The Trial Lawyer Section welcomed four new Executive Council members at their June meeting during The Florida Bar Annual Convention on June 28, 2019.
Dianne “Dee Dee” Fischer, Miami
John M. Howe, West Palm Beach
Andrew Reiss, Naples
Shirin Vesely, St. Petersburg
Dianne “Dee Dee” Fischer
Dee Dee Fischer is a trial lawyer focused on complex commercial disputes, class action defense, insurance litigation, and antitrust litigation. She provides smart, pragmatic legal advice on a wide range of issues including contract disputes, torts, and statutory actions pursuant to the Lanham Act, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the Sherman Act, and the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act.
Prior to practicing law, Dee Dee served, active duty, in the U.S. Army as an intelligence analyst and an Arabic linguist. She was awarded an ROTC scholarship to attend Georgetown University, where she earned her Bachelors of Science of Foreign Service degree in International Economics from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service. Afterward, Dee Dee served for a decade in the U.S. Army Reserves.
Dee Dee is active in her community and in bar-related activities. She serves on the COVID-19 Task Force for the Florida Bar Business Law Section, and speaks and writes on COVID-19-related procedural and legal issues. She is the chair of the Antitrust Subcommittee of the Florida Bar Business Law Section, and recently joined the Executive Council of the Florida Bar Trial Lawyers Section. She has a long-standing relationship with The Miami Bridge, a nonprofit organization providing housing and support for at-risk kids, and serves as general counsel to that organization. In addition, Dee Dee is a faculty member for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA), and is a planning committee member for the Akerman Trial Academy.
John M. Howe
John M. Howe is well-known and well-respected attorney as a leader in Palm Beach County’s legal and civic community. He is a Past President of the Palm Beach County Bar Association and the Palm Beach Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. When he was installed as the Palm Beach County Bar Association’s 89th president in 2011, he became the first African-American to serve in that capacity. He was recognized by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida as a Legal Trailblazer in the South Florida region. He was also named by Legacy Palm Beach Magazine and one South Florida’s 25 Most Influential Blacks in Business. Of Jamaican descent, he was also recognized by ICABA™ Salutes as one of South Florida’s 100 Most Accomplished Caribbean Americans.
John Howe is an experienced trial attorney with over 20 years of experience pursuing justice for individuals and families who have been devastated by serious or fatal injuries, due the negligence of others. He enforces the Constitution’s presumption of innocence and champions the cause of liberty for those who stand accused of committing crimes. He also defends the business interests of individuals and corporations involved in business disputes and provides counsel on how they might avoid litigation. John Howe also assists families seeking relief in various types of immigration matters.
As a former County Court Division Chief and Felony-Level Trial Attorney with the Public Defender’s Office for the 15th Judicial Circuit, John Howe represented thousands of clients charged with committing crimes ranging from minor drug and traffic crimes to homicide. Today, he represents individual individuals, families and organizations in civil and criminal matters, both in the state and federal courts. However, beyond his formidable legal skills, John Howe’s abilities as a listener and compassionate advocate is what his clients value most.
“The practice of law is about connecting with people. In order to effectively serve my clients, I listen closely to them first to understand the uniqueness of their cases and how their lives have been impacted. Listening is the first step in crafting an effective strategy to pursue the justice my clients deserve.” He continued, “Seeking justice for my clients, to me, is always a fight worth fighting.”
Andrew Reiss is Senior Counsel with Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC in Naples, Florida. He graduated from the University of Miami School of Law in 1997 and has been in Naples since that time, previously working with the firms of Treiser, Kobza & Volpe and Cheffy Passidomo.
Andrew is a trial attorney specializing in business litigation matters involving all manner of business and commercial disputes including contract disputes, corporate management disputes and claims between businesses. He also handles employment law litigation, real estate litigation and construction litigation related to business relationships. Andrew has been a Board Certified Specialist in business litigation, as designated by The Florida Bar, since 2008.
On behalf of business clients, Andrew has handled litigation matters involving ownership and management disputes between majority and minority owners of corporations and limited liability companies, separation and buyout issues, and dissolutions of corporate entities. Andrew has also represented businesses in a wide range of employment-related disputes including litigation over employment contract claims, claims for unpaid and overtime compensation under state and federal law, enforcement of restrictive covenants including non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, and claims of harassment and discrimination under state and federal employment discrimination statutes. Andrew has represented clients statewide in construction disputes involving contract claims by contractors, owners, developers and governmental entities, claims of defective construction by homeowners and condominium associations and enforcement of construction liens. In his trial practice, Andrew assists clients with litigation matters that arise in state and federal courts in Florida, including both non-jury and jury trials.
Andrew has served on the Board of Directors of the Collier County Bar Association since 2014 and currently serves as its President-elect as well as President of the Collier County Bar Foundation.
SHIRIN M. VESELY was raised in Arcadia, Florida. She attended Stetson University and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree. Mrs. Vesely graduated from Stetson University College of Law where she was a member of the Moot Court Team, a member of the ABA Trial Team with multiple national first place victories, and a recipient of Stetson’s Ralph Ferrell Trial Competition Award. Mrs. Vesely was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1994. In 1995, she married her law school classmate, Brandon S. Vesely. Mr. and Mrs. Vesely have two daughters, Mariah and Sophia. After practicing for 20 years with her mentor, Michael J. Keane, she has been a shareholder at Trenam, Kemker, Scharf, Barkin, Frye, O’Neill & Mullins, P.A. since September 2018 and practices in the areas of business litigation, personal injury, wrongful death, nursing malpractice, legal malpractice, and employment litigation. She also serves her legal community as a Florida Supreme Court Certified Civil Circuit Mediator. She is licensed to practice law in all Florida state courts, the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida, and the United States Court of Appeal, Eleventh Circuit. She is a past chair of the Trial Practice Section of the St. Petersburg Bar Association and has held leadership positions in the St. Petersburg Bar Foundation. She is a member of the Barney Masterson Inn of Court, the Pinellas County Trial Lawyers Association, and Clearwater Bar Association. Mrs. Vesely has remained active in serving students at Stetson University College of Law as a past member of the Board of Overseers, as a Trial Team Coach, and as an Adjunct Professor of Trial Practice. Mrs. Vesely is AV rated by Martindale Hubbell and has been recognized as Florida Trend’sLegal Elite and by Best Lawyers in America. She was a recipient of the “The Barney Award” in 2015 which is awarded to a trial lawyer who demonstrates the highest degree of professionalism, ethics, civility and legal excellence in the practice of law.