Trenam Law Mourns Death of Founding Shareholder Marvin E. Barkin Following Nearly 60 Years of Service
Tampa, FL – Marvin E. Barkin, one of the founders of Trenam Law and a leader in the local and national legal community, passed away peacefully in his home on February 7, 2018. He was 84 years old.
Mr. Barkin left his previous firm in 1970 with eight other members in what was called Trenam, Simmons, Kemker, Scharf, and Barkin, now known as Trenam Law. He led the firm for decades and remained active into his eighties. Today, Trenam Law has more than 80 attorneys across its Tampa and St. Petersburg offices.
During his nearly 60-year career, Mr. Barkin earned a reputation as a renowned litigator. The Best Lawyers in America named him the Lawyer of the Year three times, including twice for Banking & Finance Litigation in 2012 and 2015 and once for Bet-the-Company Litigation in 2010. He also was named Lawyer of the Year by the Hillsborough County Bar Association in 1998. He served in many national and regional leadership roles, including chair of The Florida Bar Corporation, Banking and Business Law Section, The Florida Board of Bar Examiners, Florida Judicial Qualifications Committee, the National Conference of Bar Examiners and the Eleventh Circuit Committee on Lawyer Qualifications and Conduct.
“Marvin represented the very best in the legal profession. His judgment, his temperament, and his humanity set him apart from others,” said Harold “Hal” W. Mullis, fellow founder and current firm president. “While we are deeply saddened by the loss of a friend, colleague and leader, we are grateful for his role in building the firm and to the continuing impact of his memory and examples.”
Born in Winter Haven, Florida in 1933, Mr. Barkin received an undergraduate degree in political science from Emory University in 1955, where he was also the president of Tau Epsilon Pi fraternity. He enrolled in Harvard Law School and graduated magna cum laude in 1958. After returning to his native Florida and earning the highest score on the bar exam in the state, Mr. Barkin served a one-year clerkship in Miami where he met and married his wife of 58 years, Gertrude (Trudy) Parnes Barkin. The couple moved to Tampa in 1959 when he joined the Fowler, White law firm.
Mr. Barkin was a brilliant lawyer, an engaging storyteller, a practical leader with incredible judgment and a passionate sports fan. He loved the law, the office and his firm, and he took pride in never retiring. He was deeply committed to his family, and he had a gift for demonstrating loyalty, showing confidence in others and transferring them his judgment and passions.
Mr. Barkin is survived by his wife, Trudy; his children Tom, Michael and Pam; and six grandchildren. In lieu of flowers or gifts, Mr. Barkin’s family has requested donations be made to the Bay Area Legal Services in his honor.
News of Mr. Barkin’s death, along with a look back on his life and career, was included in the Tampa Bay Business Journal and is available here.