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A founding member of the firm in 1974, Wally has over 47 years of experience as a business civil trial lawyer. His associates voted him to be the most effective litigation trainer. The judges of the Pinellas County Circuit Court voted him the most professional civil trial lawyer in the circuit for the year 1999.

Distinctions & Memberships 

  • Admitted to The Florida Bar in 1970
  • Admitted to U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida – 1970
  • Admitted to U.S. Supreme Court – 1975
  • Admitted to U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit – 1981
  • Admitted to U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida 
– 1987
  • Admitted to U.S. District Court, Northern District of Florida – 1987
  • Admitted to U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida, Civil Mediator – 2007
  • Clearwater Bar Association, President, 1980-1981
  • Hillsborough County Bar Association Member
 St. Petersburg Bar Association Member
  • American Bar Association Member
  • The Best Lawyers in America© since 1991, in the fields of Bet-the-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, Litigation – Antitrust, Litigation – Labor and Employment, Litigation – Real Estate, Litigation and Controversy-Tax
  • Best Lawyers® “Lawyer of the Year”, 2013 Litigation Controversy-Tax,Tampa area
  • American Bar Association Member.  Former member of the Council of Litigation, and former Editor-in-Chief of Litigation, the journal of the Section of Litigation.
  • Member, Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, 1982-86


  • University of Florida B.A. – 1962
  • Boston University A.M. – 1965
  • University of Florida J.D., with honors – 1969

When He’s Not Working Hard for Clients 

Wally likes to get away to Colorado for some hiking, biking and music festivals.

Wally Pope was born February 9, 1941, in Sanford, Florida.  He graduated from Seminole High School in 1958 and from the University of Florida in 1962, with a BA in Political Science.  Upon graduation, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the US Army and went on active duty in September, 1962.  While in the military, he graduated from the Infantry Officer Orientation Course at Ft. Benning, Georgia, the US Army Intelligence School at Ft. Holabird in Baltimore, Maryland, the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California and the Advanced German Language School in Oberammergau, West Germany, in 1965.  He was the valedictorian of his German class at the Defense Language Institute.  In 1964, at the height of the Cold War he was transferred to Heidelberg, West Germany, where he spent two years as a counter-intelligence agent working closely with West German police and other investigative agencies. While in Germany, he was promoted to Captain.   In 1966, he was transferred to Karlsruhe, West Germany, where he continued his duties as a counter-intelligence agent and ultimately became the Officer in Charge of the intelligence field office in Karlsruhe.  While in Germany, he received a Masters Degree in International Relations from Boston University.  Upon completion of his tour in Germany, he was transferred to Chicago, Illinois, where he headed an Army Intelligence Field Office there.  His last duty with the US Army occurred in July, 1967, when he and his entire intelligence field office were sent to Detroit, Michigan, to aid the US Army in quelling the civil riot that occurred there in July. 

In September, 1967, upon completion of his five years of active duty with the Army, he began the study of law at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, and graduated with honors in December, 1969.  While at UF, he was Editor-in-Chief of the University of Florida Law Review and was an instructor in logic in the undergraduate school.  Upon graduation from law school, he was a research aide to The Honorable Robert T. Mann on Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland, Florida.  In 1970, he 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, Florida.  In 1974, he joined Tim Johnson and John Blakely in Clearwater, Florida, to continue their law practice under the name Johnson, Blakely and Pope.

Since 1970, Wally has been continuously engaged in the practice of general civil litigation and has been active in local, Florida and American Bar Association work. Over that time he has served in many capacities including: president of the Clearwater Bar Association; in 1980; Board of Governors of The Florida Bar; founding editor of Litigation, the Journal of the Section of Litigation of the American Bar Association including editor-in-chief and served on the Council of the Section of Litigation of the American Bar Association.

Among his many accolades include being listed in The Best Lawyers in America since 1991 in the categories of Commercial Litigation, Antitrust Litigation, Employment Litigation, Real Estate Litigation, Bet-the-Company Litigation and Tax Litigation.  For three consecutive years 2011-2013, Wally received top recognition as Tampa Bay’s litigator of the year in Bet-the-Company litigation  In 2012, Tampa Bay’s litigator of the year in real estate litigation, and Tampa Bay’s litigator of the year in the area of tax controversies.  He has also been listed in Florida’s Legal Elite, a feature of Florida Trend magazine, under business litigation and in Florida Super Lawyers under General Litigation. 

Wally has been a certified Florida Circuit Court mediator since 2001 and has been a member of the Colorado and Boulder County Bar Associations since 1999.  His civic involvement includes the chairmanship of The Florida Orchestra in 1991-1993, membership of the board of directors of the Pinellas County Arts Counsel and membership of the board of directors of Studio Art Centers International in Florence, Italy. 

He continues to practice law with the firm now known as Johnson, Pope, Bokor, Ruppel and Burns, LLP, with approximately 65 lawyers and offices in Clearwater, Tampa and St. Petersburg, Florida. 

