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Voluntary Bar Leaders Annual Conference

July 14-15, 2023

W Fort Lauderdale
401 N. Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd.
Fort Lauderdale, FL. 33304

Voluntary Bar Leaders Conference Logo for 2023

Join your fellow voluntary bar association leaders at the hippest address on the beach!

Daily Schedule

Friday, July 14, 2023

Time Agenda Item Location
9:00 – 9:25 a.m.


with Amelia Beard, Beth Feder, Kyleen Hinkle, President-Elect Roland Sanchez-Medina Jr.

Great Room
9:30 – 10:30 a.m.


with Dr. Keita Joy, CEO of Success Uncensored Coaching

Great Room
10:30 – 11:00 a.m.

Networking Break

Refreshments Available

Sponsor Hub
11:00 – 11:50 a.m.


with Melissa Byers

Great Room
Noon – 1:30 p.m.

“The Big Leap” Leaders Lunch and Next Level Bar Stuff

with Paige Greenlee, Alice Sum, Hon. Suzanne Van Wyk, and Sia Baker-Barnes

Great Room
1:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Networking Break

Sponsor Hub
2:00 – 2:50 p.m.


A – KEEPING THE BOAT ROCKING: Setting the Sail For A Successful Transition

with Grace Yang, Paige Greenlee, and Amelia Beard

Great Room
B – THE PLANNING PLAYLIST: Moving Your Bar Forward with Focus and Efficiency

with Jason Berger and Carla Tharp Brown

Studio One
C – IN SYNC WITH TOMORROW’S LAWYER: Connecting With The Legal Profession’s Next Wave

with YLD President Anisha Patel and YLD President-Elect Ashlea Edwards

Studio Three
2:50 – 3:20 p.m.

Networking Break

Hot and Cold Beverages

Sponsor Hub
3:20 – 4:10 p.m.


A – MONEY, MONEY, MONEY! Budgets and Financial Best Practices

with John Kynes, Lauren Baugh and Sheri Fiske Schultz

Great Room
B – SHE WORKS HARD FOR THE MONEY: Smart Strategies for Managing Debt

with Stephen Strum, and John Faircloth

Studio One
C – ALL THAT JAZZ! Affordable Tech for Your Bar or Law Office

with Craig Shoup and Braulio Rosa

Studio Three
4:10 – 4:30 p.m.

Networking Break

Sponsor Hub
4:30 – 5:20 p.m.


with President Scott Westheimer and President-Elect Roland Sanchez-Medina Jr.

Gift baskets giveaway

Great Room
6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

The Grande “Chill Out” Reception

A Time to Uncork and Unwind

Sponsor Hub

Saturday, July 15, 2023

Time Agenda Item Location
8:00 – 8:50 a.m.


Sponsor Hub
9:00 – 9:50 a.m.


Inspiring Membership Growth Through the Aerosmith Approach

with G.C. Murray

Great Room
10:00 – 10:30 a.m.


Sponsor Hub
10:30 – 11:20 a.m.



with Marie McCorkle, Yineth Sanchez Aslan and Brandon Sapp

Great Room
B – WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM OUR FRIENDS: Staffed Bar Listening Session

with President Scott Westheimer, President-Elect Roland Sanchez-Medina Jr. and Josh Doyle

Studio One
C – MAKING MORE MUSIC TOGETHER: Enhancing Access to Justice

with Sarah Barker, Geraldine M. DeBianchi, Jeff Hittleman and Victoria Sexton.

Studio Three
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.


with Mark Eiglarsh

Gift baskets giveaway


Great Room


Yineth Sanchez Aslan

Yineth Sanchez Aslan


Yineth Sanchez Aslan, a first-generation Colombian American, works as staff counsel for GEICO General Insurance Co. at the Law Office of George L. Cimballa III in Fort Lauderdale. Prior to that, Aslan worked as an assistant state attorney at the Broward State Attorney’s Office handling hundreds of misdemeanor and felony criminal cases. Presently, she serves as a governor for the 17th Judicial Circuit on The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division Board of Governors and as the president of the Broward County Hispanic Bar Association. Aslan has received numerous awards and recognitions including the 2020 Top 40 Under 40 and the 2021 Hispanic Woman of Distinction awards. She received her bachelor’s degrees in legal studies and philosophy from Nova Southeastern University (NSU) and her law degree from NSU Shepard Broad College of Law.

Sarah Barker

Sarah Barker


Sarah Barker is the supervising attorney for the Senior Citizen Law Project at Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida Inc. (CCLA), which provides free civil legal services to low-income seniors 60 and older, caregivers, and grandparents 55 and older in the Broward County area. She has been an attorney with the project since 2009. She has represented senior clients in mortgage foreclosure defense, condominium foreclosure defense, consumer debt defense, Chapter 13 bankruptcy, elder abuse and exploitation, including obtaining restraining orders, and also has represented senior clients in complex real estate fraud litigation.

