West Palm lawyer, David Spector, to head state’s biggest firm

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Incoming Akerman Chairman and CEO David I. Spector

Florida-headquartered Akerman LLP, one of the nation’s biggest law firms, has named David I. Spector, a member of its Executive Committee and co-chair of Akerman’s Fraud & Recovery Practice Group, to be its next chairman and CEO.

Spector was elected by a partnership vote Sept. 9 to serve a 3-year term that begins Feb. 1, 2018, when  Andrew M. Smulian concludes a decade-long tenure as chairman and CEO.

Akerman’s Executive Committee issued the following statement: “Andrew is one of the great law firm leaders of our time. He has guided Akerman through transformative growth while strengthening our commitment to be a client-driven, entrepreneurial and forward-thinking enterprise. His bold leadership has placed Akerman at the vanguard of our industry and positioned our firm to address the important challenges impacting our clients and our profession today and in the future.”

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Spector and Smulian

Spector, who works out of Akerman’s offices at 777 S. Flagler Drive in West Palm Beach and in Miami, is a member of the firm’s board of directors and one of seven members of its Executive Committee. He also is the founding co-chair of one of the largest legal teams in the United States dedicated to the eradication of fraud. He previously served on Akerman’s Strategic Planning Committee and is a leader in many of the firm’s client-driven initiatives.

“The vision and growth strategy articulated nearly a decade ago are being realized,” said Smulian. “This is the right time to plan for succession and David is the right leader for Akerman’s future. He is an exceptional trial lawyer and has practiced at the leading edge of innovation and business transformation. He has changed the legal landscape for his clients and I am confident that he will be just as successful as our next chairman and CEO.”

Under Smulian the firm, Florida’s largest, grew to more than 650 lawyers and expanded from 12 to 24 offices across the United States and Latin America.

Spector joined Akerman in 2009 and has built a national trial practice devoted to the investigation and litigation of complex fraud schemes, and unfair and deceptive practices, on behalf of the largest U.S. insurance companies and self-insured retailers. His work has carved a path in plaintiff-side fraud investigation and litigation, and developed case law that helps corporations recover financial losses caused by fraudulent acts.

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Akerman Chairman and CEO Andrew Smulian