  • Slagle v. ITT Hartford, 102 F.3d 494 (11th Cir. 1996)
  • Sandlin v. Shapiro & Fishman, 168 F.R.D. 662 (M.D. Fla. 1996)
  • Eagleview Technologies, Inc. v. MDS Associates, 190 F.3d 1195 (11th Cir. 1999)
  • Indian River County Hosp. Dist. V. Indian River Memorial Hospital, Inc. 2000 WL 121794 (Fla.4th DCA 2000)
  • Amendments to Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, 1999 WL 1289031 (Fla. 1999)
  • Stockwell v. Citizens National Bank & Trust Co., 655 So.2d 1220 (Fla. 2d DCA 1995) affd 675 So.2d 584 (Fla. 1996)
  • Searcy, Denny et al. v. Poletz, 652 So.2d 366 (Fla. 1995)
  • LeRoux v. NYNEX Worldwide Services Group, Inc., 677 So.2d 956 (Fla. 1996)
  • Blumberg v. Pinellas County, 836 F.Supp. 839 (M.D. Fla. 1993)
  • Arthur Rutenberg Corp v. Dawney, 647 F.Supp. 1214 (M.D. Fla. 1986)
  • Cone v. The Florida Bar, 626 F.Supp. 132 (M.D. Fla. 1985)
  • Aff’d Cone v. State Bar of Florida, 819 F.2nd 1002 (11th Cir. 1987)
  • Pirolo v. City of Clearwater, 711 F.2d 1006 (11th Circ. 1983)
  • Dotolo v. Schouten, 426 So.2d 1013 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1983)
  • Taylor v. Fusco Management Co., 593 So.2d 1045 (Fla. 1992)
  • Accent Homes, Inc. v. Narco Realty, Inc., 566 So.2d 5 (Fla. 4th DCA 1990)
  • Concept, Inc. v. Thermotemp, Inc., 553 So.2d 1325 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1989)
  • Tel-Ad Advisors, Inc. v. GTE Directories Corp., 523 So.2d 635 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1988)
  • Lingelbach’s Bavarian Restaurants, Inc. v. Del Bello, 467 So.2d 476 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1985)
  • St. Petersburg Yacht Charters Inc. v. Morgan Yacht, Inc., 457 So.2d 1028 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1984)
  • Flood v. Ware, 363 So.2d 1101 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1978)
  • Margolin v. Morton F. Plant Hospital Association, Inc., 342 So.2d 1090 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1977)
  • In the Matter of Port Richey Service Co., 44 B.R. 634 (M.D. Fla. 1984)
  • In Re Newton Alfred Winn, 53 B.R. 645 (M.D. Fla. 1985)
  • P.R. Marketing Group, Inc. v. GTE Florida, Inc., 747 So.2d 962 (Fla. 2nd DCA 1999)
  • P.R. Marketing Group, Inc. v. GTE Florida, Inc., 806 So.2d 597 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2002)
  • Bouchard Transp. Co., Inc. v. Updegraff, 807 So.2d 768 (Fla. 2d DCA 2002)
  • Hicks v. Home Shopping Network, Inc., 862 So.2d 905 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2003)
  • Liebreich v. Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization, Inc., 855 So.2d 658 (Fla. 2d DCA 2003)
  • Liebreich v. Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization, Inc., 816 So.2d 776 (Fla. 2d DCA 2002)
  • City of Safety Harbor v. KOS Corp., 598 So.2d 241 (Fla. 2d DCA 1992)
  • Staff v. Trafalgar Developers of Florida, Inc., 518 So.2d 981 (Fla. 2d DCA 1988)
  • Harwood v. AMP, Inc., 516 So.2d 66 (Fla. 2d DCA 1987)
  • Cruising World, Inc. v. Westermeyer, 351 So.2d 371 (Fla. 2d DCA 1977)
  • Florida Wildlife Federation v. Goldschmidt, 611 F.2d 547 (5th Cir. 1980)
  • Vacation Break U.S.A., Inc. v. Marketing Response Group & Lser Co., Inc., 169 F.Supp. 2d 1325 (M.D. Fla. 2001)
  • Vacation Break U.S.A., Inc. v. Marketing Response Group & Lser Co., Inc., 28 F.Supp. 651 (M.D. Fla. 1998)
  • Haskin v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, 995 F.Supp. 1437 (M.D. Fla. 1998)
  • Joseph D. Park, et ux., et al. v. Commissioner, TC Memo 2002-50.
  • In Re: The Henry Ford II Revocable Inter Vivos Trust, 39 Fl. Supp. 2d 98 (15th Cir. Fla. 1989)
  • Hicks v. Home Shopping Network, Inc., 862 So.2d 905 (Fla. 2d DCA 2003)
  • Technical Packaging, Inc. v. Hanchett, 992 So.2d 309 (Fla. 2d DCA 2008)
  • Curd v. Mosaic Fertilizer, LLC, 993 So.2d 1078 (Fla. 2d DCA 2008)
  • I Re Judge Michael E. Allen, 998 So.2d 557 (Fla. 2008)
  • Zarra v. Burke, 28 So.3d 191 (Fla. 2d DCA 2010)
  • Hetrick v. Ideal Image Development Corp., 2010 WL 1491947 (11th Cir. 2010)
  • Addison v. City of Tampa, 887 So.2d 334 (Fla. 2d DCA)
  • City of Tampa v. Addison, 979 So.2d 246 (Fla. 2d DCA 2007) rev. den. 980 So.2d 1070 (Fla. 2008)

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