Law Firm Founded in The Days of Addison Mizner and Charles Lindbergh
Continues to Grow And Benefit The Community
Continues to Grow And Benefit The Community
Cake and reminiscing were plentiful at the Law Offices of Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, PLLC (LLL&S) today as the firm celebrated its historic leadership role in and contributions to the legal, business and philanthropic fields in Palm Beach County and the State of Florida on its 85th anniversary. The third oldest law firm in Palm Beach County was founded by Joseph Lesser in 1927, the same year that Calvin Coolidge was president, Charles Lindbergh made the first non-stop transatlantic flight from New York City to Paris in the Spirit of St. Louis, and locally, the Breakers celebrated its first anniversary after its rebuild and the first flight of Pan American Airways took off from Key West to Havana, Cuba.
“I can remember my grandfather telling me how he took my grandmother away from her close-knit family — especially her sisters — in Rome, Georgia to ‘make it’ in the real estate boom here touted by Addison Mizner, only to find that the moment he stepped off the train…the boom went bust,” said LLL&S Managing Partner Gary Lesser, Joseph Lesser’s grandson. “He quickly transitioned his real estate career to the practice of law, hanging his shingle on Narcissus Avenue in West Palm Beach…where the legacy for Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith took root.”
Under Gary’s stewardship, the firm grew from two attorneys and one assistant when he joined his father Shepard Lesser in 1992 at a 2,000-square-foot storefront office location in downtown West Palm Beach, to include new partners (Joseph B. Landy joined in 2001; Michael Smith in 2004), 10 attorneys and 17 staff operating from a 15,000-square-foot free-standing headquarters it owns on Northpoint Parkway in West Palm Beach. In addition, the firm has offices in a 12,000-square-foot office building it owns in Boca Raton, and a 7,000-square-foot office complex it owns in Stuart, Florida.
LLL&S focuses on serious personal injury and wrongful death cases, having delivered significant verdicts and settlements for its clients. All firm attorneys are “AV” rated by Martindale-Hubbell for demonstrating the highest level of legal ability and ethics. Reflecting the respect of their peers in the legal, business and nonprofit communities, firm attorneys have been elected to serve in key leadership positions for The Florida Bar, Palm Beach County and Martin County Bar Associations, Palm Beach County Medical Society, Business Development Board of Palm Beach County, Florida Atlantic University Foundation, Autism Speaks, and the Jewish Federation of the Palm Beach County. Balancing job performance with a strong belief in community service — as inspired by founder Joseph Lesser — continues to serve as the firm’s key cornerstone value.
“Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith has been at the ground floor of Palm Beach County for nearly a century,” noted Florida Bar President Scott Hawkins, himself a West Palm Beach lawyer with the venerable firm of Jones, Foster, Johnston & Stubbs, whose roots go back to 1924. “I first worked with Shepard Lesser in the late 1980’s when I was a young lawyer. He was exceedingly courteous and solution-oriented. Since that time, I have gotten to know Gary Lesser, who displays the same qualities and has become a very important leader in The Florida Bar. I wish the firm continued success.”
When asked what he thinks would make his grandfather proud, Gary Lesser noted three areas: “the firm’s unwavering commitment to excellence in client service, strictest adherence to the Florida Bar’s professionalism and ethics, and the broad, diverse community outreach and public service we impart to enhance the well-being of our community and beyond.”
“What I think my grandfather would be most proud of is the tremendous community ‘giveback’ mission of our firm that has been driven by the three-generation family/firm legacy of community involvement he inspired,” added Gary. Joseph was a regional President of and a volunteer for the Lion’s Club and was involved in the Salvation Army most of his life, at one point serving as regional General Counsel. He was a founder and the first President of Temple Beth El, Palm Beach County’s first Conservative synagogue, and a founder and one of the first Presidents of the local B’nai B’rith chapter. Joseph was recognized by a number of organizations for his community involvement and leadership, most notably receiving the 1978 Ben Gurion Award from the State of Israel Bonds, a coveted award given to those who perpetuate the vision of Israel's first prime minister for the future of the country. Elie Wiesel was presented the honor in 1975.
In the past 18 months, the boutique-size firm contributed more than $400,000 in donations and sponsorships to support vital charity and business missions of South Florida, including health, medical research, education, special needs, humanitarian/human rights, veterans, arts and culture, economic development, legal aid organizations, and other causes, and provided more than 2,500+ hours of pro bono legal services and community service. This year LLL&S has given a major gift to the athletics program of Florida Atlantic University that has been commemorated with a concession stand named for the firm in the new FAU Stadium. It has also dedicated a bench at the entrance to the new Palm Beach County Bar Association building.
Shepard Lesser added his father would also be pleased to know that in the past year his grandson Gary was peer-elected to The Florida Bar Board of Governors, and was recognized for the fifth time by Florida Trend Magazine as a Legal Elite and being inducted into its Florida Legal Elite Hall of Fame (only 56 Florida attorneys — out of 93,000+ — named Legal Elite for five years). Gary was born (1967) and raised in West Palm Beach; graduated from Forest Hill High School; earned a B.A. in International Affairs, George Washington University, 1989 and earned J.D., University of Miami School of Law, 1992 (where he was a member of Bar & Gavel Society, and served as Associate Editor of the Yearbook of International Law and Editor-in-Chief of Res Ipsa Loquitur, the law school's newspaper).
For more information on LLL&S services and its offices in West Palm Beach, Stuart and Boca Raton, call (561) 655-2028 or visit the Firm’s website at www.lesserlawfirm.com.
From left (partner today): Mickey Smith, Gary Lesser, Shepard Lesser, Joe Landy
From left: Firm Founder Joseph Lesser and Shepard Lesser
A Young Joseph Lesser-Firm Founder
Three generations of Lesser men: From left: Gary Lesser, Joseph Lesser, Shepard Lesser
Firm Founder Joseph Lesser working at his desk