Narrative Biography: Chad S. Roberts
Pre-Law Foundations in Applied Engineering
A native of Miami, Florida, Chad Roberts graduated from The Georgia Institute of Technology – consistently ranked as one of the top ten engineering programs in the country -- with a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Science and Mechanics in 1981. His undergraduate research was in the emerging field of biometrics, and involved the mathematical modeling of three-dimensional ocular surfaces using the Moire Fringe technique.
After graduation he received a commission as a Surface Warfare Officer in the United States Navy and was assigned to the guided missile frigate USS Clark (FFG-11). Deployments with that command included the Eastern Mediterranean in support of the Multi-National Peace Keeping Force in Beirut (1983), the Persian Gulf escorting U.S. flagged carriers transiting the hostilities of the Iran-Iraq War (1984), and the Caribbean Basin conducting air interdiction operations with the DEA and United States Coast Guard (1985). Following his initial tour, LT Roberts was selected to be the pre-commissioning CIC Officer of the Navy’s third Ticonderoga Class Guided Missile Cruiser, USS Thomas S. Gates (CG-51), a computer integrated Aegis System platform. Upon separation from active duty he was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal for having conceived and validated innovative applications of the Aegis System in naval aviation Close Air Support warfare doctrine.
Florida State University College of Law
Mr. Roberts matriculated to the Florida State University College of Law in 1988. He was an Associate Editor of the Florida State University Law Review and authored a Florida public policy Note. (17 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 675) During academic year 1989-90 he served as the research assistant and speech writer to the Dean of the Law School, Talbot "Sandy" D'Alemberte, who was then President-Elect of the American Bar Association. During academic year 1990-91 he received a legislative scholarship to serve on the staff of the Judiciary Committee of the Florida House of Representatives as the staff intern. He graduated, with high honors, in 1991.
BigLaw and General Counsel
Following a year in the Jacksonville, Florida office of Foley & Lardner, LLP, Mr. Roberts joined the Aviation and Litigation departments of Holland & Knight, LLP. His practice immediately gravitated to civil litigation matters where technical issues predominate: catastrophic aviation casualties, product liability, professional negligence, intellectual property, and mass torts. He has been AV rated since 1997, and was elected to the partnership of Holland & Knight in 1998.
During this time period, Mr. Roberts served as the General Counsel of a privately held international shipping line and marine terminal operator managing regulatory compliance, corporate compliance programs, outside litigation, and risk management portfolios.
Spohrer & Dodd, P.L.
In 2000 Mr. Roberts joined Spohrer & Dodd, P.L., a preeminent trial firm with a national practice in catastrophic aviation casualties, Federal Tort Claims, mass torts, civil RICO, Qui Tam, and products liability. He has tried jury cases in state and federal courts throughout Florida and has obtained multi-million dollar verdicts as lead trial counsel. In Multi-District Litigation he has served as the Plaintiff's Committee state liaison and has successfully managed the simultaneous representation of hundreds of mass tort claimants. Mr. Roberts is Board Certified in Aviation Law by the Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization, and is an instrument rated private pilot.
Mr. Roberts has served as a board member and is past-President of Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, Inc., the community's low income legal services organization. In 2005 he was selected by the President of the Florida Bar as the 4th Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Award recipient for his sustained commitment to the provision of legal services to the parents of adult children with mental illnesses and the Northeast Florida Chapter of the National Association for the Mentally Ill. Throughout his legal career he has been involved in the American Inns of Court participating successively as Pupil, Barrister, Master, and currently a Master-Emeritus of the Chester Bedell Inn of Court.
The Roberts Firm
Mr. Roberts established The Roberts Firm in 2014. His practice is focused on the conduct of complex civil litigation is state and federal courts. He is a board certified specialist in aviation law and represents aircraft owners, Part 135 operators, and maintenance facilities.
- B.S.E., Engineering Science and Mechanics, The Georgia Institute of Technology, 1981
- J.D., with high honors, The Florida State University College of Law, 1991; Law Review, Assoc. Editor
- Holland & Knight, LLP, Litigation Partner
- Spohrer & Dodd, P.L., Litigation Partner
- Florida, 1991
- Georgia, 1992
- 11th Circuit Court of Appeals
- Southern, Middle, Northern Florida District Courts
- Florida, Georgia state courts
- The Sedona Conference
- The Project Management Institute
- American Inns of Court,
Master Emeritus, Chester Bedell Inn
- Aviation Law, Board Certified (Florida)
- Instrument Rated Private Pilot
- Jacksonville Area Legal Aid,
President, 2007; Board, 2003-2008
- Florida Bar President's Pro Bono Award,
2005, Fourth Judicial Circuit