come back and see him after the month passed.  Burton told him that if he still wanted to file for divorce, Burton would do so.  Although the client never returned to Burton for the divorce, he is still a client of this firm, and he is still married to his wife.  Burton considered such to be the successful practice of law.

Burton passed away suddenly on April 5, 2000, at the age of 67.  He was honored posthumously by the Santa Barbara County Bar Association with its Lifetime Achievement Award in the year 2000.

Brothers

Burton and Maurice practiced law in adjacent offices for over 40 years.  They returned to Santa Maria as young lawyers to fill the vacancy left by their father, Cap Twitchell, after his untimely death.   They worked with Fred Goble and William Rice to bring stability back to the firm, which they accomplished.  They persevered and the law firm now known as Twitchell and Rice, LLP has continuously served some of the earliest families to settle in the Santa Maria Valley.

It is hard to say if Burton and Maurice were better brothers, better friends or better law partners.  Burton could often be seen standing in Maurice's office door way, first thing in the morning, discussing with Maurice politics, law, or who played the worse golf game.   The loss of both Burton and Maurice in the year 2000 was a blow to the firm, not only professionally, but personally, as these two brothers have been greatly missed. 

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