Wednesday, November 5, 2014

News From Around The Association

Erin Smith Aebel, a partner at Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, and co-chair of the Tampa Health Law Department, has been named the Tampa Bay Business Journal’s 2014 Businesswoman of the Year in the Legal Services category. Aebel is a health care practice co-administrator at the firm.

Jordan D. August has joined Carlton Fields Jorden Burt as an associate in the firm’s business transactions practice group. August practices taxation and estates and trusts at the firm, representing both individuals and entities in the areas of federal and state tax law, tax controversies, estate planning, and probate administration.

Steven M. Berman, a partner at Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, was a featured panelist at the 22nd Annual Southwest Bankruptcy Conference on Ethics: Professionalism. Berman practices as a business bankruptcy litigator at the firm.

Edward J. Carbone, a managing partner at Roig Lawyers, has been elected to a two-year term on the Florida Defense Lawyers Association Board of Directors. Carbone focuses his practice on health care law, appellate litigation, business litigation, and medical malpractice.

Debra Deardourff Faulk was recently promoted to shareholder at GrayRobinson, P.A., in Tampa. Faulk’s practice areas include intellectual property, litigation, regulated products, technology licensing, and trademark.

Rachel Feinman, a shareholder at Hill Ward Henderson, was elected as president of the Gasparilla International Film Festival. Feinman’s practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions along with corporate lending transactions.

T.J. Ferrante, an associate at Carlton Fields Jorden Burt, has been selected to serve as a board member of Junior Achievement of Tampa Bay’s JA Connections. Junior Achievement is a nonprofit organization providing a series of business, economics, and life-skills programs to enhance the education of young people. Ferrante is a member of the firm’s national health care practice group.

Michael L. Forte, a partner at Rumberger, Kirk & Caldwell, P.A., was awarded the 2014 TAQ Award from the Florida Defense Lawyers Association for outstanding service on the editorial board of the Trial Advocate Quarterly. Forte is a litigator who practices in the areas of retail and hospitality, government, and products liability.

Kevin J. Healey has joined Smolker, Bartlett, Schlosser, Loeb & Hinds, P.A., as an associate for the firm. Healey concentrates his practice on state and federal commercial litigation as well as insurance disputes.

Dominique E. Heller, an associate at Wiand Guerra King, has received an “AV Preeminent” rating from Martindale-Hubbell, one of the country’s leading peer-rating services for lawyers. The AV Preeminent is the highest possible rating for professional excellence and ethics that can be awarded. Heller’s practice includes general commercial litigation, regulatory matters, and appeals with a focus on securities and financial services litigation.

Hilary High of Hilary High P.A. in Tampa was one of three mediators in Florida admitted to the Florida Circuit-Civil Mediator Society, an association whose membership consists of Supreme Court-certified circuit-civil mediators who have proven experience in the resolution of civil and commercial disputes.

Michele Leo Hintson, partner in the Tampa office of Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, has been named chair of the Community Advisory Board of the Leadership Council of the Junior League of Tampa Bay. She has also been certified by the Florida Supreme Court as a circuit court mediator, allowing her to mediate civil disputes in the circuit courts throughout Florida. Hintson dedicates her practice to representing businesses, insurance companies, health care organizations, and individuals in all aspects of the dispute resolution process.

Gregg E. Hutt, shareholder at Trenam Kemker, has been certified by The Florida Bar in construction law. Certification is the highest level of recognition by The Florida Bar. Hutt is a member of the construction and commercial litigation practice groups at Trenam Kemker and has been a shareholder since 2012.

Stephen A. Liverpool, an associate at Hill Ward Henderson’s land use and real estate groups, was recently appointed chair of the Young Professionals Group for the Real Estate Investment Council. Liverpool’s practice primarily involves representing clients in all phases of commercial real estate development, including leasing, investment, financing, and purchase and sale transactions.

Erin M. McKenney, an associate for Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, has been elected to the Board of Trustees for Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful, an organization that provides environmental education and volunteer opportunities to the community. McKenney has also been accepted into the Provisional Junior League of Tampa Class for 2014-2015. The Junior League of Tampa is an organization of more than 1,800 women committed to improving communities. McKenney has been with the Shumaker since April, and her practice focuses on health law.

