Wally Pope’s dispute resolution career actually began in 2001 with his certification as a Florida circuit court mediator, but the native Floridian launches his Upchurch Watson White & Max practice with 50 years of experience as a business civil trial lawyer.
In 1967, after completing five years of active duty with the U.S. Army, Wally began studying the law at the University of Florida in Gainesville and graduated with honors in late 1969. He was Editor-in-Chief of the UF Law Review and was an instructor in logic in the undergraduate school. After graduating, he became a research aide to The Hon. Robert T. Mann of Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland. In 1970, Wally was admitted to the bar and became an associate attorney doing general civil litigation with the law firm of Trenam, Simmons, Kemker, Scharf and Barkin in Tampa.
In 1974, he joined Tim Johnson and John Blakely in Clearwater to continue their law practice as Johnson, Blakely and Pope, now Johnson Pope Bokor Ruppel & Burns, LLP. The firm has grown to about 80 lawyers based in offices in Clearwater, Tampa and St. Petersburg.
When he is not working hard to help attorneys settle their matters, he intends to continue seeking rest and recreation in Colorado, his favorite summertime getaway.
- B.A., political science, University of Florida, 1962
- A.M., political science, Boston University, 1965
- J.D., cum laude, University of Florida College of Law, 1969
Qualifications and Recognitions
- Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Civil Mediator, since 2001
- S. District Court, Middle District of Florida, Civil Mediator, since 2007
- Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ rating
- Florida Trend’s Florida Legal Elite, for business litigation
- The Best Lawyers in America®: listed under Commercial Litigation since 1991, "Bet-The-Company Litigation" since 2006, Anti-Trust Litigation (2014), Real Estate Litigation (2014), Tax Law Litigation (2014); selected as Tampa Bay’s litigator of the year in the areas of “Bet-the-Company Litigation (2011), Real Estate Litigation (2012), “Litigation & Controversy – Tax Lawyer of the Year” (2013)
- Florida Super Lawyers® for General Litigation
Admissions & Affiliations
- The Florida Bar, 1970
- U.S. District Court, Middle (1970), Southern and Northern (both 1987) Districts of Florida
- U.S. Supreme Court, 1975
- U.S. Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit, 1981
- Colorado Bar, 1999
- Clearwater Bar Association:
- Hillsborough County Bar Association
- St. Petersburg Bar Association
- American Bar Association