GrayRobinson, P.A. has appointed shareholder Mayanne Downs as chair of GrayRobinson’s litigation department. In this role she will lead the firm’s largest practice group and guide its more than 150 members across the state.


    “I have had the pleasure of knowing Mayanne for more than 30 years and was thrilled when she joined GrayRobinson,” said GrayRobinson President and Managing Director Byrd F. “Biff” Marshall, Jr. “I am pleased that she agreed to accept my appointment of her as chair, and I have full confidence she will exceed expectations in this role.”


    Downs has been an influential member of the Central Florida business community for more than 35 years and has practiced law for more than 25 years. Her practice areas include commercial litigation, appellate law and high-stakes domestic matters. Downs also has served as the City Attorney of Orlando since 2007, overseeing 25 lawyers and providing counsel to the mayor and city commission.


    Downs is the former president of The Florida Bar and has also been recognized by Florida Trend’s “Legal Elite,” Florida Super Lawyers, Martindale-Hubbell, Best Lawyers in America and Orlando Magazine’s 50 Most Powerful People in addition to being recommended by the state Judicial Nominating Commission for appointment to Florida’s 5th District Court of Appeal. She previously served as president of the Orange County Bar Association, president of the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association and president of the Central Florida Association for Women Lawyers.


    Throughout her career, she has handled a wide array matters, including eminent domain litigation and trials; personal injury cases; shareholder and business disputes; statutory shareholder-valuation matters; noncompete litigation; legal malpractice defense; state and federal appellate matters; and family and domestic matters involving high-net-worth and high-profile individuals. She managed one of the largest divorce settlements on record, reaching more than $200 million, in addition to class actions, representation of lawyers and law firms, jury and nonjury trials, and appeals involving matters of first impression.


    “After serving as chair for more than 15 years, I’m pleased to turn over the reins to Mayanne,” said Jeffrey D. Keiner, shareholder and immediate past chair of the litigation practice. “I have full confidence that she will be a strong leader for the practice and will continue its growth and success well into the future.”