Jeff Paskert, of Mills Paskert Divers in Tampa, has been selected to serve as co-chair on the Insurance and Surety Claims Subcommittee of the American Bar Association’s Construction Litigation Section. Paskert also recently addressed a construction industry conference in Orlando on the topic of proper selection and use of expert witnesses.

Woodrow H. "Woody" Pollack, a Tampa-based shareholder at GrayRobinson, P.A., has been named vice-chair of The Florida Bar Business Law Section Intellectual Property Committee. The Business Law Section of The Florida Bar serves lawyers, law students, and the faculty of its law schools. Pollack is a registered patent attorney who litigates patent, trademark, copyright, and other intellectual property disputes in federal and Florida state courts.

Luis Prats, a shareholder for Carlton Fields Jorden Burt, has been appointed chair of Stetson University’s Board of Trustees. His duties as chair will include serving as spokesperson for the board, acting as chair of the Executive Committee, and appointing committee chairs and vice chairs (as necessary). Prats is a board-certified construction lawyer and has been with the firm for more than 30 years.

Jared J. Perez was named member at Wiand Guerra King. Perez is currently part of the team that represents a court-appointed receiver nominated by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Perez joined Wiand Guerra King in March 2011 and concentrates his practice on complex commercial litigation.

Maria del Carmen Ramos, a Tampa-based attorney for Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, has been selected to Volume III of the Latino American Who’s Who, a biographical publication that distinguishes leading Latino professionals who have attained a recognizable degree of success in their field of endeavor. Ramos joined Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, in 2004 and is a partner practicing immigration and nationality law.

Jacqueline R. A. Root, an associate at Roig Lawyers, was selected as a “Model of Success” by the Dunedin Fine Art Center (DFAC). As part of DFAC’s annual Wearable Art show, prominent young professionals in the community were chosen to model the designs and to be “Models of Success.” The event raised awareness and support DFAC, which provides arts education for the Greater Tampa Bay area.

Jeffrey T. Shear, a shareholder at Gunster law firm, has been elected to the board of directors of the Real Estate Investment Council of Tampa Bay. Shear is a real estate attorney with experience in health care law whose practice involves the representation of developers and institutional investors in commercial and residential development.

Robert Shimberg, a shareholder at Hill Ward Henderson, was elected chair of Metropolitan Ministries. Metropolitan Ministries cares for the homeless and those at risk of becoming homeless in the Tampa Bay area. Shimberg focuses his practice on commercial litigation, corporate compliance, and governmental relations.

John V. Trujillo Jr. has joined Smoak, Chistolini & Barnett, PLLC, as a partner. Trujillo focuses his practice on the litigation of commercial debt collection, judgment enforcement, judgment collection, contract disputes, and asset/business purchase fraud matters. 

Miriam Velez of Valkenburg & Velez, P.A., was elected president of the Tampa Hispanic Bar Association for the 2015 calendar year.  Miriam, along with the board of directors, will be sworn in by Chief Justice Jorge Labarga at the 8th Annual Scholarship Gala Dinner.

Peter W. Zinober, shareholder at Greenberg Traurig LLC, has been reappointed for an additional one-year term as Employer Co-Chair of the ABA's Section of Labor and Employment’s Human Trafficking Task Force. Zinober focuses his practice on jury and non-jury litigation in state and federal courts of employment discrimination and civil rights.

The Law Office of Gary S. Dolgin
has moved to the Bank of Tampa building at 601 Bayshore Blvd., Suite 150, Tampa FL 33606. The offices can be reached via telephone at 813-223-3200 or email at

Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP’s Leadership Shumaker program donated $1,700 to the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. Leadership Shumaker also donated food and other items to benefit animals in need.

Smoak & Chistolini, LLC, has combined with Tampa law firm Barnett & Associates, P.A. The consolidation evidences Smoak & Chistolini’s continued growth and complements the firm’s growing presence throughout Florida. The firm will be known as Smoak, Chistolini & Barnett, PLLC.