Cobb Cole

Cobb Cole

Built on values of excellent client care, diversity of focus, accessibility, collaboration, and community service, Cobb Cole remains committed to the expectation of excellence set forth by its founders 85 years ago.

Firm Overview

Our attorneys will apply that dedication to excellence to your legal goals, whether you need a real estate contract reviewed, representation in a complicated corporate lawsuit, or require counsel for a variety of interdependent legal concerns.

Cobb Cole supports a wide range of practice areas and boasts some of the most successful and experienced Florida employment law attorneys, business law attorneys, real estate law attorneys, tax law attorneys, land development law attorneys, and family law attorneys in the state, with specialists available to provide elite counsel in multiple areas.

Recently awarded a "2012 & 2013 Top Ranked Law Firm" based on the AV-Preeminent Ratings by Martindale-Hubbell, Cobb Cole is the largest civil law firm in East Central Florida and has represented some of Florida's most reputable companies and individuals. We would be honored to add your name or business to that list.

We thank you in advance for your interest in The Cobb Cole Team - a unique, collaborative environment with attorneys who endeavor to provide exceptional service to clients in a variety of practice areas. We hope that our site helps to familiarize you with our history, team, and the passion with which we have served our community for more than eight decades.
Main Office
Main Office
149 South Ridgewood Avenue, 7th Floor, Cobb Cole Center, P.O. Box 2491
Daytona Beach  FL  32115
Phone
  • 386-255-8171
Websites
Estate Planning
Cobb Cole's Estate Planning Practice Section focuses on the preparation of wills, revocable and irrevocable trusts and other documents.
Cobb Cole's Estate Planning Practice Section understands the need to adapt each estate plan to the client's individual needs, whether it is the need to minimize federal estate taxes or the desire to ensure that the client's possessions are passed on to the people he or she cares for. Cobb Cole's Estate Planning Practice Section focuses on the preparation of wills, revocable and irrevocable trusts and other documents needed to structure estate plans designed to address a wide variety of planning needs, including who succeeds to control of the family business and setting up charitable entities that carry out a client's philanthropic interests.

Heather Bond Vargas

Ms. Vargas is a shareholder at Cobb Cole and has been practicing intellectual property law in the community since 2000. Her intellectual property practice centers on registration, licensing, administrative dispute proceedings, and litigation for trademark and copyright matters. She also advises clients in connection with website, e-commerce, and technology law issues, including compliance with federal privacy, anti-spam, and copyright infringement laws. Ms. Vargas has written several articles about intellectual property issues for local publications and regularly presents to community and business groups about intellectual property protection and enforcement. Ms. Vargas is Board Certified by the Florida Bar in intellectual property law, and is AV Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest rating possible.

In addition to her intellectual property practice, Ms. Vargas has been assisting business owners and individuals with estate planning, probate, and guardianship matters since 2010. Her estate planning practice centers on the analysis of a client's assets and family situation to determine the type of estate planning that will best serve the client's needs, including business succession planning, avoidance of probate and guardianship, and planning for non-traditional families.

Ms. Vargas is a native of Daytona Beach. After receiving her undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Richmond, she practiced law in California before returning home in 1999 with her husband, Omar. They have two children, Diego and Abigail.

Ms. Vargas was actively involved in the capital campaign to build the STAR Family Shelter for homeless families with children and served as the president of the STAR Board for the first three years of operation. Out of gratitude for her service, the STAR Center's medical center is named for her and her family. Ms. Vargas is currently serving on the Board of Halifax Urban Ministries, which provides homeless prevention services and operates the STAR Family Center.
Education
  • University of Richmond
    J.D.

Harold C. Hubka

Mr. Hubka began practicing as a trial lawyer and now has over 20 years experience in commercial litigation. Currently, he practices with Cobb Cole's litigation section, but his practice is not limited to commercial litigation. During his career, Mr. Hubka has expanded his practice to the areas of real property, corporate, contract, and health care law where his litigation experience can help craft solutions to difficult "deal" issues and draft contracts designed to withstand scrutiny in litigation. His expansion into these practice areas was primarily at the request of clients who desired that he continue to provide legal services after representing them in litigation.