Sia Baker-Barnes

Sia Baker-Barnes


Rosalyn “Sia” Baker-Barnes is a partner at Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley in West Palm Beach and a candidate for The Florida Bar President Elect for 2024-2025. For more than 20 years, she has successfully pursued justice for victims in personal injury, medical negligence, and product liability cases. Baker-Barnes is Board-Certified in Civil Trial law by The Florida Bar. She is a member of the International Society of Barristers and the American Board of Trial Advocates, and is the chairperson of her firm’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee.

Committed to professionalism, civility, and service, Baker-Barnes serves on The Florida Bar Board of Governors, representing the 15th Judicial Circuit. She chairs the board’s Legislation Committee and serves on the board’s Executive and Strategic Planning committees. Previously, she chaired the Program Evaluation Committee and co-chaired the board’s COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery Task Force. She also serves on the executive council of the Trial Lawyers Section of the Bar. Baker-Barnes was the 95th president of the Palm Beach County Bar Association, and the first black woman to serve in this role. She is the co-founder and past president of the Palm Beach County Sheree Davis Cunningham Black Women Lawyers’ Association and a past advisor for the F. Malcolm Cunningham Sr. Bar Association. She is recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the Best Lawyers in America. Other notable awards and honors include the Henry T. Latimer Diversity Award, The Florida Bar President’s Award, PBC FAWL’s Pariente Award, the ADL’s Jurisprudence Award, and the Palm Beach County Bar’s Judge Edward Rodgers Diversity Award. Baker-Barnes earned both her law and bachelor’s degrees from Florida State University.

Lauren Baugh

Lauren Baugh


Lauren Baugh has served as the executive director of the Lee County Bar Association since 2019. While her career has not always been in marketing, fundraising and legal networking, this is her niche. Her background includes real estate, mortgage lending, property management and bookkeeping. Baugh is the chair of the Philanthropy and Fundraising Committee of the Fort Myers YMCA, United Way of Lee, Hendry and Glades Allocations Team, and the Florida Bar Voluntary Bar Leaders Committee. She is a graduate of Bishop Verot High School and Edison Community College.

Amelia Beard

Amelia Beard


Amelia Beard is a partner at Moorhead Law Group and the managing attorney of the firm’s Santa Rosa Beach office. Her practice includes real estate development and transactions; probate and estate planning; and civil litigation. Beard is highly involved in the legal profession through service to the Florida Bar and local bar organizations. Currently, Amelia serves as vice chair of The Florida Bar’s Civil Procedure Rules Committee and chair of the Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee. She also serves on the Bar’s Military & Veterans Affairs  and Annual Convention committees. She is a fellow of the Florida Bar’s Wm. Reese Smith Leadership Academy, Class VII.  Previously, Beard served two terms as president of the Walton County Bar Association. Beard is an adviser to the board of SOF Missions, a nonprofit organization that provides veteran resources and assistance for warriors struggling with PTSD and challenges from military service.  She also serves as VP of Development on the board of directors of the Ronald McDonald House of Northwest Florida Charities. Beard received her J.D. from the John Marshall Law School in Atlanta.

Jason Berger


Jason Berger owns and maintains a family law and estate planning practice, proudly serving the people of the Treasure Coast of Florida. He has personally tried and/or supervised more than 100 jury trials. His trial experiences include wrongful death, first-degree murder, DUI manslaughter, and sex crimes. He proudly served the people of the State of Florida as an assistant state attorney for 11 years.

Berger was appointed by the Governor to serve on the 19th Judicial Circuit Nominating Commission. He was appointed by the chief judge for the U.S. Southern District of Florida to serve on the Federal Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel, and he was twice appointed by the president of the Florida State Senate to serve on the State of Florida Commission on Ethics. Berger has served as a director/officer of multiple non-profit organizations including president, Martin County Bar Association; president, Major B Harding American Inn of Court; chair, Florida Bar Standing Committee on Professionalism; and commissioner, State of Florida Commission on Ethics and numerous others.

Berger has been honored with various distinguishing awards including the Martin County Bar Association George Bush Jr. Professionalism Award, the Florida Bar President’s Pro Bono Service Award (19th Judicial Circuit), and the M.A.D.D. Outstanding DUI Prosecutor of the Year Award.

Berger graduated from the University of Florida, College of Law with honors. He serves as a trustee for the University of Florida Law Center and the Martin County Alumni associations.

