Rufus Pennington III joined the firm as Of Counsel in 2015. He is an experienced and seasoned board-certified civil trial attorney who has served as trial counsel in litigation throughout the country in both state and federal courts for more than 30 years. He has represented clients in a wide variety of cases, from local pro bono matters all the way to United States Supreme Court proceedings.
Mr. Pennington specializes in all areas of civil litigation, including pharmaceutical products liability, commercial disputes, intellectual property and trade secrets, environmental litigation, insurance disputes, personal injury, wrongful death and medical malpractice. He graduated from Duke University and University of Florida Levin College of Law before beginning his practice in Jacksonville.
Mr. Pennington holds an “AV” rating according to the Martindale-Hubbell legal rating service. He has been recognized by Fellowship in a number of elite, invitation-only organizations for his excellence as a trial lawyer, including the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, the International Society of Barristers and the American Board of Trial Advocates.
Pro bono work, or representing clients without charge, is and always has been an integral part of Mr. Pennington’s practice. Each week, he spends a few hours helping people who, due to personal circumstances, need legal help but cannot afford to hire a lawyer. He says he finds this to be the most rewarding part of his week. Over the years, his pro bono work has included environmental issues, the Sheriff of St. Johns County, the State Attorney for the 7th Judicial Circuit, the Superintendent of Schools, the Republican and Democratic Parties of St. Johns County, the Chamber of Commerce, the student body and faculty of Nease High School, and various other community groups. He even represented the organized plaintiff’s trial bar as amicus curiae before the United States Supreme Court in two cases regarding restrictions on lawyer advertising and solicitation.
Pennington shares the same philosophy the firm is founded upon, “The law is not just a business – it is a profession; and that our calling as lawyers is ultimately to public service,” said Pennington. “I have respected Howard [Coker], Jake [Schickel], Charles [Sorenson] and the work they’ve been doing for years and I’m proud to join their ranks.”