Meet the 34 Florida Bar Members Board Certified
in International Litigation and Arbitration
Edward “Ed” Mullins
Edward “Ed” Mullins is a semi-native Floridian who grew in Central Florida, went to college and law school in North Florida, and practices in South Florida – truly a “Florida Man.” He practices at Reed Smith LLP, an international full-service law firm with offices across the world.
Ed graduated from the University of Florida with high honors in 1986 and from the University of Florida College of Law in 1990 as the valedictorian of the Florida Law Review. Prior to joining Reed Smith in 2017, Ed was an associate and partner at Steel Hector & Davis LLP and then co-founded the international litigation and arbitration boutique Astigarraga Davis Mullins & Grossman, P.A. Ed is the former Chair of this Section and former chair of the Florida Bar Appellate Court Rules Committee. Active in the American Bar Association, Ed currently is the Revenue Officer of the ABA International Law Section and has served in leadership roles in that section and the Section of Litigation. Ed is a Chartered Institute Arbitrator, is a fellow of the American Law Institute where he consulted on the new Restatement of International Commercial and Investor-State Arbitration Law, and is ranked in many reviews including Chambers.
Ed was the inaugural chair of the Board Certification Committee for International Litigation and Arbitration and currently serves on his last year of participation on the Committee. Ed muses, “If Gary Davidson is the Godfather of the International Litigation and Arbitration Certification, that would make Ryan Reetz Tom Hayden, and just think of me as Sonny or maybe Fredo – or maybe not…that did not work out so well for them.”
Why did you become Board Certified in International Litigation and Arbitration? We worked 10 years to make this certification happen and we believe it is unique in the U.S. The thought was that, just like with Business Litigation, we need to distinguish the dispute lawyers from the good work that other international lawyers who have a more universal international practice. I was proud to be lead the committee in its inaugural year. It was tremendous work—we had to write the exam! – and we were delighted to bring in many accomplished lawyers to be in the inaugural class. As we told them – the only way to have a true board certification was to ensure that longstanding practitioners were part of that new group. We created the certification not for us but for those behind us who want to distinguish themselves from others who want to practice in the coolest area of disputes – international!
What are some benefits you received from being Board Certified? It does give you instant credibility with clients, other lawyers, and the publications as being someone who is an expert in your chosen area of practice.
Any best tips or advice to ILS Members preparing for the Certification Exam? I could tell you but I would have to kill you. Seriously, as one of the authors of the exam, I legally cannot tell you anything. I can say that I think we strived hard for a balanced test and the results have been in line in comparable certifications. The Section is working on putting together a review course and here is my pitch for those certified lawyers to start putting that together. As Gary the Godfather said when we “grandfathered” you all in, “When we did that favor for you, we said there would come a time when we would need that favor repaid, and that time is now. Look what they did to my poor Sonny!” There I go again….
To learn more about being Board Certified in International Litigation and Arbitrations, visit https://www.floridabar.org/
about/cert/cert-applications- and-requirements/ or email Ed at EMullins@reedsmith.com.