2017 Seminar Agenda & Speakers

TBPA and its Seminar Committee are pleased to present the following continuing education topics and speakers for our upcoming 2017 Seminar: "Invest in Yourself!"which is scheduled to be held on Friday, November 3, 2017 at the Hilton Carillon Park Hotel in St. Petersburg!  



The day includes 7 CLE credits, including 2 ethics credits.


Early Bird Registration available through 9/1/17 for $125.00*.

Member Registration after 9/1/17 - $140.00*

Non-Member Registration after 9/1/17 - $160.00*


Payment May be Made Online or Mailed to:

Tampa Bay Paralegal Association, Inc.

P.O. Box 2840, Tampa, FL 33601


Registrations must be received by October 30, 2017 to ensure availability.  




*A cancellation fee of $20.00 will apply to all refunds.



Already registered but unable to attend? Upon request, TBPA will send you a seminar DVD with video and materials, approximately 6 to 8 weeks after the seminar, so that you may still receive your CLE credits.


TBPA reserves the right to cancel this event for any unforeseeable circumstance, change speakers, topics or schedule without notice.



How to Protect Yourself - Ethics and the Unlicensed Practice of Law

Speaker:  Maria L. Torres, Esquire - Maria Torres is currently The Florida Bar's Tampa Branch Counsel for the Unlicensed Practice of Law Department. Ms. Torres investigates and prosecutes individuals and businesses engaged in the unlicensed practice of law. Prior to becoming the Tampa Branch’s UPL Bar Counsel, she also worked as Bar Counsel with The Florida Bar’s Lawyer Regulation Department. Formerly she served as an Assistant Attorney General with the State of Florida assigned to the Children’s Legal Services Division in Tampa. In that capacity, she represented the State of Florida in dependency court proceedings. Ms. Torres has a Bachelor of Arts and a Juris Doctorate Degree from the University of Puerto Rico in San Juan, Puerto Rico.  

Personal Ethics in Today's Business Environment - What's Right and What's Wrong

Speaker:  The Honorable Christopher Nash -

















Litigating Scientific Matter


Speaker:  Ted Corless, Esq. - Mr. Corless has a broad range of litigation experience including first-chair jury trial experience in matters relating to commercial litigation, environmental law, construction law, bodily injury, advertising injury, products liability, and insurance coverage litigation. He is a lecturer in development and cross-examination of expert witnesses in a wide variety of scientific, engineering, and medical-related matters.  Mr. Corless has also served as lead counsel in jury-tried cases, as well as bench-tried and arbitration disputes. He’s provided active audit support to insurers regarding statutory compliance and drafting of policy language. Finally, he has deposed and cross examined expert witnesses in various fields, some of which include: architectural design, cardiology, civil engineering, economics, epidemiology, fire cause and origin, geotechnical engineering, geophysics, hydrogeology, internal medicine, oncology, orthopedics, otolaryngology, pathology, psychiatry, pulmonology, seismology, and toxicology.


Corless has handled dozens of sinkhole property damage trials for property owners in the Tampa area since 1998. These disputes include (but are not limited to): damages associated with sinkhole, windstorm, fire, and water. In his current capacity, he represents owners of homes, apartment buildings, commercial buildings, and condominiums in insurance claims and disputes.


He has authored and presented lectures throughout the United States on a wide variety of topics including insurance coverage, complex expert testimony, and insurance bad faith. Corless is licensed to practice law in Florida, Kansas, and Missouri, as well as several Federal District Courts and Federal Appellate Courts, and he is ranked “AV” by the Martindale-Hubbell® system for being recognized by his peers as having the highest level of excellence and professionalism.

Protecting Yourself, Your Kids and Your Assets

Speaker:  Natalie Baird, Esq. - Natalie is a Supreme Court Certified Family Law Mediator and a Board Certified attorney in Marital and Family Law.  She has litigated hundreds of Family Law matters during her career, from simple divorces involving child supportequitable distribution and timesharing to highly-contested divorces.


Natalie understands the needs and concerns of the parties and prides herself on an impartial view with the goal of mitigating the need for lengthy litigation. Well-versed in Family Law, Natalie understands that in most cases, with complicated circumstances and lots of emotions at play, there truly are no winners, only the best solutions for difficult transitions.


Her mission is to serve her clients in a professional and competent manner that provides a better life for them. At Natalie F. Baird Mediations, P.A. in Tampa Florida, she is not only a lawyer, but she has also gone through many of the same situations as her clients.


In addition to her law practice, Natalie is actively involved in the Tampa Bay community. Together with Cory Baird, they also founded a non-profit program called Are You Safe, Inc. along with two other attorneys. 

