Robert N. Clarke, Jr. | Shareholder
Robert N. Clarke, Jr.
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Contact

rclarke@ausley.com
123 South Calhoun Street
P.O. Box 391
Tallahassee, Florida 32302
Voice: (850) 425-5456
Fax: (850) 222-7560

Biography

Rob Clarke is board certified by The Florida Bar in Business Litigation. Board certification is The Florida Bar’s highest level of evaluation and denotes “Legal Expert” status. Rob Clarke practices in the area of civil litigation and serves as trial counsel in a broad range of cases including complex commercial business disputes, significant personal injury and wrongful death claims, class actions, and other litigation and regulatory matters. Rob is known for his legal analysis, strategic thinking, and focus on results. His clients include national corporations, state and local governments, construction companies, estates, partnerships, and individuals with comprehensive litigation requirements.

In addition to his litigation practice, Rob is an Adjunct Professor of Law at The Florida State University College of Law where he teaches Florida Civil Procedure and Trial Practice. Rob’s experience with and knowledge of Florida courts is also enhanced by his service on The Florida Bar Civil Procedure Rules Committee, where he previously served as Chair. Rob has achieved AV® Peer Review Rating and AV Preeminent status in “Business Litigation” by Martindale-Hubbell. Additionally, he has been consistently selected by his peers as a member of Florida Trends’ “Legal Elite,” Florida “Super Lawyers,” and “The Best Lawyers in America.”

Admitted to Practice

  • State of Florida
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida
  • United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida

Career Experience

  • The Florida State University College of Law, Adjunct Professor, Florida Civil Practice (1999 – present)
  • The Florida State University College of Law, Adjunct Professor, Trial Practice (2013 – present)

Professional & Community Involvement

  • Judicial Nominating Commission, Second Judicial Circuit (2012–Present)
  • The Florida Bar Grievance Committee, Second Judicial Circuit (2007–2011) (Chair, 2011)
  • The Florida Bar Foundation, Board of Directors (2006–2009)
  • Board of Governors, Young Lawyers Division, The Florida Bar (1990–1992)
  • Civil Procedure Rules Committee, The Florida Bar, (2004-2008) (Chair, 2005)
  • Board of Directors, Florida State University College of Law Alumni Association, (2000–2006) (President, 2006)
  • Leadership Florida Class XIII (1995), Board of Directors (1996–1997)
  • The Florida Justice Association (previously The Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers)
  • The Association of Trial Lawyers of America
  • Killearn United Methodist Church, Board of Trustees (Chair)
  • Best Lawyers in America, in the practice areas of “Bet-the-Company” Litigation; Commercial Litigation; and, Litigation – Construction, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014
  • Florida Trend, Legal Elite, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014
  • Florida Super Lawyer (Business Litigation), 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012

Education

  • J.D., with honors, Florida State University, 1986
  • B.S., cum laude, Florida State University, 1979
  • Florida State Gold Key
  • Florida State University Journal of Land Use and Environmental Law, 1984-1986

Military Service

  • United States Army, 1979-1983
  • Lieutenant Colonel, United States Army Reserves, 1983-2004

Extended Profile

Rob Clarke is board certified by The Florida Bar in Business Litigation. Board certification is The Florida Bar’s highest level of evaluation and denotes “Legal Expert” status. Rob Clarke has been repeatedly recognized for his superior representation of clients in the area of civil litigation. Rob serves as lead trial counsel in a broad array of cases including complex business disputes, significant wrongful death and personal injury claims, class actions, and other litigation and regulatory matters. As an AV Rated attorney by Martindale-Hubbell, including an AV Preeminent Status in “Business Litigation,” Rob is recognized for his keen legal analysis, strategic thinking and singular focus on results. Rob’s litigation clients include national corporations, state and local governments, construction companies, estates, partnerships, and individuals with complex and comprehensive litigation requirements. Rob has successfully litigated cases resulting in multi-million dollar jury verdicts and settlements for his clients in many types of civil cases. Additionally he has successfully defended clients facing significant exposure in state and federal courts. In this regard, he has been recognized by Best Lawyers in the area of “Bet-the-Company” Litigation.

In addition to his litigation practice, Rob has been an Adjunct Professor of Law at The Florida State University College of Law for over 10 years. Rob teaches Florida Civil Procedure and Trial Practice. Rob’s experience with and knowledge of Florida courts is also enhanced by his service on The Florida Bar Civil Procedure Rules Committee. He has been a member of the Civil Procedure Rules Committee since 2004 and served as Chair in 2005. Rob is recognized by his peers as a leader in the field of civil procedure and has argued before the Florida Supreme Court relating to matters involving court rules. He is a frequent lecturer on court procedure including teaching Bar Examination preparation classes and topics on e-discovery. For the past several years, Rob has been selected by his peers as a member of Florida Trends’ “Legal Elite,” Florida “Super Lawyers,” and “The Best Lawyers in America.”