With his broad base of experience, Mr. Hubka not only assists clients with contract litigation, construction litigation, construction liens, foreclosures, and foreclosure defense, but he also routinely handles real estate transactions, including closings, loans, and title insurance policies. Mr. Hubka additionally oversees business transactions from the formation of entities to negotiation of contracts, including but not limited to contracts for the purchase and sale of businesses. In particular, Mr. Hubka has developed a client base of physicians, physicians' groups, and other health care organizations and can assist them with matters such as employment agreements, purchase and sale of physician practices, buy-out agreements, STARK law issues, and Anti-Kickback statute issues.

While in law school Mr. Hubka served as Chairman of the International Moot Court Team from 1973-74 and Executive Editor of the Law Review from 1973-74.
Education
  • University of Florida College of Law
    J.D.

Scott W. Cichon

A native of Daytona Beach, Mr. Cichon graduated as valedictorian from Seabreeze High School in 1977 prior to continuing his education at the University of Florida. While in law school, he served as an editor of the University of Florida Law Review. Mr. Cichon practiced law for four years in Palm Beach County, Florida before joining the firm in 1988. He has been a partner in the firm since 1992. Mr. Cichon practices commercial litigation concentrating on actions involving real property, foreclosures, secured transactions, debtor/creditor law, bankruptcy, sales, eminent domain, construction law, broker/customer relations, and all manner of contracts.
Education
  • University of Florida Levin College of Law
    J.D.

Robert A. Merrell, III

Mr. Merrell is a member of the Land Use and Environmental Law, Local Government Law, and Administrative Law Sections of The Florida Bar, as well as the Natural Resources, Energy and Environmental Law Sections of the American Bar Association. He has been an active member of various local government advisory boards, including the Volusia County Environmental and Natural Resources Advisory Committee (past Chairman), the Halifax and Indian River Task Force and the Volusia County Economic Development Strategic Planning Working Group. He is a member of the Surfcoast Chapter of the Florida Planning and Zoning Association, the Daytona Beach/Halifax Area Chamber of Commerce and is a past Chairman of the Volusia County Association for Responsible Development. He is a graduate of Leadership Daytona (class of 1989) and a past member of the Board of Directors of the Red Cross Coast to Coast Chapter. Mr. Merrell is admitted to the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida and the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. He has experience in zoning, environmental permitting, comprehensive planning, variances, subdivisions, code enforcement and Developments of Regional Impact, with a primary focus on representation of land development interests.
Education
  • University of Florida Levin College of Law
    J.D.

Bruce A. Hanna

Mr. Hanna represents a wide variety of clients from individuals to large national corporations, and he is routinely sought after for his grasp of complex legal issues to represent parties in difficult or unusual cases. Mr. Hanna's practice areas include professional liability litigation, defense of insurance agents and brokers, business transaction litigation, and litigation relating to shareholder disputes as well as corporate director and officer liability.
Education
  • Marquette University Law School
    J.D.

John P. Ferguson

John Ferguson has served as President and Chairman of the Board of Directors for Cobb Cole, P.A., since January 2010. He joined the firm through the law clerk program in 1991 and has continuously practiced with Cobb Cole since that time.

While Mr. Ferguson was born in Halifax Hospital in Daytona Beach, he grew up in Bradenton Florida, and returned to the Halifax Area after Law school with his wife Kelly Ferguson. Mrs. Ferguson is the Executive Director of Futures, Inc., the education foundation for Volusia County public schools. Mr. Ferguson and his wife have two (2) children and live in Ormond Beach.

Mr. Ferguson practices in the areas of merger and aquisitions, business organization and transactions, franchise law, commercial finance, international law, and general corporate and contract law.
Education
  • Florida State University College of Law
    J.D.

Thomas J. Leek

Mr. Leek is a shareholder in the law firm of Cobb Cole. He is a commercial civil litigator of all business matters with the dominant portion of Mr. Leek's practice coming in labor and employment law. Mr. Leek represents employers in managing employee relations, from the negotiation and preparation of employment contracts to the litigation of federal and state anti-discrimination and retaliation claims, including Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. Mr. Leek also regularly enforces and defends contracts in restraint of trade, i.e., non-compete agreements, and practices in the firm's commercial litigation section.

