David L. Smith Attorney At Law

David L. Smith - Attorney at Law

Of Counsel

T 813.273.5000
F 813.273.5145
D 813.273.5166
Tampa 101 East Kennedy Blvd. Suite 4000 Tampa, Florida 33602

For over thirty-five years, David has been a real estate, land use, and local government law attorney. His practice includes obtaining state and local government regulatory approvals and all matters attendant to the acquisition, development and utilization of real property. He has been responsible for the application and approval of multiple Developments of Regional Impact. David has prepared, filed and obtained approval for residential and mixed-use fee simple and condominium projects. He has also documented and obtained approval for multi-use commercial, marina, retail and residential condominium and timeshare projects, including a multiphase, mixed-use timeshare residential, commercial marina project in Key West. David has assisted multistate developers with foreign jurisdiction sale solicitation requirements for projects in Florida and St. Croix. He has represented numerous lending institutions in drafting the documentation and closing all manner of real estate and commercial loans. He has worked in special assets, assisting bankruptcy practitioners with the implications of complicated business and real estate transactions. David has issued title insurance in conjunction with loans, acquisitions and developments in state and multi-state undertakings as aggregate refinancings or exchanges. He has prepared mobile home park prospectuses and a wide variety of leases as well as other real estate and development-related documentation. He also served as Tampa City attorney for more than four years and was involved in all aspects of the city’s legal concerns, including drafting ordinances, representing the city in Tallahassee, overseeing all litigation and serving as legal adviser to the mayor, the city council and the various department heads. David has served as General Counsel for the Hillsborough County Aviation Authority, Hillsborough Transit Authority (HART) and as special counsel for other special districts, municipalities and counties. He has also been involved in representing community development districts, the creation and representation of community redevelopment agencies and in related developer and local government litigation concerning same. 

  • Background

    David was born in St. Petersburg, Florida, and graduated from Bishop Barry High School, now called St. Petersburg Catholic.  He received his bachelor's degree, with high honors , from the University of Florida in 1972 and his master of arts in 1977 from the University of Chicago.  He received his juris doctor from the University of Florida in 1980, where he was also on the Law Review.  David has two children from his marriage to the late Ann Whitney Grace, Whitney Tannenbaum and Wesley Smith.  Ann died of ALS in 2004, and David married JoAnn Urofsky in 2006.  David is an avid sports fan and enjoys golf and reading as leisure activities. 

  • Education
    • University of Chicago, A.M. political science (1977)
      • Areas of concentration included political philosophy, primarily under Joseph Cropsey, and studies in the American founding, under Herbert J. Storing
    • University of Florida, J.D. (honors, 1980)
      • Law Review
      • Center for Governmental Responsibility (1977-1979)
      • Center for Eastern Water Law
      • Faculty Research Assistant – Professor Stanley Ingber
  • Admissions
    • Florida
    • Florida Supreme Court
    • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida
  • Professional Associations and Memberships
    • Hillsborough County Bar Association
    • The Florida Bar
      • Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section
        • Executive Council (five years)
        • Government Regulation and Land Use Committee, Co-Chair (four years)
        • Mobile Home Law Committee, Chair
        • Condominium Committee
      • Florida Bar CLE, Lecturer
    • American Bar Association
      • Real Estate Finance Committee
      • Environmental Law Section
      • Administrative Law Section
    • National Business Institute CLE, Lecturer
  • Awards and Recognitions
    • AV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
      • AV Preeminent Attorney - Judicial Edition, 2024
    • Avvo Rating, Top Lawyer, 2024
    • Best Lawyers in America, 2016-2024
      • Banking and Finance Law
        • Lawyer of the Year, 2019
      • Land Use and Zoning Law
        • Lawyer of the Year, 2019, 2024
      • Municipal Law
    • Florida Super Lawyers, 2008-2013
    • Florida Trend, Legal Elite, 2022
    • American Registry, Top Attorneys in Florida, Government/Cities/Municipalities Law, 2012
    • Tampa "Top Rated Lawyer," Real Estate, 2013
  • Civic
    • Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corp., General Counsel (two years)
    • Tampa Downtown Partnership
      • Board Member
      • Executive Committee Member
      • Chair, 2013-2014; 2014-2015
      • Chair Elect, 2012-2013
      • Secretary, 2010-2011
    • Tampa Bay Preschool and Kindergarten, Past Board Member and President
    • Midtown Kiwanis, Past Member
    • ALS Association, Tampa Bay Chapter, Board Member and Past President
    • Christ the King Parish, Member
    • Temple Terrace Golf and Country Club, Past Board Member and Vice President
    • Chamber of Commerce, State and Local Government Committee, Past Member and Chair
    • Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, Member
    • Leadership Florida, Class of XXVII
    • Hillsborough County Cable Advisory Committee
    • Hillsborough County Bar Foundation, Past Board Member
  • Presentations and Seminars
    • Lecturer, National Business Institute, CLE
    • Lecturer, Florida Bar, CLE