Rob was admitted to The Florida Bar in 1986 and joined Ausley McMullen at that time. Rob is admitted to practice in all Florida State Courts and in the U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Middle Districts of Florida. He is also admitted to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and the Federal Circuit.
Prior to entering the practice of law, Rob served on active duty for four years as an officer in the United States Army and continued to serve in the Unites States Army Reserves during his practice, retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in 2004. While in the Reserves, Rob served for ten years as a Reserve Forces Officer and Commander assigned to the Selective Service System for the Northern District of Florida.

Education:

  • J.D., with honors, Florida State University, 1986
  • B.S. in Business Management, cum laude, Florida State University, 1979
  • Florida State Gold Key
  • Florida State University College of Law Journal of Land Use and Environmental Law, 1984-1986

Court Admissions:

  • State of Florida
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida
  • United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

Professional Activities:

  • The Florida State University College of Law, Adjunct Professor, Florida Civil Procedure (1999 – present)
  • The Florida State University College of Law, Adjunct Professor, Trial Practice (2013 – present)
  • Lecturer and Instructor for Kaplan Bar Preparation Course, Florida Civil Procedure
  • Judicial Nominating Commission for the Second Judicial Circuit, (Nominated by The Florida Bar and appointed by Governor Rick Scot) (2012–Present)
  • The Florida Bar Grievance Committee for the Second Judicial Circuit (2008–2011) (Chair, 2011)
  • The Florida Bar Civil Procedures Rules Committee (2004–2008) (Chair, 2005)
  • The Florida Bar Foundation, Board of Directors (2006–2009)

Memberships, Recognitions, and Community Activities:

  • Florida Bar Board Certified in Business Litigation
  • AV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • AV Preeminent Status in “Business Litigation” by Martindale-Hubbell, 2012
  • Best Lawyers in America, in the practice areas of Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigation; and, Litigation – Construction: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
  • Florida Trend, Legal Elite, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
  • Florida Super Lawyer (Business Litigation), 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012
  • Florida State University College of Law Alumni Association, Board of Directors (2000–2006); President (2006)
  • Florida State University College of Law Alumni Association, Distinguished Alumni Award (2004) 
  • Leadership Florida, Graduate (Class XIII 1995), Board of Directors (1996–1997)
  • Board of Governors, Young Lawyers Division, The Florida Bar 1990–1992
  • Tallahassee Bar Association (1986–present) 
  • The Florida Justice Association (previously The Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers)
  • The Association of Trial Lawyers of America 
  • Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity Board of Trustees (2009–present) (Chair, 2010)
  • Killearn United Methodist Church, Board of Trustees (Chair)

Recent Presentations:

State of Florida General Counsel’s Association Presentation on E-Discovery, E-Filing and E-Mail Service (2012)

Military Experience:

  • United States Army Officer (active duty), 1979–1983 
  • Lieutenant Colonel, United States Army Reserves (Retired), 1983–2004 
  • Served for ten years as a Reserve Forces Officer and Commander assigned to the Selective Service System for the Northern District of Florida


Representative Complex Litigation Experience:

  • Served as co-counsel in a jury trial in West Palm Beach representing the plaintiff in a complex business dispute resulting in compensatory and punitive damages in excess of $13-million. 
  • Served as lead counsel for plaintiff in a jury trial in Melbourne, Florida in breach of contract action resulting in jury verdict in excess of $3.5-million. 
  • Successfully defended the estate of a Major League baseball player who crashed his airplane in New York City. 
  • Represented the estate of a race track worker in a wrongful death action against Daytona International Speedway.
  • Represented estates and victims of automobile accidents resulting in significant verdicts and settlements.
  • Served as lead counsel for plaintiff against a tire manufacturer relating to the sale of tires at United State military exchanges throughout the world. 
  • Represented shopping centers, grocery store chains and other businesses in the protection of their constitutional rights to exclude protesters and signature collectors from business premises. 
  • Served as lead counsel and successfully defending Florida Department of Transportation in a complex road construction case with claimed damages in excess of $30-million. 
  •  Represents several state agencies and local government in complex contract litigation cases.
  • Successfully challenged and defended awards of state contracts with state and local governments. 
  •  Successfully challenged and defended State statutes on both state and federal constitutional grounds at both trial and appellate levels. 
  • Served as lead trial counsel in a case involving professional negligence against engineering firm and architect of AHCA regulated surgery facility. 
  • Represents national utility companies throughout the State of Florida with regard to construction claims and utility relocation issues. 
  • Served as lead counsel for 18 telecommunications companies sued in class action for alleged violations of Federal Communication Act of 1996 and tariffs. 
  • Successfully represented national companies in environmental land use actions involving permitting, zoning and enforcement actions. 
  • Served as lead counsel in construction arbitration proceeding in Destin, Florida involving breach of contract relating to luxury beach properties. 
  • Served as lead counsel in litigation between a limestone mine owner and the mine operator involving royalties due and mining practices.
  • Served as lead counsel for municipality in Bay County, Florida in defense of efforts to force election to dissolve the city.
  • Successfully represented plaintiffs and defendants in intellectual property litigation.
  • Successfully defended actions for patent infringement and damages in state and federal courts.

 


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