If you have seen our commercials or other advertisements, then chances are you have seen the saying “Your attorneys, your neighbors.” Why? We want to convey to our clients and potential clients alike that we are local and have deep roots in Southwest Florida, that this is our community just like it is yours, and just like a friendly neighbor, we will do everything we can for you in a time of need. We recently celebrated our 50 year anniversary serving Southwest Florida, so we have had your back for a long time. There is a reason that this firm has remained successful and it is our commitment to our community.
So who are “your neighbors”? I [Chris Smith] came to Southwest Florida after graduating law school over 8 years ago. I chose Southwest Florida because I grew up vacationing here with my family and while I was in law school, my parents retired to Fort Myers. I was fortunate enough to get a job with GBCR&P right out of law school, was made a partner in the firm 3 years later by representing community members in personal injury matters to the best of my ability and the rest is history. My fiancée, Andrea Pleimling, is also an attorney with the firm, and we plan to raise our family in Southwest Florida.
My partners and co-employees have much deeper roots than I. Our managing partner, Jeff Rice, has been a Southwest Florida resident since 1976. Jeff lives in Fort Myers with his wife Bobbi. He also has a stepson David and 3 grandsons—Josh, Nate, and Jon.
Richard Purtz has been practicing in Southwest Florida for 27 years in areas of personal injury and wrongful death. He has been a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney for 22 years. He has two children Heather and Clayton, who live locally.
Stephen Buckley has lived in Fort Myers for over 50 years. He has been a Fort Myers attorney since 1969. He has been married to his wife, Bonnie, for 46 years. They have two children—Jennifer and Brian and 2 grandkids.
John Cechman has lived in Lee County for 43 years and been a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney since 1988. He lives with his wife Mary and has three kids—Joshua, Tyler and Weston and two grandkids.
Zach Gill was born and raised in Fort Myers. He has been practicing for 10 years and his wife Molly is a local teacher. Zach also has a 3 year old son Connor, who is a future Florida State Seminoles QB.
Denise D’Aprile has lived in Charlotte County for 35 years. She has two children, has been married to her husband Rick for 21 years and has been a Charlotte County attorney for 26 years.
Matt Raulerson has lived in Southwest Florida for 22 years. Has been married 20 years to his wife Bess, and has 3 kids at home – Zack 17, Chloe 14, and Will 8.
So as you can see, we really are your neighbors and we aren’t going anywhere. Being so deeply entrenched in Southwest Florida, we have a sense of duty to our neighbors and we understand the importance of being fierce advocates for our neighbors. If you are involved in an incident, whether it be a motor vehicle or motorcycle accident, bicycle accident, slip and fall, medical malpractice, or some other incident where someone else’s negligence resulted in injury or death to you or a loved one, please ask about us and then give us a call to see if we can help.