In Government, News & Updates

Renowned attorneys David M. Delaney, Natasha S. Mickens and Ayanna Hypolite bring substantial experience to growing division.

Miami and Gainesville, Fla. – Weiss Serota Helfman Cole + Bierman expanded its education law practice and geographic footprint with the addition of Gainesville-based law firm Dell Graham. Attorneys David M. Delaney and Natasha S. Mickens join Weiss Serota as new partners, with Ayanna Hypolite on board as an associate.

The three attorneys will continue to represent clients throughout the State, specializing in litigating matters on behalf of public schools and advising them in all aspects of education law. The boutique firm fits seamlessly with Weiss Serota’s education practice, as the South Florida-based firm also represents numerous school boards and educational institutions.

“David, Natasha and Ayanna are highly regarded and dynamic attorneys,” Firm Managing Director Mitch Burnstein said. “Their arrival creates strong statewide synergies with their education law colleagues here in South Florida. We are thrilled to welcome them to the Weiss Serota family.”

Delaney serves as both general counsel and litigation counsel for public schools. As a Florida Bar Board Certified Attorney in Education Law, he is skilled at providing a clear understanding of modern education challenges. Delaney’s past experience also includes representing insurance companies and self-insured entities in the areas of governmental liability and personal injury defense, and defending health care providers against medical malpractice claims. Delaney also taught Public School Law to educational leadership graduate students at the University of Florida.

An active supporter of public education, Delaney is a mentor for children represented by Take Stock in Children, a nonprofit organization in Florida that provides a unique opportunity for deserving, low-income youth to escape the cycle of poverty through education.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for our law firm to join forces with a mid-size firm that has an impeccable track record and outstanding reputation,” Delaney said. “Our practice focus and mission align well with Weiss Serota’s. We are so excited for our future together.”

Mickens is an Education Law specialist, also being Board Certified in this area.  She focuses on employment claims  and insurance defense. She practices both in state and federal courts. Mickens previously represented employers and insurance carriers in the litigation of workers’ compensation claims, along with her insurance defense work  litigating first-party property coverage, arson and fraud.  Weiss Serota is now one of the few firms in the state with multiple Board Certified Education Law attorneys.

Hypolite is a Florida Supreme Court Certified County Court Mediator who focuses her practice on alternative dispute resolution and civil litigation. Prior to joining Dell Graham, she practiced family law, estate planning, and probate law. She also represented the State of Florida’s Department of Revenue in child support enforcement cases.

During and after law school, Hypolite worked in higher education for a total of 10 years.

Delaney earned his J.D. with honors from the University of Florida Levin College of Law. Mickens graduated from Stetson University College of Law with a J.D. and Certificate of Concentration in Advocacy. Hypolite earned her J.D. with honors from Barry University School of Law.

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