Willie Gary’s vast appeal stems from his desire to be the best and a passionate work ethic he learned through his humble beginnings. One of 11 children of Turner and Mary Gary, Willie Gary was born July 12, 1947 in Eastman, Georgia and raised in migrant farming communities in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas.
His unwavering desire to earn a college education ultimately led him to Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina where the all-state high school football player would earn an athletic scholarship after being told there was no room for him on the team. Gary went on to become the co-captain of Shaw’s football team during the 1969, 1970 and 1971 seasons.
Earning a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Gary went on to North Carolina Central University in Durham, North Carolina where he earned a Juris Doctorate in 1974. Upon earning his law degree, Gary returned to Florida with his childhood sweetheart, Gloria, now his wife.
Gary was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1974 and opened his hometown’s first African American law firm with the help of Gloria, who assisted him at his new practice. Gary’s practice has since grown into the thriving national partnership known as Gary, Williams, Finney, Lewis, Watson & Sperando, P.L., consisting of 37 attorneys, a team of paralegals and a professional staff of over 100. The firm operates out of four offices. Two of the four offices are located on the St. Lucie River in historic downtown Stuart, Florida; one of which is the former Pelican Hotel where Gary worked as a dishwasher during his teenage years. The third office overlooks the Indian River Lagoon in Fort Pierce, Florida and the newest office recently opened in downtown Orlando, Florida.
Gary is a member of the National Bar Association, the American Bar Association, Association of Trial Lawyers of America, American Association for Justice, Martin and St. Lucie County Bar Associations and the Million Dollar Verdict Club. He has tried cases in 45 states and is in great demand as a motivational speaker throughout the U.S., delivering speeches at law schools, universities, churches, chambers of commerce and to various groups throughout the country.