Carla Tharp Brown

Carla Tharp Brown


Carla Tharp Brown has served as the executive director of the Palm Beach County Bar Association since September 2016. She has spent more than 20 years as a bar association leader in Florida and Georgia. Prior to joining the Palm Beach County Bar Association, she served as director of the Atlanta Bar Association’s Lawyer Referral Service and Modest Means Programs. Under her leadership, the association won the American Bar Association’s Cindy Raisch Award for the impact it made in the Atlanta pro bono community.

She served as a consultant for the American Bar Association’s Program of Assistance and Review Initiative and a mentor for the Truancy Intervention Project in Atlanta for several years. She is an active member of the National Association of Bar Executives, the Conference of Metropolitan Bar Associations, and the Florida Society of Association Executives.

Brown received her paralegal certificate from the National Association of Paralegals and earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration with a concentration in marketing from Ohio University.

Melissa Byers

Melissa Byers


Melissa Byers has served 10 years as the executive director of the St. Petersburg Bar Association, a voluntary bar association of 1,200 members. Prior to that, she served as the executive director of the Police Athletic League. Known for financial/business acumen, Byers is also passionate about wellness. During her tenure at the St. Pete Bar she introduced the wellness theme “Healthy, Happy, Holistic Attorneys” to combat the staggering statics associated with the high rates of suicide, depression, and substance abuse in the legal profession. As a result, The Florida Bar presented the first Health & Wellness Award to the SPBA in 2018. The Florida Bar also awarded the Marshall R. Cassedy Sr. Executive Director of the Year Leadership award to Byers in 2020.

Byers’ professional background includes working at the world-renowned Golden Door Resort and Spa in San Diego. At the Golden Door, Melissa worked with a wide range of professional clientele including “Good Morning America” co-anchor Joan Lunden, owner of Mondavi wine Robert Mondavi; and Barbara Walters, among many others. She then relocated to Los Angeles to privately train actress Karyn Parsons from “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air” at Warner Brothers’ Studios.

Byers is a sought-after wellness speaker around the state. Speaking engagements have included law firm strategic planning sessions, Raymond James Financial, Stetson College of Law, Orange County Bar Association, Manatee County Bar Association, the 12th Circuit State Attorney’s Office, etc. She has also been a featured speaker at the 2018 National Association of Law Judiciary Annual Conference; and the 2019, 2021, and 2022 Florida Bar Voluntary Bar Leaders Conference. She will be a featured presenter at the 2023 Life Over Death Florida Public Defender Association conference.

Geraldine M. DeBianchi

Geraldine M. DeBianchi


Geraldine M. DeBianchi is the Mobile Justice Squad (MJS) attorney who came to at Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida (CCLA) with nearly 30 years of experience in private practice. As MJS attorney, DeBianchi serves residents of Broward County, 60 and older who are homebound or face challenges with transportation by visiting them in the MJS Van – a fully-equipped law office on wheels. The MJS Project has been recognized in publications within the state and around the nation. Most recently, CCLA’s MJS Project was recognized by 211 Broward as the 2023 Nonprofit of the Year in the Innovation category. It is one of only a few mobile law offices in the country.

Josh Doyle

Joshua E. Doyle is the executive director of The Florida Bar


Josh Doyle is executive director of The Florida Bar, a position he has held since succeeding Jack Harkness in 2017. The Bar is charged with assisting the Florida Supreme Court with the regulation the state’s 111,000 licensed attorneys. Prior to this, Doyle worked for the federal government and for a private law firm.  He is a proud graduate of Florida State University.

Ashlea Edwards



Ashlea Edwards is an employment attorney at Akerman LLP in Jacksonville, where she focuses her practice on employment litigation and counseling. She represents employers in a variety of matters, including harassment, discrimination, whistleblowing, employee leave and reasonable accommodations, wrongful termination, retaliation, and wage and hour violations. Her practice also focuses on defending clients before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the U.S. Department of Labor, and other administrative agencies. Edwards provides a range of support to clients, including corporate governance counseling and investigations, policy interpretation and implementation, and reviewing and drafting of employment handbooks along with employment related agreements.

Throughout her career, Edwards has remained deeply involved in many local, state, and national bar associations. She is the president-elect of The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division, where she has served in an elected capacity for the last seven years, a member of The Florida Bar Board of Governors, and a past president of the Jacksonville Bar Association Young Lawyers Section.

Edwards received her J.D. from Florida Coastal School of Law. She received her B.A. in Spanish and B.S. in Psychology from Louisiana State University at Baton Rogue.

