A native Floridian, Debra has over 30 years of legal experience representing financial institutions, wirehouses, insurance companies, and investment professionals, as well as insured broker-dealers, officers and directors, and financial advisers in retail, industry and employment disputes as well as in regulatory matters. Debra has handled claims exceeding hundreds of millions of dollars in court and in arbitrations filed with the NYSE, AAA, NASD, and FINRA. She also represents registered persons, institutions, and individual investors.
Education and Court Admissions
Debra earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics from New College in Sarasota, Florida, in 1980. She attended Lewis & Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon, from which she earned her Juris Doctor in 1983. She was admitted to the Oregon Bar in 1983 (and went inactive in January 2001), the Florida Bar in 1985, and the Washington State Bar in 1986 (and went inactive in January 2001). Debra is also admitted to practice in the U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Middle Districts of Florida and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
Over the course of her career, Debra has handled claims where she consistently obtains favorable outcomes and results for her clients in courts and arbitral forums. For her efforts, she has earned the highest rating possible of AV Preeminent from Martindale-Hubbell, holds an Avvo “Excellent” rating, and has been nominated by her peers as a Super Lawyer since 2012 in Securities Litigation – Alternative Dispute Resolution.
Positions & Associations
Always active in her legal community, Debra is a member of the Florida Bar and the Palm Beach County Bar Association. She is a Past President of the North County Section of the Palm Beach County Bar Association, served on a Grievance Committee of the Florida Bar, and in 2012 she was appointed to the 4th District Court of Appeal Judicial Nominating Commission where she will serve as a Commissioner and Past Chairperson until July 2016. Debra serves as a Neutral Arbitrator for the American Arbitration Association (“AAA”), as a Non-Public (industry) Arbitrator for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) as a Non-Public (Industry) Arbitrator. She is also a member of the Securities Industry Financial Markets Association (“SIFMA”) – Compliance and Legal Division.
Debra has built a track record of successfully representing clients in complex financial matters. Her understanding of securities laws and regulations helps her advocate for her clients who range from securities dealers, brokers, financial advisors, financial institutions, and investors.