What You Need to Know When it is Time to Take Care of Your Parents


Speaker:  Matthew E. Livesay, Esq. - Matt is an Associate in Barnett, Bolt, Kirkwood, Long & Koche's Trusts and Estates and Tax Law departments. His practice covers estate planning, tax planning, business succession planning, and matters involving the administration of trusts and estates.  Matt graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Florida State University in 2010, attained his Juris Doctor from the University of Florida Levin College of Law in 2013, and was admitted to the Florida Bar in 2013.  Matt completed his LL.M. in taxation at the University of Florida Levin College of Law in 2017.


Prior to joining the firm, Matt practiced in the areas of estate planning, business, taxation, and probate and trust administration.  Matt also previously worked in a state and local tax specialty group of a Big 4 accounting firm, which focused primarily on providing clients with tax reduction strategies and planning.  Matt is a member of the Hillsborough County Bar Association, the Real Property Probate and Trust, and Tax Law Sections of the Florida Bar.


Born and raised in Chicago, Matt is an avid Chicago sports fan.



Speaker: Matthew L. Evans, Esq. - Matthew is an Associate in the firm’s Trusts and Estates and Tax Law practice groups. His practice covers estate planning, tax planning, business succession planning, and matters involving the administration of trusts and estates. Matthew has previously worked in-house at a local ship and marine repair services company, and was most recently a trust officer in the trust department of one of the nation’s most respected banks.


Matthew graduated magna cum laude from the Florida State University of law in 2011, where he served as an editor of both the Florida State University Law Review and Journal of Land Use & Environmental Law, as well as a judicial intern to Judges Alexander Paskay, Catherine Peek McEwen, Caryl E. Delano, and Michael G. Williamson of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Florida. He subsequently earned his Masters of Laws in Taxation from the University of Florida College of Law in 2014, where he was awarded the Dorini Family Graduate Tax Scholarship and served as research assistant to Prof. Martin McMahon. Prior to attending law school, Matthew received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Tampa in 2006, graduating magna cum laude and receiving the University of Tampa Presidential Scholarship.


A Jesuit High School graduate, Matthew lives in Tampa with his wife and two children. 

Investing in Success: Proper Planning and Preparation Prevents Poor Performance


Speaker:  Honorable Gregory P. Holder Judge Gregory P. Holder is a native of Melbourne, Florida. In 1971, he received appointments to the United States Air Force Academy, United States Naval Academy and the United States Military Academy. He selected West Point and, in 1975, received his B.S. Degree in Engineering and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. While serving as an Armament Systems Development Engineer in the Air Force, he attended evening classes and received his M.B.A. from the University of West Florida in 1978. Judge Holder was selected to attend Stetson University College of Law under the U.S. Air Force Funded Legal Education Program and received his Juris Doctor Degree in 1981. While attending law school, he served as Associate Editor of the Stetson Law Review and authored several published articles.


Upon graduation from law school, he served at a number of stateside and overseas military bases as an Assistant Judge Advocate and Area Defense Counsel. Upon completing his overseas remote tour in Korea, Judge Holder served as Deputy Staff Judge Advocate for the 56th Fighter Wing, MacDill Air Force Base, Florida. He resigned his regular commission in 1988 and accepted a USAF Reserve Commission serving at U.S. Special Operations Command from 1988 through 1996. He served from 1996 through 2004 as one of only six Air Force Reserve Military Judges in the world today. At the time of his retirement from the U.S. Air Force Reserve on 1 February 2004, he served as the Chief Reserve Trial Judge for the USAF. He holds the distinction of having been the only Air Force Reserve Judge Advocate holding the certifications of Master Paratrooper Wings, Air Assault Wings, as well as British Parachute Wings. He retired from the USAFR in the rank of Colonel. He is a distinguished graduate of the Air Force Squadron Officer School in residence and is a graduate of both Air Command and Staff College and Air War College by seminar. Judge Holder was awarded the 1996 Florida Bar Military Affairs Committee Clayton B. Burton Award presented annually to an attorney “who demonstrates character and leadership promoting the quality of legal services furnished to military personnel serving in Florida.” In 1999, he was also inducted into the Department of Juvenile Justice District VI Hall of Fame for sustained contributions to the reduction of juvenile crime, thereby increasing public safety. Judge Holder received the Hillsborough County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, Robert W. Patton, Outstanding Jurist Award for 1999 - 2000. He also received the Olin Mott Joshua House Golden Heart Award in 2006.


