Presented by RSM US LLP
Theresa Gallion, JD is a partner in the Tampa office and the founding partner of the Tampa and Orlando offices. With more than 35 years of practice as a labor and employment attorney, she has represented clients in a wide variety of industries, with particular emphasis on colleges and universities, hospitality, healthcare, telecommunications, and retail. Theresa specializes in complex employment litigation, working in tandem with clients to determine the most appropriate path to take a case or matter to successful resolution. She has obtained countless dismissals via motions for summary judgment or other dispositive motions, thereby avoiding trial and additional cost for clients. She is also adept at early resolution of class and collective actions, thereby aiding clients to avoid the catastrophic cost inherent in such cases.
Theresa is one of the firm's most experienced trial lawyers, having successfully tried over 40 jury trials in employment cases. She specializes in complex and collective actions. In addition, a substantial portion of her practice is devoted to management training on such topics as equal employment opportunity, diversity, and management skills. Theresa is "AV" Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell and has been included in Florida Super Lawyer since 2007. She has also been listed in Chambers USA, America's Leading Business Lawyers since 2004 and in The Best Lawyers in America since 2006.
Candice C. Pinares-Baez, JD is a partner in the firm's Fort Lauderdale office. She handles all types of employment-related matters including litigating non-compete/trade secret disputes, defending employment-related lawsuits and administrative complaints encompassing a variety of issues, discrimination claims arising under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the Florida Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and other federal and state employment laws, and related tort actions.
Candice's practice includes preventive counseling, training, audits, policy reviews, drafting of contracts, defense of claims in the administrative setting, and litigation in all courts. Successfully litigating matters before state and federal courts, she also advises clients on preventive measures aimed at reducing employment-related claims. She is also a member of the firm's Education Practice Group, actively representing private educational institutions in employee, student, and board issues, working with many of the accrediting agencies and school associations. Candice is fluent in Spanish. She was listed in Florida Super Lawyers - Rising Stars in 2009. She was also honored as one of the “40 Under 40” Outstanding Lawyers of South Florida for 2016.
Lynne Johnson is a senior director at RSM and leads the Northeast region’s nonprofit tax practice. She has more than 17 years of experience serving nonprofit organizations, including educational, cultural, health and human services, healthcare, and other nonprofit organizations. She consults with her clients on matters unique to nonprofit organizations, including unrelated business income tax issues, alternative investment reporting, private use of tax exempt bond financing, compensation reporting for executives and disqualified persons, governance practices, drafting and implementing of internal policies and procedures, and issues related to maintenance of tax-exempt status. In addition, Lynne has significant experience assisting her clients in the area of tax compliance including the preparation and review of federal, state and international tax filings as well as drafting both successful tax and group tax-exemption applications and private letter ruling requests. Prior to joining RSM, Lynne had a successful career at a Big Four firm for over 14 years.
Cyndi Mergele’s broad base of human resources experience serves clients across numerous industries, including manufacturing, construction, higher education, not-for-profit, and government contracting. She has consulted with both large and small firms and has managed start-up entities. Her focus on human resources strategy, compliance, policy and program development, as well has merger and acquisition diligence and integration strategy, helps clients understand and solve their most complex work force issues. Cyndi is a frequent speaker at local and national conferences and has been published in a number of periodicals and trade publications.
Michael Botzis has extensive experience in serving higher education institutions and currently serves as RSM’s Southeast Higher Education Practice Leader. As part of this role, Michael serves clients across the Southeast, provides technical assistance to teams across the Southeast, develops thought leadership, and coordinates continuing professional education and other events. Michael has approximately 20 years of experience in public accounting, having started his career with a Big Four firm and then joining RSM in December 2005. Michael’s accounting experience also includes a wide array of assurance and consulting engagements.
Steve Mermelstein is a Director in RSM’s Management Consulting Practice and leads the Central Region Public Sector Practice focusing on Higher Education, Government, and Nonprofits. He is also the National Leader for State and Local Government for Management Consulting. Steve has nearly 20 years’ experience helping create higher performing organizations and advising clients during his career at RSM, IBM, and in private industry. Steve also has had extensive training and deployment of Lean and Six Sigma.