Grimes Hawkins Gladfelter & Galvano, P.L. traces its history to 1922 in Palmetto, the City across the Manatee River from Bradenton, when E. Glenn Grimes opened the doors to his practice with Alvin B. “Abby” Rowe as Grimes & Rowe. In 1930, he moved the firm to the now historic Professional Building in Bradenton, where the practice continues today in the firm’s beautiful and historically-renovated ground floor space.
Glenn Grimes moved to Florida in 1914, having graduated from Northwestern University Law School. The firm’s practice included representation of the Florida Citrus Industry and the City of Palmetto for many years. The firm was recognized as “recommended lawyers” as referenced in the “1931 Directory of Recommended Lawyers Covering Every City and County Seat in the United States.” William C. “Bill” Grimes joined his father in 1946 shortly after his return from World War II, when the firm became known as Grimes and Grimes. Glenn practiced until his death in 1967. Bill continued a very active civil practice until 2006, doing a broad range of work, but really best known for his prowess in the courtroom. In 1957 Clyde C. Goebel joined the firm and it became known as Grimes, Grimes and Goebel. Clyde had an active civil practice until his death in 1992.
Many of our firm’s lawyers over the years went from the firm onto the judicial bench, including County Court, 12th Judicial Circuit Court and the Second District Court of Appeal. Also active in the Florida Bar Association, Bill Grimes served for several terms on the Board of Governors of the Florida Bar Association and Caleb Grimes, who joined the firm in 1978, served on the Young Lawyers Division Board of Governors. Active in the political field, Bill Grimes served in the Florida House of Representatives from 1955 through 1958 and Bill Galvano served in the Florida House of Representative for eight years until term limited out in 2010. Bill Galvano served as chairman of the Rules and Calendar Council during his last term in the Florida House before going on to serve eight years in the Florida Senate where he served as Majority Leader and was ultimately elected by his fellow senators to preside as Senate President for his final two years before reaching his term limit. The firm has always represented national state and local businesses in many endeavors – the mining industry during the beginnings of phosphate mining in Manatee County, large landowners developing multi-use projects of regional impact, including the nationally known “Lakewood Ranch,” and more recently, representing companies dealing with government procurement.
The current partners are Caleb Grimes, mentioned above and who specializes in land use and developer representation, Jack Hawkins, who joined the firm in 1985 and who specializes in litigation and mediation as a mediator, Leslie Horton Gladfelter, who represented developers in Tampa before joining the firm in 1992, bringing her extensive experience in real estate and transactions, Bill Galvano, who joined the firm in 1992 out of law school, specializing in litigation and governmental relations, Derin Parks, who joined the firm in 2005 with broad experience in transactional matters and litigation and Sacha Ross, who joined the firm in 2006 bringing with her extensive experience in bankruptcy law and litigation.
One aspect of the firm over the years is the active participation of the members in civic responsibility, from the Chamber of Commerce to youth sports leagues and all manner of organizations in between, including the YMCA, Mote Marine Laboratory, Manatee Players and the Boys and Girls Clubs. Many of the lawyers have and continue to serve as presidents or Board chairs of such organizations.