Mark Eiglarsh

Mark Eiglarsh


Mark Eiglarsh, a formerly unhappy guy, made a career out of solving everyone’s problems but his own. Now, this successful criminal defense attorney, television and radio on-air legal expert, adjunct law professor, devoted husband, and proud father has reclaimed his happiness. Eiglarsh has passionately made it his life mission to share with others how they can lead happy, healthy and successful lives, in spite of whatever challenging circumstances they may be facing. His unique formula causes audience members to have reduced stress, increased sales and productivity, and better tools to assist in obtaining their goals. He dazzles audiences with his infectious enthusiasm, unique humor, and heartfelt authenticity. Eiglarsh, a transformative speaker, provides people accessible tools to overcome stress, focus their mind, and improve their relationships at work and home. He’s guaranteed to make you laugh and feel inspired.

John Faircloth



John Faircloth is a director of Investments for Riverwalk Wealth Advisors, the Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. As an accomplished investment leader, Faircloth has over 25 years of experience in financial planning, wealth management, and client service initiatives. He is committed to building long-lasting relationships, leveraging best-in-class research, and helping clients make the most of their investments. With his expertise and thoughtful analysis, Faircloth helps clients navigate the complexities of the market and make strategic decisions that drive success.

Beth Feder


Beth Feder is a partner at Winston Law Firm in Davie where she practices civil trial work in the areas of personal injury and family law. She is admitted to practice law in Florida and New York, as well as the Federal courts in the Southern District of New York. She is a member of the Florida Association of Women Lawyers, Broward County Women Lawyers Association, Broward County Bar Association, Broward County Justice Association, Florida Justice Association and American Bar Association. She currently serves on the board of directors of the Broward County Women Lawyers Association, is the chair of the Mindfulness Committee of the Broward County Bar Association and was recently named co-chair of The Florida Bar’s Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee. She is a proud Guardian Ad Litem and was named the 2018 Guardian Ad Litem of the year for the 17th Judicial Circuit. Feder is a graduate of the New York Law School and Rutgers College.

Paige A. Greenlee

Paige Greenlee


Paige A. Greenlee is a commercial litigator with the law firm of Greenlee Law PLLC in Tampa, which she founded in October 2014 after spending many years working for large and medium-sized law firms. Greenlee has extensive experience representing clients in complex commercial litigation matters.

She currently serves on The Florida Bar Board of Governors as a representative from the 13th Judicial Circuit and is a member of the executive committee. She also sits on the executive council for the Solo and Small Firm Section of The Florida Bar. Greenlee has held leadership positions in several local voluntary bar associations, including the Hillsborough County Bar Association, for which she is a past president, and the Hillsborough Association for Women Lawyers.

Greenlee earned her J.D. from Emory University School of Law.

Kyleen A. Hinkle



Kyleen A. Hinkle, a member of Burns White Attorneys at Law, Tampa office, is a civil litigator practicing in the areas of general liability, long-term health care defense, hospital liability, and medical malpractice defense.

An advocate for women, Hinkle has been named a Leader in the Law by the Florida Association for Women Lawyers (FAWL). She is a past president of both the Pinellas Chapter of Florida Association for Women Lawyers (FAWL) and the statewide FAWL. She remains involved in both the local and state bar organizations. Hinkle also serves on the board for the National Conference of Women Bar Associations, the Florida Bar’s standing committee on Diversity and Inclusion, the Florida Bar’s Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee, and the Florida Bar’s Annual Convention Committee.

Hinkle earned her Juris Doctor from Stetson College of Law in 2008 and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2003. While in law school, she was awarded the Leadership Certificate, served as the president of the International Law Society, and was selected to serve as a research assistant under Charles H. Rose Ill.

In her free time, Hinkle enjoys traveling, outdoor activities, and spending time with her family.

Jeff Hittleman

Jeff Hittleman


Jeff Hittleman is an attorney with the Senior Citizen Law Project at Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida Inc. He handles housing, consumer, and domestic violence cases for seniors. Hittleman is also the lead attorney on the Jim Moran Foundation Grant, which has helped prevent over 500 seniors from becoming homeless in the last five years.

Dr. Keita Joy

Dr. Joy

Dr. Keita Joy is the CEO of Success Uncensored Coaching. Success is something that we all crave and deeply desire. But can we be honest? It’s also something we have difficulty defining and obtaining. As a society we are cluttered with the expectations of others, pressure to perform, and the great balancing act of trying to keep it all together. The truth is, we want to be fulfilled. We want to live a life of impact. How do we live a life of meaning while managing our mental health? How do we define success on our own terms and create a life we love? Dr. Joy has developed a research-based philosophy for success that will give you exponential joy, peace, clarity, creativity, and passion.

