The Florida Bar

News Releases


June 7, 2021
CONTACT: Jennifer Krell Davis, [email protected]
TELEPHONE: 850-509-9124

TALLAHASSEE, FLA – The Florida Bar will welcome new leadership when Jacksonville attorney Michael G. Tanner is sworn in as the Bar’s 73rd president and West Palm Beach attorney Gary S. Lesser becomes president-elect during the Bar’s hybrid 2021 Annual Convention on June 9-11.

Mike Tanner, who practices with Gunster in Jacksonville and Tallahassee, has more than 30 years of experience in complex litigation, state and federal appellate law, and election law. He is board-certified in both civil trial and business litigation by The Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization and Education.

Tanner is listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Bet-the-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, and Appellate Law. He is also named among The Best Lawyers in America as a 2019 “Lawyer of the Year” in Jacksonville for Appellate Practice. Tanner has been recognized in Florida Trend magazine’s “Legal Elite” (2006-2019) and The Hall of Fame (2014-2019), as well as in Super Lawyers magazine (2007-2019, including “Top 100” attorneys in Florida in 2012, 2013, 2018 and 2019). In March 2012, he was inducted as a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.

Tanner has been actively involved in Bar leadership and committees, including the COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery Task Force, Board of Governors, Strategic Planning Committee, and Executive Committee.

Professionalism in the legal community has been an ongoing priority for Tanner and will be a cornerstone of his tenure as president, with an intense focus on competence, ethics, and civility. In addition to his service with the Bar, Tanner also actively volunteers in his local Jacksonville community. Every month for the last 10 years, he has volunteered as one of the cooks at the Sulzbacher Center, and he is also deeply involved with Jacksonville’s Youth Crisis Center, previously chairing its board.

Tanner attended the University of Florida’s Fredric G. Levin School of Law, graduating in 1978. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Davidson College in 1975.

Gary S. Lesser, The Florida Bar’s 2022 president-elect, is the managing partner of Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith PLLC, in West Palm Beach. He practices insurance, medical malpractice, personal injury, and product liability law.

Lesser is actively involved with several Bar committees, including the Special Committee on Professionalism, Review Committee on Professional Ethics, Constitutional Judiciary Committee, Legislation Committee, and the Board of Governors. He is a member of the Health Law Section, where he also serves as board liaison, and the Trial Lawyers and Real Property, Probate and Trust Law sections. He has been a member of the Palm Beach County Bar Association since 1992 and has chaired its Professionalism and Medical Legal committees.

Lesser earned his law degree in 1992 from the University of Miami after receiving his undergraduate degree in International Affairs from The George Washington University in 1989.


About The Florida Bar

Founded in 1949, The Florida Bar serves the legal profession for the protection and benefit of both the public and all Florida lawyers. As one of the nation’s largest mandatory bars, The Florida Bar fosters and upholds a high standard of integrity and competence within Florida’s legal profession as an official arm of the Florida Supreme Court. To learn more, visit


EDITORS: Please note The Florida Bar is not an association and "Association" is not part of our name. Proper reference is "The Florida Bar." Local bar organizations are properly termed "associations."