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C. Steven Yerrid


Founding Partner, The Yerrid Law Firm, Adjunct Professor of Law

B.A., Louisiana State; J.D., Georgetown

B.A., Louisiana State University; J.D., Georgetown.  Professor Yerrid, a graduate...

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B.A., Louisiana State University; J.D., Georgetown.  Professor Yerrid, a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center, has been repeatedly recognized as one of America’s top trial lawyers possessed with an unwavering commitment to justice.

 

In 1980, he received international attention in one of the world’s largest maritime tragedies through his successful “Act of God” defense of harbor pilot John Lerro when a freighter struck the Sunshine Skyway Bridge destroying its center span and killing 35 people. 

 

Professor Yerrid has experienced a career of other noteworthy successes, including more than 190 verdicts and settlements of $1 million or more.  Among those was a jury verdict of $217 million which was the largest medical malpractice award in Florida’s history, and the nation’s largest verdict of 2006.  In 2009, he again obtained the largest verdict in the country in a wrongful death case that resulted in a jury’s award of $330 million.

 

Appointed by the late Governor Lawton Chiles, Professor Yerrid accepted a leading role in Florida’s lawsuit against the cigarette industry, a case that resulted in the largest monetary settlement in U.S. history, topping $17 billion.  In addition, he and the members of Florida’s “Dream Team” succeeded in obtaining landmark advertising concessions that permanently prevented marketing and pandering aimed at children, eliminated billboards near schools, vending machines, Joe Camel, as well as the Marlboro Man, and created youth tobacco prevention programs across the nation.

 

Professor Yerrid was appointed as Special Counsel to the Office of the Chief Judge (13th Judicial Circuit) and the Florida Conference of Circuit Judges.  He successfully argued before the Florida Supreme Court in protecting against public disclosure of confidential records and internal communications within the judiciary. 

 

He was also honored to be selected as Special Counsel to the President of The United Way in Washington, D.C. and participated pro bono in a $3 billion worldwide fundraising effort, as well as the launching of several nationally based programs.

 

In 2010, confronted by the largest environmental catastrophe in the nation’s history, Governor Charlie Crist appointed Professor Yerrid as Special Counsel to the Governor.  Again acting pro bono, he served the people of Florida regarding the Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster and its aftermath.

 

He is a lifetime member of the “invitation only” Inner Circle of Advocates – a prestigious organization whose membership consists of the top 100 trial lawyers in the country.  Professor Yerrid is a past recipient of the Perry Nichols Award, bestowed by the Florida Justice Association as its highest honor in recognition of his lifelong pursuit of justice; named Top Lawyer in the Nation by Lawyers USA; selected by the National Law Journal as one of the top ten litigators in Florida; honored by the American Board of Trial Advocates as Trial Lawyer of the Year (Tampa Bay Chapter); selected Hillsborough County Bar Association’s Outstanding Lawyer; and other numerous honors and recognitions.

 

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