John F. Kynes

John F. Kynes


John F. Kynes has served as executive director of the Hillsborough County Bar Association since 2011. His background includes more than 19 years of public affairs and administrative experience at the federal, state, and local levels. From 2000 to 2006, Kynes served as district director for former U.S. Rep. Jim Davis in Tampa. Previously, Kynes served as director of intergovernmental relations for the City of Tampa, and, also, as an assistant to Florida Lt. Gov. Buddy MacKay in Tallahassee. From 1983 to 1987, Kynes worked as a legislative aide to U.S. Sen. Lawton Chiles in Washington, D.C. Kynes holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and a master’s degree in journalism and public affairs from American University in Washington, D.C. Active in the community, Kynes serves on the development council of Bay Area Legal Services, and he has served on the boards of the Salvation Army, Tampa Bay Little League, Exchange Club of Tampa, and the Moffitt Cancer Center Foundation.

Maria P. McCorkle



Maria P. McCorkle is the immediate past president of the Volusia-Flagler Association for Women Lawyers, which is an unstaffed bar. She is also an immediate past director for the Volusia County Bar YLD and the Seventh Circuit governor for the Florida Bar YLD Board of Governors. McCorkle is a career staff attorney at the Fifth District Court of Appeal. She is a Knight, a Rattler, and a Gator. Outside of the law, McCorkle is a cancer survivor, a professional half marathon pacer, and most importantly, mom to Connor and Ana who went through law school with her.

Roland Sanchez-Medina Jr.

Roland Sanchez-Medina

Sanchez-Medina Jr.

Roland Sanchez-Medina Jr. is a partner at SMGQ Law who focuses his practice in the areas of corporate and securities law, including mergers and acquisitions, corporate structuring/restructuring, board governance, domestic and international commercial transactions, commercial and residential real estate transactions, tax and estate planning, and other general transactional services. He is “AV” rated by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest rating possible indicating preeminent legal ability and professional ethics in Sanchez-Medina’s areas of practice. He is listed among the Legal Elite by Florida Trend Magazine.

Prior to forming the firm, Sanchez-Medina was a partner at the national law firm of McDermott, Will & Emery, where he was a member of the Corporate Department, and was a senior associate at the national law firm of Holland & Knight.

Sanchez-Medina currently serves as on The Florida Bar Board of Governors. He is a past chairman of the Business, Corporations and Financial Services Committee of the Business Law Section of The Florida Bar and past president of the Cuban American Bar Association. Sanchez-Medina is The Florida Bar 2023-2024 president-elect.

G.C. Murray II

G.C. Murray II

Murray II

G.C. Murray II is CEO and managing attorney for Association GC, which focuses on nonprofit and association management.  In addition, he is special counsel to a multimillion-dollar trade association and has helped direct more than $75 million in political giving. Murray is nationally recognized for his legal acumen and philanthropy. He founded the Innovative Community Engagement (ICE) Foundation – a nonprofit structured around mentorship, service, and professional development – that brings real-life benefits to underserved segments of society. Under his leadership, the ICE Foundation grew from one chapter in Tallahassee to a national nonprofit.

Murray’s numerous community leadership roles include serving as governor for The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division, member of Leadership Tallahassee Class 32 and Leadership Florida Connect Class VII. Murray was the youngest chair of The Florida Bar Code and Rules of Evidence Committee, the youngest fellow of the Wm. Reece Smith Jr. Leadership Academy, and one of the youngest to receive the Designated Professional Lobbyist (DPL) designation. In 2020, he was named the Graham Center’s Young Floridian of the Year.

Murray graduated from Florida International University’s Honors College as a presidential scholar. He earned his law degree from Florida State University, where he was both a Mason Ladd and Calvin Patterson scholar.

Anisha Patel

Anisha Patel


Anisha Patel is a commercial litigation attorney at Hill Ward Henderson in Tampa, where she represents clients in a variety of business-related disputes, including professional liability matters, partnership disputes, and insurance coverage disputes. She is experienced in disputes alleging fraud, breach of various types of contracts, tortious interference, breach of fiduciary duty, and shareholder and partner disputes, among others.

Patel has been involved in many local, state and national bar associations throughout her career. She is the president of The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division, where she has served in an elected capacity for the last seven years; a member of The Florida Bar Board of Governors; and an ex-officio board member for the Hillsborough County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division.

Patel completed her legal education at the London School of Economics and City Law School in London, England, where she was called to the Bar of England and Wales, and then attended law school for a second time at Stetson University College of Law, where she graduated first in her class.

Ana “Ani” Rodriguez-Newbern

Ana “Ani” Rodriguez-Newbern has been an attorney at Tangel-Rodriguez and Associates since 2013.

Ani Rodriguez-Newbern


Rodriguez-Newbern served as the president of the Hispanic Bar Association in 2018, where she also served as 2019 ex-officio and as a member of the board of directors, serving a term as chair in 2019. She was appointed to serve on the board of the Orange County Bar Association Foundation in 2015, where she has served terms as vice president, president, and immediate past president. Rodriguez-Newbern currently serves on the board of directors for the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association, a position she has held since being elected in 2019. She supports other volunteer mentors at over 170 universities across the country, a role for which she was selected in 2021. She has previously worked as a volunteer mentor to young women leaders at the University of Central Florida and Rollins College. She is a proud fellow of The Florida Bar Leadership Academy Class VII. Most recently she has been appointed vice chairman of Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee for 2023-2024.

