The Florida Bar
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The President of The Florida Bar


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On This Page

Introduction
Messages from the President
Videos
Schedule
Social Media Channels
President's Pages (Journal)
The President's Contact Information
Officers of The Florida Bar
Past Presidents of The Florida Bar





Introduction to the President

William J. Schifino, Jr., President of The Florida Bar, 2016-2017

Schifino is managing partner in the Tampa office of Burr & Forman LLP and is a Board Certified specialist in business litigation. He focuses on litigation and trial practice, including securities litigation and arbitration, professional malpractice litigation, employment litigation and intellectual property litigation. He also is on the firm’s Executive Committee.

Schifino earned his J.D. degree from the University of Florida College of Law and his B.A. from Tulane University. After law school, he worked for Taub & Williams, P.A., then helped establish Williams, Schifino, Mangione & Steady, P.A., where he was a founding shareholder, president and then managing director before the firm combined with Burr & Forman in 2012. Schifino recently completed an eight-year term as a member and chairman of the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission.

Schifino has been active in Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Greater Tampa and as a director of the corporate board of the Boys & Girls Club of Tampa Bay, Inc. He is on the Board of Trustees for the University of Florida Levin College of Law. He also spent many years as a youth league softball and baseball coach. He and his wife, Paola, have two daughters and a son.

Full Biography External Link


President's Bar Journal Profile

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Messages from the President
Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2016
Dear Florida Bar Member:

Pro bono service is part of the very DNA of our justice system, because accessing justice shouldn’t have a price tag or be limited only to those who can afford it. Florida is one of the few states in the country that requires its attorneys to report how many hours of service and dollars they donate each year – because numbers count. Last year, Florida attorneys collectively donated more than $5.3 million in legal aid and more than 1.7 million hours of free legal service.


And while these figures are impressive, they are sadly still not enough to address the growing needs of citizens across the state. According to the World Justice Project, more than 80 percent of low-income litigants either go it alone or simply give up when faced with a legal challenge.

If Florida attorneys donated 1.7 million hours last year, imagine what could be accomplished if this number grew even more? That is why I am calling on all of us to do more, with a goal of reaching 2 million collective hours of pro bono service this year.

With this in mind, The Florida Bar has joined forces with The Florida Bar Foundation, voluntary bars and legal aid agencies across the state for Pro Bono Week, to recognize those who so freely give their time, while encouraging others to participate.

Let’s make our numbers count by using Pro Bono Week as an opportunity to celebrate, educate and advocate for pro bono involvement in our communities. We are using #FLProBonoCounts on the Bar’s social media channels to share stories of impact and bring attention to this critical element of being a lawyer. Share your stories using #FLProBonoCounts so that we can together raise our voices – and our hands – to help others.

Additionally, on Jan. 19, 2017, in a ceremonial session of the Florida Supreme Court, the Court and The Florida Bar will host the annual Pro Bono Awards Ceremony to honor more than two dozen lawyers and judges for the free legal assistance they have provided. The Florida Bar and the Supreme Court invite nominations from legal aid groups, civic organizations, fellow lawyers and regular citizens who know of an attorney who has so freely given their time and expertise. Nomination forms can be found on the Bar’s website. The deadline to submit is Nov. 9, 2016.

For the most part, pro bono work isn’t glamorous. It doesn’t make you famous and it certainly won’t make you rich. But it feels good. It is rewarding. And it matters.


Sincerely,




William J. Schifino, Jr.
Florida Bar President
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Videos

October 2016 President's Message




June 2016 General Assembly Swearing-in Ceremony at Annual Convention

http://www.floridabar.org/tfb/TFBOrgan.nsf/043adb7797c8b9928525700a006b647f/91b30f1bec604ef585257fdc00721246!OpenDocument



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The President's Schedule

Current Schedule

Social Media Channels

Social Media Channels

President's Pages

President's Pages
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The President's Contact Information
William J. Schifino, Jr.
Burr & Forman, LLP
201 N. Franklin St., Ste. 3200
Tampa, FL 33602
Phone: (813) 221-2626
Fax: (813) 221-7335
wschifino@burr.com
president@flabar.org
Images

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Officers of The Florida Bar

President-elect 2016-17
Michael J. Higer
Berger Singerman LLP
1450 Brickell Ave., Ste. 1900
Miami, FL 33131
Phone: (305) 755-9500
Fax: (305) 714-4340
mhiger@bergersingerman.com
Images
Schedule
Biography External Link
Executive Director
John F. Harkness, Jr.
651 E. Jefferson Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-2300
Phone: (850) 561-5758
Fax: (850) 561-5826


Past Presidents of The Florida Bar

[Revised: 10-26-2016]