A Message from William Dymond, Jr
President, CEO and Managing Partner
The first half of 2012 has flown by. In the past several months we have seen heightened business activity, which is good news for everyone. Amid the continuing pressures of a slow-to-recover economic environment, we took on challenging new projects across the state and country and accomplished important goals on behalf of our clients. Check out some representative highlights.
As our clients’ needs shift, so do we. Our Distressed Real Estate Solutions Group has been offering seminars with practical tips on the acquisition and sale of distressed properties. A new year is often accompanied by new legislation, and the attorneys in our Governmental Approvals/Land Use, Health Care and Labor & Employment groups are advising clients on the legislative changes impacting their businesses. Our Immigration practice has expanded in response to our clients’ needs for advice in this increasingly complex area of federal administrative law. Some of our clients are rethinking their business goals and opportunities, and the attorneys in our Capital Markets & Technology Group are advising clients on issues ranging from capital raising and entity formation to corporate growth and expansion.
Currently, we represent many of the largest companies in Central Florida, both privately and publicly held, for their corporate legal needs, as well as a number of middle market businesses that are driving the growth of Central Florida. Our corporate attorneys have closed over $300 million in transactions in the last 12 months for middle market companies – a testament to the importance of this sector to our economy. We are also working closely with the University of Central Florida’s “incubator” program as it supports the rapid growth of Orlando’s high tech corridor.
Among the pressures our clients are facing is the need to protect their intellectual property, whether their name, the “look and feel” of their brand or even their customer lists. This growing need continues to fuel the expansion of our Intellectual Property Services Group, which helps clients procure, protect and leverage their intellectual property assets – and protect the software, hardware and Internet technologies integral to their businesses. In recent months we welcomed:
- Jon Gibbs, whose intellectual property practice includes intellectual property protection, licensing, litigation, auditing, and due diligence. He holds a bachelor's degree in microbiology and cell science from University of Florida, and a law degree from University of Toledo College of Law. Jon is also a United States Coast Guard licensed Captain.
- Art Sims, whose broad practice encompasses corporate, sports and entertainment, hospitality and gaming, in addition to intellectual property matters. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Morehouse College and a law degree from Cornell University Law School. Subsequently, he has studied both Molecular Biology and Hospitality at the University of Central Florida College of Health and Sciences and the University of Central Florida Rosen School of Hospitality.
- Courtney Dunn, who has been working with large companies as well as start-ups, on trademarks, patents and copyrights. She earned her undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Florida and her law degree from Stetson.
Many of the industries in which our clients are involved – banking, construction, franchising, hotels, manufacturing, restaurants, retail, sports, and technology – cross state and national borders. As a founding member of Meritas, an international network of more than 170 full-service law firms with over 7,000 lawyers in 60+ countries, we are able to assist our clients virtually around the globe.
Our attorneys continue to receive widespread recognition both locally and beyond Florida:
- The Orlando Business Journal highlighted Terry Young as one of Central Florida’s most sought after attorneys and named long-time community leader Aaron Gorovitz as “Most Influential Businessman” for 2011 in the legal industry.
- Randi Fitzgerald was recently named "Orlando Administrative/ Regulatory Lawyer of the Year," and "Orlando's Government Relations Lawyer of the Year" for 2012 by Best Lawyers. She was recognized by Chambers USA as a "top legal practitioner" in real estate, and was nominated for the Chambers USA 'Women in Law' award.
- The firm was recognized as one of the "Best Law Firms" by U.S. News & World Report & Best Lawyers in 38 practices and was named as one of the top nationally rated law firms in the United States in Fortune Magazine’s “2012 Top Ranked Law Firm” list – comprised of the top 1% of firms nationwide.
I myself am honored to have been appointed to the boards of Enterprise Florida, the economic development organization for the state of Florida, Space Florida, the state agency working to foster the growth and development of a sustainable and world-leading space industry in Florida, and Visit Orlando, one of the driving forces behind attracting convention and leisure travelers to Central Florida. It is my privilege to serve these and several other organizations that work hard towards the betterment of the communities in which we live, work and play.
As important as any other accolade we receive, we are proud of our unparalleled commitment to the community. Every year we support over 200 civic and philanthropic activities, whether through financial contributions, leadership roles or one-on-one volunteer engagement by our employees. We are honored to be counted, year after year, among the “Top 25 Giving Organizations” for the Heart of Florida United Way Campaign. Even in the face of the challenging economic conditions we have all faced over the past several years, we have not compromised that commitment.
Nor have we or will we compromise our commitment to our clients. To help clients control their legal costs, we have upgraded our own technologies, to ensure improved performance and communication. If you’re not receiving our many newsletters and client alerts, let us know. You’ll find them posted here.
I encourage you to come back to our website often, as we are continually posting new information, not just about our attorneys and areas in which we practice, but also about legal and business issues impacting you. We even have our own YouTube channel, offering highlights from numerous seminars, blogs and news stories that you might find interesting.
Our imperative has always been to support our clients’ business goals. I’d like to think that we have channeled our energies into serving our clients well…seizing initiatives, solving problems, mitigating risks. If we haven’t, tell me. If we have, know that we will not rest on our laurels but will remain focused on you and your business. Let me know how we can help you. My direct dial is (407) 418-6342.