Rodriquez-Newbern earned a bachelor’s degree in Communication from Florida State University. She earned her law degree at Barry University School of Law, where she served in various law student leadership roles.

Braulio Rosa

Braulio Rosa


Braulio Rosa has been with the Broward County Bar Association — which is fast approaching 4,000 members and has a budget of more than $1 million — since 2011 and serves as its executive director. Rosa previously spent 18 years overseeing various programs for local government and educational organizations. In this role, he supervised marketing and advertising initiatives, community relations strategies, special event management, strategic planning, and many administrative programs.

Rosa was recently appointed to the Florida Bar Board of Governors as a liaison and is vice-chairman of the Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee. He is a member of the 17th Judicial Circuit Grievance Committee “I”, executive committee of the 17th Judicial Pro Bono Committee, Broward College Paralegal Advisory Committee, and Voices for Children Advisory Council. Rosa was a 2021 recipient of the Marshall R. Cassedy Sr. Award, which recognizes those who have provided extraordinary service to The Florida Bar.

He received his undergraduate degree from Florida Atlantic University and went on to earn two master’s degrees there: one in education and the other in public administration.

Brandon Sapp



Brandon Sapp is currently a senior associate at Burns Sheppard Favors: Purely Legal in Fort Lauderdale where he handles various personal injury cases from auto accidents to slip and falls. Previously, he was an attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Wesley, public defender of the Ninth Judicial Circuit; worked for a large defense firm for several years where he handled bodily injury and uninsured/underinsured motorist claims; and has worked for one of the largest personal injury firms in the United States in which he gained valuable experience and handled plaintiff’s premises liability and personal injury claims.

Sapp is active in the legal community on a local and state level. He has most recently served as president of the Paul C. Perkins Bar Association and president of the Young Lawyers Section of the Orange County Bar Association. Additionally, he has served as a board member of the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association and as an Ambassador with the National Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Region XI, . He is a Class VI Fellow of The Florida Bar Wm. Reece Smith Jr. Leadership Academy.

Sapp is currently the Ninth Circuit governor for The Florida Bar YLD Board of Governors,, and a member of the Orange County Bar Association and the University of Florida Law Alumni Council, and is appointed to the Ninth Judicial Circuit Professionalism Panel.

He has received numerous awards and accolades including the Paul C. Perkins Bar Association Outstanding Member Award in 2016, Paul C. Perkins Bar Association Outstanding Service Award in 2019, the Young Lawyers Section of the Orange County Bar Association Award of Excellence in 2019, the Orange County Bar Association Presidential Leadership Award in 2021, and the FAMU Black Law Students Association Continued Commitment to Service Award in 2019. Lastly, he was chosen as a Florida Super Lawyers “Rising Star” from 2018 to 2022, Florida Trend Legal Elite “Up and Comer” in 2019-2021, Best Lawyers “Ones to Watch” in 2021 and 2022, Orlando Family Magazine Awesome Attorney for Civil Litigation in 2021, and National Bar Association Young Lawyers Division “Young Lawyer of the Week” in 2021.

Sapp received both his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Florida.

Sheri Fiske Schultz



Sheri Fiske Schultz is managing partner of Fiske & Co., a highly recommended South Florida women-owned litigation-support accounting firm. She brings over 35 years of experience to her clients, offering both professional expertise and practical insight into business valuations and litigation support services. In addition to being a licensed CPA, Fisk-Schultz holds the Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) and Certified in Financial Forensics (CFF) professional designations. She is qualified as an expert witness in circuit and federal Courts. A frequent speaker on topics such as business valuation and forensic accounting, she also has broad-based tax experience in mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, estate issues and tax compliance.

Schultz certifications and professional background enable her to provide expert advice and counsel to both outside CPAs and lawyers representing clients in business litigation and family law where business valuation, lost profits and forensic accounting are involved. During her time as chair of the Business Valuation/Litigation Committee for the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants (FICPA), Schultz helped develop the Valuation and Litigation Section for the State of Florida, and has chaired its annual conference for several years; additionally, she served as a member of the FICPA Board of Governors for six years.

Additionally, she served as a member of the North America Board of Directors of CPA Associates International Inc. (2015-2017 and was chair of its Forensic, Valuations & Litigation Services Committee (2012-2017).

Schultz recently received the Prestigious Women’s Award in the category of Financial Accounting, First Annual Finance Award, and the Apogee Award by South Florida Business & Wealth. The South Florida Business Journal honored her as an “Influential Business Woman”. She spends a great deal of time assisting charitable organizations in South Florida and Israel.

