Here we go, again, talking about that taboo subject: Being a lawyer and admitting you need help. You don’t have to necessarily be depressed or even anxious. But sometimes you just need an objective set of ears to listen and guide, help you sort through stumbling blocks, identify patterns of behavior or just validate your feelings and your goals.
We are so pleased to welcome back Mayanne Downs for this special guest lecture because after her interview in the Orlando Magazine so many lawyers contacted her and thanked her for being so open (and nonchalant) about the fact she has sought out counseling and guidance. We hope this guest lecture will help you to recognize it is perfectly okay to do so.
The audio is about 39 minutes. Listen directly below.
An Orlando native, Mayanne has been part of the Central Florida business community for more than 35 years and has practiced law for 25 years. Mayanne is the firmwide chair of GrayRobinson’s extensive litigation department and is a shareholder in their Orlando office. Her practice areas include commercial litigation, appellate law and high-stakes domestic matters. Mayanne also has served as the city attorney of Orlando since 2007, overseeing 25 lawyers and providing counsel to the mayor and city commission.
Mayanne has handled a wide array of matters throughout her career, including eminent domain litigation and trials; personal-injury cases; shareholder and business disputes; statutory shareholder-valuation matters; noncompete litigation; legal-malpractice defense; state and federal appellate matters; and family and domestic matters involving high-net-worth and high-profile individuals. She managed one of the largest divorce settlements on record (more than $200 million) in addition to class actions, representation of lawyers and law firms, jury and nonjury trials, and appeals involving matters of first impression.
Mayanne has achieved a peer-based reputation for excellence in both legal management and advocacy and also has been recognized by Florida Trend‘s “Legal Elite,” Florida Super Lawyers, Martindale-Hubbell, Best Lawyers in America and Orlando Magazine‘s Best Lawyers. She also was recommended by the state Judicial Nominating Commission for appointment to Florida’s 5th District Court of Appeal.
Mayanne’s commitment to academic and intellectual excellence began in law school, where she held two senior editorial positions at the University of Florida Law Review; was chancellor of the Student Honor Court (a position also held by former Florida governor and U.S. Senator Bob Graham); was a member of the University of Florida Hall of Fame; tapped into Florida Blue Key; was received the American Jurisprudence Book Awards (for the highest academic performance in the class); and graduated with highest honors. She also was inducted in to Order of the Coif.
Mayanne is the past president of The Florida Bar (2010-2011), a mandatory bar association with more than 90,000 lawyers. As president, she traveled thousands of miles throughout Florida and the country, speaking to law organizations and newspaper editorial boards and testifying before the Florida Legislature. She implemented the first direct communication between bar leadership and bar members about legislative matters.
Mayanne also has served as president of the Orange County Bar Association, president of the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association and president of the Central Florida Association for Women Lawyers, and was a member of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar.
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