City Attorney’s Office Among Elite Experts In The Field
By Space Coast Daily // August 8, 2013
Lannon & Sweeney become board certified
BREVARD COUNTY • PALM BAY, FLORIDA – City Attorney Andrew Lannon and Deputy City Attorney Pete Sweeney recently became board certified by the Florida Bar in the specialized areas of city, county and local government and also construction law.
This ranks them among the top two percent of practicing attorneys in the State of Florida, and they are considered among the top experts in their specialized fields.
Sweeney received board certification in construction law, and Lannon received board certification in city, county and local government law.
Both passed a rigorous six-hour exam after more than eight weeks of study and preparation for the highly coveted credentials. Only six percent of eligible Florida Bar members, approximately 4,600 lawyers, are board certified.
In order to qualify, attorney’s must have a minimum of five years practicing law; demonstrate substantial involvement in the field of law for which certification is sought; pass a peer review of competence in the specialty field as well as character, ethics and professionalism in the practice of law; satisfy the certification area’s continuing legal education requirements; and pass the exam.
The certification is valid for five years, during which time the attorney must continue to practice law and attend Florida Bar-approved continuing legal education courses.
“The City of Palm Bay is very fortunate to have such highly-credentialed and experienced legal staff” said City Manager, Sue Hann.
“I appreciate the very capable team in the City Attorney’s Office and the city is extremely proud to now have two board-certified attorneys representing Palm Bay.”
FLORIDA TREND’S FLORIDA LEGAL ELITE
Andrew Lannon was appointed city attorney in 2011. In 2012 and 2013, he was selected as Florida Trend’s Florida Legal Elite, recognized in 2013 as one of the top 1,228 attorneys out of the 96,512 attorneys licensed to practice law in the State of Florida and as one of the top 61 attorneys in the state employed by municipal, county, state or regional government agencies and non-profit organizations.
Mr. Lannon is AV-rated by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards given by this renowned attorney rating service. Peter Sweeney, Jr. joined the City Attorney’s Office in October 2012.
He earned his law degree with honors in 2004 from Florida State University College of Law. Sweeney is now one of only 318 attorneys out of the 96,512 attorneys licensed to practice law in Florida to achieve board certification in construction law. He is admitted to practice law in all courts in the State of Florida as well as the United States District Courts for both the Middle, and Southern Districts of Florida.
Patricia Denise Smith joined the City Attorney’s Office in August 2011 as a deputy city attorney. Smith’s focus with the city has been litigation and police liability matters.
She started her career in the Public Defender’s Office for the 19th Judicial Circuit defending over 45 jury and non-jury cases. Smith subsequently accepted the assistant general counsel position with the Florida Department of Health prosecuting healthcare licensure cases.
Smith is admitted to practice in the United States District Courts in the Northern, Middle and Southern Districts of Florida and in the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
The City Attorney’s Office is currently handling 276 active litigation cases involving everything from foreclosures, construction projects and contracts to labor relations and other civil matters that potentially put the taxpayers at risk.
The City Attorney’s Office protects the interests of the city and its taxpayers through its knowledge and expertise in these matters often preventing the payout of hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages resulting from litigation each year.