Victoria Sexton

Victoria Sexton


Victoria Sexton was awarded a 2019 Equal Justice Work’s Fellowship from the Florida Bar Foundation that was hosted at Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida Inc. Her fellowship focused on providing free civil legal representation to and advocacy for survivors of human trafficking in Broward County. In 2021, CCLA was awarded an OVC grant to continue working with survivors of human trafficking. Sexton is the attorney working under this grant.

Craig Shoup

Craig Shoup was named executive director of the Jacksonville Bar Association in February 2019. In this role he oversees the day-to-day operations of the 2000-member organization. Prior to being named executive director he was the chief of staff for the Jacksonville Bar Association from December 2017 to February 2019. In this position he collaborated closely with the executive director to manage day to day operations and special projects. Prior to joining the Jacksonville Bar Association, he served in the administration of the Fourth Judicial Circuit Public Defender’s office for nine years and was a special assistant to the Duval County Clerk of the Circuit and County Court for two years. He is a member of the National Association of Bar Executives and the Florida Bar Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee where he is a regular speaker at the annual conference. His community involvement includes the vice president of the DePaul School of Northeast Florida board of directors, vice chair of the City of Jacksonville Southeast Citizen Planning Advisory Committee, the Jacksonville Housing Authority, and the Zoe Gaudet Endowed Scholarship Fund at the Community Foundation of Jacksonville.

Shoup holds a bachelor’s degree from Flagler College.

Stephen Strum



Stephen Strum is a financial advisor with the Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. His mission is to develop enduring relationships with clients by providing expert guidance for a lifetime of financial security. Strum works with clients to identify their definitions of financial security and then focuses on solutions that can help make those financial goals a reality. He helps find the right solutions for personal, family or business needs. Strum’s passion and his commitment to his clients is unwavering.

Alice Sum

Alice Sum


Alice Sum is a trial attorney with the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission in its Miami Regional office.  Prior to joining the SEC, Sum was in private practice for 20 years, handling complex business litigation.  Sum is a member of The Florida Bar Board of Governors representing the 11th Circuit and serves on the 17th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission, nominated by the Bar and appointed by the Governor.  Sum is also a member of the board of directors for the Dade County Bar Association.  She is a Fellow of the Wm. Reece Smith, Jr., Leadership Academy — Class II; and founding member and past president of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of South Florida. Sum is active in the Miami-Dade Chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers, serving as co-chair of the Leadership, State and Federal Court Judicial Liaison, and Corporate Counsel Liaison committees. She chairs the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association Southeastern Regional Conference and is co-chair of the Spellman-Hoeveler Chapter of the American Inn of Court Bench and Bar Conference.

Sum received her J.D. from the University of Florida Levin College of Law and her B.A., with honors, from the University of Florida.

Judge Suzanne H. Van Wyk


Judge Van Wyk

Suzanne H. Van Wyk became an Administrative Law Judge for the Florida Division of Administrative Hearings in August 2012. She presides in agency rule challenges, bid disputes, and a wide variety of cases from Florida’s state agencies and school districts. Judge Van Wyk was formerly a shareholder with Bryant Miller Olive in the firm’s Tallahassee office, where she focused her practice on land use law, primarily for public clients. Prior to entering private practice, Judge Van Wyk was an assistant county attorney in Leon County, legal counsel to the Florida Building Commission, staff attorney for the Senate Committee on Community Affairs, and assistant general counsel for the former Department of Community Affairs.

Judge Van Wyk is a Board-Certified Specialist in City, County and Local Government Law. She is an enthusiastic advocate for access to justice and is currently the president of the Florida Bar Foundation, where she has served as a director since 2014. She is a past president and emeritus member of the Florida State College of Law Alumni Association, and recently established the Van Wyk Scholarship in administrative law at FSU College of Law.

Judge Van Wyk served on the Florida Bar Administrative Law Section Executive Council from 2013 to 2022 and held leadership positions from 2020 to 2022. She also formerly served on the Florida Bar Professionalism, Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee (past chair), and City, County, and Local Government Law Certification committees. She is an active member of Tallahassee Women Lawyers, the Florida Governmental Lawyers Association, and the Tallahassee Bar Association. Judge Van Wyk volunteers in the community through Good News Outreach, a faith-based charity providing senior grocery deliveries, a food pantry, affordable rental housing, and other services to underprivileged members of the Tallahassee community.

Scott Westheimer

Scott Westheimer


Scott Westheimer is the 2023-2024 President of The Florida Bar. He joined Syprett Meshad as an associate in 1996 and became a partner in 2000.

