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Florida Bar Board Certified in Business Litigation and most often lead trial counsel or Florida counsel, Rob Clarke represents national and regional companies, state and local governments, partnerships, and individuals in a broad array of cases including significant “bet-the-company” exposure, complex business disputes, class actions, and other litigation and regulatory matters.

Rob Clarke is a shareholder and member of the Management Committee of Ausley McMullen. A board certified attorney in Business Litigation by The Florida Bar, Rob 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. His 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, and is recognized for his keen legal analysis, strategic thinking and singular focus on results.

Rob’s experience with and knowledge of Florida courts is also enhanced by his service on The Florida Bar Civil Procedure Rules Committee. He was a member of the Civil Procedure Rules Committee for many years 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. Additionally, he is a frequent lecturer on court procedure including teaching Bar Examination preparation classes and topics on e-discovery. 

In addition to his litigation practice, Rob has been an Adjunct Professor of Law at The Florida State University College of Law for over 15 years, where he teaches Florida Civil Procedure, Trial Practice, and Electronic Discovery and Digital Evidence.

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 United 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.

  • 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.

Education

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

Bar Admissions

  • State of Florida
  • State of Tennessee
  • 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
  • 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 – 2016)
  • The Florida State University College of Law, Adjunct Professor, E-Discovery and Digital Evidence (2016-2017)
  • 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 Scott) (2012–Present) (Chair 2014-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)
  • 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)
  • The Tallahassee Chamber Executive Committee (2016-Present) (Governance Chair, 2019-Present)
  • The Tallahassee Chamber Board of Directors (2016-Present)
  • State Capital Group Board of Directors (2015-Present)
  • United Methodist Committee on Relief: Certified Emergency Response Team (Volunteer)
  • Committee of 99 of Tallahassee/Leon County (Law Enforcement Support Organization) (2020 – Present)
  • 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-Present
  • Florida Trend, Legal Elite, 2005-2012, 2014-2015 Hall of Fame 2016-Present
  • Florida Super Lawyer (Business Litigation), 2007-Present
  • State of Florida General Counsel’s Association Presentation on E-Discovery, E-Filing and E-Mail Service
  • Northern District of Florida Litigation Checklists, Practical Law, 2015