Mr. Leek received his Juris Doctorate from Stetson University College of Law, cum laude, where he was a recipient of the Victor O'Whele Trial Advocacy Award. Mr. Leek is a member of the American Bar Association, the Florida Bar Association and the Volusia County Bar Association. He is licensed to practice in all courts of the State of Florida, and has argued before the Florida Supreme Court. Additionally, Mr. Leek is licensed to practice in the United States Supreme Court, the District Courts of the Middle District of Florida, the Northern District of Florida, and the Southern District of Florida. The predominant portion of Mr. Leek's practice is in Florida, but Mr. Leek goes where his clients need him and thus he has also been admitted to practice pro hac vice in Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, New Jersey and Tennessee. In 2011, Mr. Leek was awarded the coveted Peacemaker Award by Brown & Brown, Inc., which is an award honoring the achievement of superior results in litigation given by Brown & Brown, Inc. to a select few lawyers across the country.

Prior to practicing law, Mr. Leek served two legislative sessions as the chief legislative aide to The Honorable William E. Sublette, Florida House of Representatives, District 40 (1992 - 1994). At present, Mr. Leek is active in the community, and is the immediate past Chairman of the Daytona Regional Chamber of Commerce and is currently the Chairman of the Daytona Community Foundation. In 2010, Mr. Leek was appointed to the inaugural North East MyRegion Board of Advisors; an organization designed to approach the way we live, learn, work and play from a Central Florida regional perspective. Mr. Leek also serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Junior Achievement of Volusia County, is a board member of the Floridian Community Foundation, Inc., is a member of the Checkered Flag Committee, Inc. of Daytona's International Speedway Corporation, is a member of the Volusia County Civil Trial Lawyers Association, a member of Dunn-Blunt Inns of Court, is the past president of the Daytona Beach Partnership Association (an association of businesses and individuals interested in revitalizing downtown Daytona Beach), a former member of the board of Central Florida Legal Services, Inc. (an entity whose goal is to provide free legal services to the poor), and a former board member of the local chapter of the American Red Cross. Mr. Leek is also a graduate of Leadership Daytona Class XX and a regular speaker in the community on employment law issues.

Mr. Leek is married to Michelle D. Leek, with two daughters, Alexandria and Sarah. In addition to his community activities, Mr. Leek coached middle school basketball for his two daughters.
Education
  • Stetson University College of Law
    J.D.

Mark A. Watts

Mr. Watts is a member of the firms' Administrative, Land Use and Environmental Law Department. His practice is focused on representing landowners and developers in securing entitlements and regulatory approvals for the development of their land. In addition, Mr. Watts is experienced in structuring infrastructure financing through the use of special assessment districts, community development districts, tax increment financing and other creative financing strategies.

Mr. Watts graduated from Florida State University in 1995 with a degree in International Affairs. He received a Juris Doctor from Stetson University College of Law in 1998. Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Watts served as an Assistant County Attorney in Pinellas County. He is a member of the Florida Bar and the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

Mr. Watts is a native of Volusia County and is actively involved in the community. In addition to his local volunteer work with non-profit organizations, Mr. Watts and his wife, Natasha, are actively involved with local youth sports, musical programs and scouting on behalf of their three children.
Education
  • Stetson University College of Law
    J.D.

Andrea M. Kurak

Ms. Kurak focuses her practice in the areas of corporate and business law, including business organizations, mergers and acquisitions and commercial finance, counseling both established business clients, as well as start up companies in all aspects of federal, state, and local law affecting their businesses. She frequently advises business clients in connection with the acquisition or disposition of stock and/or assets, and has assisted clients in the closing of transactions with purchase prices ranging from several hundred thousand dollars to several hundred million dollars. In addition, Ms. Kurak assists business clients with contract preparation, review and negotiation, and advice pertaining to regulatory matters.

A fifth generation native of Washington, D.C., Ms. Kurak now proudly makes her home in Southeast Volusia County.
Education
  • Stetson University College of Law
    J.D.