On September 8, 1994, Judge Holder was elected in a contested race as Hillsborough County Court Judge, Group 13 and was elected as a Circuit Judge without opposition in July 1996 and again in 2002 and 2008. Since being elected to the Circuit Bench, Judge Holder has served within the Juvenile Division, Family Law Division, General Civil Division and currently within the Felony Division and Veterans Treatment Court. Prior to his election to the bench, Judge Holder was a Partner with the firm of Williams, Reed, Weinstein, Schifino & Mangione, P.A. in Tampa. He practiced in the areas of commercial litigation, eminent domain as well as governmental and administrative law representing banks, corporations, credit unions as well as private clients. He currently serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of South Florida, Webster University and as Professor and Area Chair of the Law and Ethics Faculty at the University of Phoenix, Tampa Campuses and is a member of the Herbert Goldburg Criminal Law American Inn of Court.


Active in the community, Judge Holder served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Downtown Tampa YMCA from 1990 to 1995 and currently has served as an Advisory Board member for the Gasparilla Distance Classic Association since 1989. He is a member of American Legion Post 139. He is a also a member of Fellowship Lodge 265, F&AM; and, Egypt Shrine Temple. He is also an active apheresis donor with the Southwest Florida Blood Bank, having donated over nine gallons of whole blood or platelets.


Judge Holder served as a Director of the MacDill Federal Credit Union (“MFCU”) from March, 1987 through December, 1995, and as Chairman of the MFCU Board from 1990 until his Judicial election in September, 1994. Under his leadership, MacDill Federal Credit Union was selected as the National Association of Federal Credit Union’s 1991 Federal Credit Union of the Year. Moreover, in July of 1995, Judge Holder was selected as the National Association of Federal Credit Unions 1994 Volunteer of the Year for the United States. He was inducted into the District VI, Florida Department of Juvenile Justice Hall of Fame for significant contributions to the reduction of juvenile crime. He also received the 1999 - 2000 Hillsborough County Bar Association Young Lawyers’ Division Judge Robert W. Patton Outstanding Jurist Award; the Olin Mott Joshua House Golden Heart Award in 2006 and the University of Phoenix West Florida Campus Outstanding Faculty Award for 2009.


Judge Holder has been married to D. A. Kobliska for over 40 years. Dee served in both the U.S. Army and Air Force and retired from the Air Force as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1993. She currently works as a certified nurse-midwife providing OB/GYN care. They have two children; Air Force Captain Daniel, a C-17 Instructor Pilot, and Andrea, an Attorney at a Tampa law firm.

Invest in Yourself


Speaker:  Linda Odermott, RP®, OCP  - Since 2007, Linda has worked as a paralegal in complex litigation and municipal law. She has special expertise in land use, construction defect, real property and marijuana-related matters. At Dunn Carney, Linda works with attorneys in the firm’s litigation and real estate groups.


Linda’s experience includes extensive research on tribal law, treaties, franchise agreements, ordinances and resolutions of local and state agencies, case law, easements, rights of way, land use agreements, policies and regulations of government agencies, historic maps and diagrams, and public records.


An active member of the local and national paralegal community, Linda has been a panelist, facilitator and speaker at the National Federation of Paralegal Associations and Oregon Paralegal Association’s conferences. In addition, she teaches real property as a member of the part-time faculty at Portland Community College’s Paralegal Program.


Linda currently serves the Oregon Paralegal Association (OPA) as Certification Ambassador and a member of both the pro bono and annual convention committees and the Chair of the OPA 2017 Certification Scholarship Ad Hoc Committee. She previously served as the Regulation Committee Co-Chair, where she co-authored the Oregon Certified Paralegal (OCP) voluntary certification program, Director OPA Board of Directors, PR Chair, Member of the Ethics Committee, Military Outreach Coordinator, and Annual Salary Survey Chair. She currently serves NFPA as the Armed Force Coordinator and Association Management Co-Coordinator. She is a former Coordinator and member of the Regulation Review Committee, a former member of the Budget Committee and former chair of the NFPA Ad Hoc Committee appointed by the VPPII to amend the Statement on Non-Lawyer Practice in 2016.


Linda was appointed to the Oregon State Bar (OSB) Board of Governor’s (BOG) Task Force on LLLTs, serving nearly two years until a final report and recommendation was submitted to the BOG in 2016 and in November of 2016 was appointed to the OSB Futures Task Force Regulation Committee where she helped draft a report and recommendation on licensing paraprofessionals for submittal to the BOG for approval.


Linda received the NFPA Certification Ambassador of the Year Award in 2015 and the OPA Outstanding Member Award in 2015 and 2016. Linda has been active in her local association and continues to promote the paralegal profession and its advancement through certification and regulation, both locally and nationally.

TBPA is a voluntary professional association and does not make any representation, endorsement or guarantee as to the quality, reliability, competency, accuracy, business practice/standards/ethics, or professionalism of any member of TBPA.  TBPA does not conduct background checks or any other form of due diligence on any person or business applying for membership with TBPA.


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