Where are They Now? Alumni Updates: Summer 2014

August 19, 2014

Filed Under: Alumni

Alumni share news and updates about personal and professional accomplishments.

Garry Adel, B.S. ’78, will retire from his law practice in late 2014. He has been practicing in Ocala for 31 years. Garry shared warm memories as a student and expressed his deep appreciation of the education he received at FSU Criminology.

Russell E. Bergstrom, B.S. ’75, J.D. ’78, attended Loyola University’s School of Law in New Orleans, LA, from 1975-1978. AFter several in-house corporate and civil law positions, he moved to Alabama and has been practicing criminal defense in Mobile, AL for the past 13 years.

Clarissa Cabreja, B.S. ’98, J.D. ’03, was recently appointed by the Department of Children and Families as the Southern Regional Director of the Children’s Legal Services (CLS) Division. She is responsible for child abuse cases in Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties while exercising other duties of the CLS Leadership Team.

Al Dennis, B.S. ’75, retired from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

Courtney E. Goddard, B.S. ’97, was promoted to the position of vice president and general counsel, effective July 18, as announced by Park President David Fowler. She is succeeding Roger W. Hershey, J.D., L.L.M., who has been appointed vice president for entrepreneurial ventures.

Goddard, who has been employed in the University’s Office of General Counsel the last seven years, previously served as associate vice president and general counsel. Prior to coming to Park, she represented more than 30 colleges and universities in private law practice.

A noted expert in the field of higher education law, Goddard has been a featured speaker at several national conferences for the National Association of College and University Attorneys. She is slated to be a featured presenter on risk analysis in higher education at the American Conference Institute’s Legal, Regulatory and Compliance Forum on Higher Education Law in Chicago in October.

Goddard is also a lauded leader in the Kansas City philanthropic community. She has served on multiple civic and charitable boards, including the Kansas City Repertory Theatre, the Harvest Ball Society and the St. Paul’s Episcopal Day School, and she served as co-chair of the Southwest Boulevard Family Health Care’s “Champagne and Chocolate” event. This past spring, Goddard was named a “Rising Star of Philanthropy” by Nonprofit Connect, and earlier this month, she was named to the 2014 NextGen Leaders class by the Kansas City Business Journal.

As vice president and general counsel, Goddard will head an office that advises the University’s Board of Trustees, president and executive staff regarding governance and legal issues, regulatory matters, business transactions, contractual relationships, real estate interests, policy formulation and compliance, litigation, dispute resolution, collective bargaining and other human resource matters. OGC attorneys also represent the University before state courts, administrative agencies, regulatory bodies, municipal boards, commissions and in various transaction-related negotiations. They also coordinate the work of outside legal counsel retained to represent the interests of the University in judicial and administrative proceedings.

Steve Jaffe, B.S. ’80, has been elected to the Florida Justice Association’s Board of Directors. Jaffe took his oath during the Florida Justice Association’s annual Presidential Luncheon at The Breakers Palm Beach in Palm Beach on June 13.

Jaffe will assist in setting policy for the organization, act as an advocate for pertinent issues with the state legislature, fundraise and more. He will serve a two year term.

Steve Jaffe has been an impassioned advocate for individuals, families and consumers, successfully representing them in their quest for justice for 30 years. He concentrates exclusively on complex civil jury trial matters. He has focused on handling class action cases that have been certified in federal court and state courts involving fraud, false and deceptive trade practices and violations of the driver privacy protection act. He continues to serve class action clients in cases involving long term care insurance, unsafe and hazardous products, unlawful consumer charges, hidden fees and consumer fraud class action cases throughout the country.

Jaffe has assumed positions of leadership in the Broward County legal community, including his former role as president of the Broward County Justice Association. He is a member of the American Association for Justice’s Leadership Forum, a member of the Broward County Bar Association Professionalism Committee (1999-present) and is on the Board of Directors of the Stephen Booher Inns of Court (2000-present). He is also a member of the Florida Justice Association, the Mass Tort Trial Lawyers Association, the Class Action Trial Lawyers Association, and the National Trial Lawyers Association.

Peter Krotec, B.S. ’84, recently celebrated his 25-year anniversary of practicing law with Sarasota law firm Syprett Meshad. Rated AV Preeminent® by the Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™, Attorney Krotec joined Syprett Meshad in May, 1989, was named partner in 1994, and served several years as managing partner for the firm.  His practice is focused on marital and family law, and he is licensed and admitted to practice before all Florida state courts as well as the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

While attending Florida State University, Mr. Krotec was an active member of the Theta Chi Fraternity; Criminology Honor Society; Lambda Alpha Epsilon Criminology Club; and the FSU Pre Law Society. Upon completing his undergraduate studies, Mr. Krotec attended the Stetson University College of Law located at St. Petersburg, Florida, and was awarded a Juris Doctorate Degree in 1987.

Eugene Willis, B.S. ’03, J.D. ’14, graduated with his Juris Doctorate on Saturday, May 10, 2014 from Lincoln Law School of Sacramento.