Westheimer has an “AV” rating by Martindale Hubbell, which means that he has been deemed to have very high professional ethics and preeminent legal ability. In 2021, he was selected to the Florida Super Lawyers list; in 2010 and 2011, he was selected to the Super Lawyers “Rising Stars” list. For 2012 through 2014, 2017, and 2020, he was recognized among Florida’s “Legal Elite” by Florida Trend magazine.

In 2019, Westheimer was re-elected to a fourth two-year term on the Florida Bar Board of Governors, 12th Circuit Representative, seat one, representing over 1,800 attorneys in Sarasota, DeSoto and Manatee counties.  Westheimer has served as the chairman of the Disciplinary Review Committee (2020-2021), serves on the executive committee (for the fifth straight year), served as chairman of the Communications Committee (2017-2018 and 2018-2019), served as chairman of the Program Evaluation Committee (2019-2020), and has served on the Special Committee on Technologies Affecting the Practice of Law and Strategic Planning Committee. Westheimer has been honored twice with the President’s Award of Merit, by Past President William J. Schifino at the June 2017 Annual Convention and by Past President Michelle Suskauer at the June 2019 Annual Convention.

Westheimer’s practice involves primarily the representation of plaintiffs in personal injury matters and various aspects of commercial litigation.  He is admitted to practice in the Supreme Court of the U.S.; U. S. District Court, Middle District of Florida; U.S. District Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit; and Florida state Courts.

He is a past president of the Sarasota County Bar Association (2010-2011), a past president of the Sarasota County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, a member (co-founder and former chair) of the Sarasota County Bar Association Diversity Committee, and served on the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division Board of Governors from 2004 to 2013.

Westheimer received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History, with high honors, from the University of Florida in 1993, and in 1996, received his Juris Doctorate, with high honors, from the University of Florida Levin College of Law.

Grace Yang

Grace Yang


Grace Yang is a shareholder at GrayRobinson P.A., a full-service law firm with 14 offices in Florida and an office in Washington, D.C. Yang is based in GrayRobinson’s Tampa office and focuses her practice in the areas of alcohol beverage and food law, hospitality law, and land use law. She has helped clients with the purchase, sale and licensure of thousands of restaurants, resort and hotel properties, timeshare properties, grocery stores, convenience stores, pharmacies, liquor stores, golf clubs, country clubs, movie theaters, and food and beverage concessions operators.

Her bar service includes six years on the Hillsborough County Bar Association’s board of directors, one year as its president-elect, and one year as its president. She also served as secretary of the Hillsborough County Bar Foundation for the 2022-2023 bar year.

She has also served as a board member and vice president of membership for the Hillsborough Association for Women Lawyers and as a board member of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Tampa Bay. She is currently a member of The Florida Bar’s Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee.

Yang received her Juris Doctor from Cornell Law School in 1997 and her bachelor’s degree from Yale University in 1994.

Hotel Information

Exterior view of the W Fort-Lauderdale resort shows a modern hotel with lots of metal and glass with views of the Atlantic ocean and palm trees.Hip and chic, the W Fort Lauderdale has the WOW factor from the moment you arrive and throughout your stay. With its artsy vibe, this resort in the heart of Fort Lauderdale Beach sports two roof-top pools, a bliss spa and gym. Eateries on site range from Mexican and steak to sushi, plus three bars.

The room rate is $259, which does not include applicable state and local taxes, currently 13%, or the $20 resort fee. The negotiated rate will be available three days prior and three days after the event dates indicated in the room block, subject to availability of guest rooms at the time of reservation.

The Daily Resort Amenity Package currently includes (subject to change):

  • Two beach chairs and one umbrella
  • Two complimentary bottles of water for the beach, located at the Concierge
  • Daily fitness class (beach boot camp, yoga)
  • Two,  two-hour bicycle rentals
  • In-room high speed Wi-Fi

A special thank you to The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division for its generous scholarship support for these individuals to attend the VBLC:

2023 Scholarship Recipients

  • Yineth Aslan, Broward County Hispanic Bar Association
  • Heather Beale, South Palm Beach County Bar Association Young Lawyer Section and South Palm Beach County Florida Association of Women Lawyers
  • Brittany Ford, Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association
  • Melissa Jordon, Miami Dade County Bar Association
  • Carleen Leffler-Nicastro, Volusia County Bar Association YLD
  • Rachel Licona, St. Petersburg Bar Association, Clearwater Bar Association
  • Veronique Malebranche, Haitian Lawyers Association
  • Melissa Mazzitelli, Asian Pacific American Bar Association of South Florida
  • Alexandra Mena, Orange County Bar Association, Young Lawyers Section
  • Michelle Rodriguez, Broward County Hispanic Bar Association
  • Jacob Schumer, Orange County Bar Association Young Lawyers Section
  • Natasha Selvaraj, Sarasota County Bar Association YLD