Overview

Jim Davis, a member of Holland & Knight's Public Policy & Regulation Group, draws upon his 18 years of experience in the public sector as an elected official and 14 years in the private sector as a commercial litigator to provide strategic legal, legislative and regulatory counsel to clients in Florida, the District of Columbia, across the country and internationally. The Best Lawyers in America guide has recognized Mr. Davis as a top professional in Government Relations from 2014-2020. Mr. Davis maintains offices in Washington, D.C., and Tampa.

Mr. Davis works with clients in the areas of healthcare, international trade and foreign relations, telecommunications and financial services. His experience serving on the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee and the U.S. House Committee on International Relations gives Mr. Davis a unique perspective and allows him to decipher regulatory and legislative developments that may impact clients across various industries.

Prior to joining Holland & Knight, Mr. Davis served in the U.S. House of Representatives for 10 years, representing the city of Tampa and portions of St. Petersburg, Bradenton and Hillsborough County, Florida. In 2006, Mr. Davis was the Democratic nominee for governor of Florida.

While in Congress, Mr. Davis served on the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee, focusing on healthcare, telecommunications and electronic commerce, energy and the environment, and consumer protection issues. As a member of the Subcommittee on Health, Mr. Davis wrote and passed legislation to protect seniors and other Medicaid beneficiaries from wrongful eviction from nursing homes and also led opposition to congressional interference in personal end-of-life decisions of terminal patients. On the Communications and Technology Subcommittee, Mr. Davis helped write legislation modifying the law on obscenity and indecency governing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and television and radio industries. Mr. Davis used his position on the Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change to pass bipartisan legislation in several Congresses to protect the Florida Gulf Coast in cases of offshore oil and gas exploration. On the Oversight and Reform Subcommittee, Mr. Davis actively investigated healthcare fraud and major consumer issues. At Holland & Knight, Mr. Davis continues his focus on healthcare and represents hospitals and healthcare providers. He also works on telecommunications and electronic commerce issues, representing companies on competition, privacy and other consumer and regulatory issues.

Mr. Davis also served on the U.S. House Committee on International Relations to advance U.S. foreign relations in Central and South America, the Middle East and East Asia. Mr. Davis was elected by his peers as president of the Democratic Freshman Class in 1997, and in that position, helped spearhead a bipartisan effort to enact landmark campaign finance reform. As co-chair of the U.S. House New Democratic Coalition, a group of centrist Democrats, Mr. Davis was a leader in the development and passage of several major trade agreements, including modernizing U.S. trade relations with China and South America, and implementing the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Mexico and Canada. Mr. Davis continues his foreign relations and international trade focus at Holland & Knight. He is working on implementation of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) by helping companies decipher legislative and regulatory trade issues. Mr. Davis also works with sovereign governments and U.S. territories in furtherance of U.S. relations.

Before entering Congress, Mr. Davis was a State Representative in the Florida House of Representatives from 1988 to 1996 and served as the House Majority Leader in 1995 and 1996. In the Florida Legislature, as chairman of the Public Utility Subcommittee, he wrote and passed legislation to promote renewable energy and demand side management and energy efficiency reforms in the electric utility, natural gas, and construction and development industries. He was also instrumental in enacting legislation to increase competition in the natural gas, telecommunications and cable television industries. On the House Health Care Subcommittee, Mr. Davis worked closely with Florida Gov. Lawton Chiles to develop and enact landmark healthcare and health insurance reform.

Prior to his political experience, Mr. Davis worked in private practice in Tampa as a commercial litigator for 14 years with two major Tampa law firms. While in law school, the Tampa native served as chairman of the moot court team and, as an undergraduate, was a member of the Washington and Lee Executive Committee honor council. Mr. Davis is also a political commentator on Tampa Bay-area, state and national media.

Resident in the District of Columbia office solely to provide law related services, and not engaged in the general practice of law unless under the supervision of lawyer licensed to practice in the District of Columbia.

Experience

Credentials

Education
  • University of Florida Levin College of Law, J.D.
  • Washington and Lee University, B.A., with honors
Bar Admissions/Licenses
  • Florida
Memberships
  • Gasparilla Music Festival, Advisory Board
  • U.S. Global Leadership Coalition
  • Autism Shifts Advisory Board, 2019-Present
  • Washington and Lee University Reunion Committee, 2019
  • The First Presbyterian Church of Tampa Inc., President, 2018-Present; Member, Church Session, 2008-2018
  • Akilah Institute Global Advisory Council, 2017
  • Moving Hillsborough Forward, Co-Chair, 2010
  • WEDU Board of Directors, 2009-2017
Honors & Awards
  • Top Lawyer, Government Relations Practice, Tampa Magazine, 2016
  • The Best Lawyers in America guide, Government Relations Practice, 2014-2020
  • Florida Chamber of Commerce Champion of Free Trade, 2001
  • Allen Morris Most Promising First-Term Member, Florida House of Representatives, 1990

Publications

Speaking Engagements

News