Matthew S. Welch

Mr. Welch was raised in Ormond Beach, Florida, and after graduation from Seabreeze Senior High School, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. During his enlistment, he was stationed primarily in California and was deployed to the Persian Gulf and Somalia, playing an active role in Operations Desert Shield and Restore Hope. Having proudly served his country, Mr. Welch then attended the University of Central Florida while managing high-volume restaurants. Mr. Welch was on the President's List or Dean's List every semester, was a member of Phi Alpha Delta pre-law fraternity, and was elected to the Golden Key National Honor Society. Mr. Welch was also the recipient of the Phi Alpha Delta Scholarship and the Department of Criminal Justice/Legal Studies Certificate of Achievement. He graduated in 1998 with a Bachelor of Arts in Legal Studies.



After graduation, Mr. Welch embarked on his legal education at the University of Florida Frederic G. Levin College of Law. He was awarded the Book Award for the Pro Se Clinic in recognition of achieving the highest mark. In 2001, Mr. Welch received his Juris Doctor degree and returned to his home town to launch his legal career.



Mr. Welch is admitted to the Florida Bar, the United States District Court for the Middle and Northern Districts of Florida, and the United States Court of Appeal for the Eleventh Circuit. Mr. Welch is an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors of the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division. He is general counsel and serves on the Board of Directors of Halifax Habitat for Humanity. He is a past President of the Volusia County Bar Association and a past President of the Young Lawyers Division of the Volusia County Bar Association. He represents clients in the areas of real estate, commercial litigation, business issues, and employment law. He is a graduate of Leadership Daytona Class XXIV and Ormond Beach Leadership II. While not working, Mr. Welch enjoys running, cycling, traveling, cooking, and spending time with his family.
Education
  • University of Florida Levin College of Law
    J.D.

Kelly Parsons Kwiatek

A native of Daytona Beach, Kelly Parsons Kwiatek is a commercial litigator with an expertise in employment and labor law. Ms. Parsons Kwiatek represents many of Volusia County's universities and businesses in all matters of employment law. Specifically, she represents employers in managing employee relations, from the negotiation and preparation of employment contracts to the litigation of federal and state anti-discrimination and retaliation claims, including the Florida Civil Rights Act, Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and the Fair Labor Standards Act. She also regularly enforces and defends contracts in restraint of trade, advises clients on their day-to-day operations related to employment law, and handles appeals.

Ms. Parsons Kwiatek is an active leader in Daytona Beach serving on the Board of Directors of Easter Seals of Volusia and Flagler Counties as well as the Daytona Regional Chamber of Commerce. Ms. Parsons Kwiatek is a member of the Halifax Area Civic League and also serves on the Nuisance Abatement Board for the City of Daytona Beach. Ms. Parsons Kwiatek holds a AV rating, the highest rating obtainable by an attorney from Martindale-Hubbell.
Education
  • Florida State University College of Law
    J.D.

Michael J. Woods

Mr. Woods graduated from the University of Florida in 2000 with a B.A. in Political Science. In 2004, he received a Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the University of Florida Levin College of Law. While in law school, Mr. Woods earned a book award in Trial Practice and honors for Appellate Advocacy, later becoming a teaching assistant for Legal Research and Writing as well as Appellate Advocacy. He also served as Justice of the Fletcher Chapter of Phi Alpha Delta. During law school Mr. Woods worked for two years as a clerk for the University of Florida Office of the Vice President and General Counsel. Mr. Woods holds an AV rating, the highest rating obtainable by an attorney from Martindale-Hubbell, an international database that provides information for lawyer referrals.
Education
  • University of Florida Levin College of Law
    J.D.

Katherine Hurst Miller

Ms. Miller joined Cobb Cole following a successful experience in the firm's 2005 summer clerk program and a strong showing at Stetson University College of Law. At Stetson, Ms. Miller was a Law Review Editor, a Moot Court world champion, a Teaching Assistant for several faculty members, and the recipient of multiple awards, including book awards for the highest grades in Corporations and Administrative Law.

At Cobb Cole, Ms. Miller's practice focuses on litigating commercial contract and tort disputes in both state and federal court. She also represents clients in forums for alternative dispute resolution, including negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. Additionally, she provides advice to companies, associations, and individuals to help them minimize risk and avoid litigation.
Education
  • Stetson University College of Law
    J.D.
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