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Kelly Overstreet Johnson


Kelly Overstreet Johnson, office managing shareholder in Baker Donelson's Tallahassee office, is a past president of The Florida Bar, the third largest bar in the country.

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Professional Biography


Ms. Johnson is AV® rated by Martindale-Hubbell, which recognizes outstanding achievement and demonstrates that a lawyer has earned from their peers the highest rating available for their legal ability and professional ethics. She was the first woman elected president of the local bar association in 1990, and repeatedly receives recognition as a Super Lawyer and Legal Elite.

Ms. Johnson handles a wide variety of cases in both state and federal court, including commercial, real estate and employment discrimination defense matters. Examples of cases she has litigated include breach of contract matters such as non-competition agreements and issues relating to hospital privileges and other health care matters; claims for deceptive and unfair trade practices; defense of employment-related claims before the EEOC and Florida Commission on Human Relations, and subsequent state and federal complaints involving these employment claims; real estate litigation involving such matters as foreclosures and breach of guaranty agreements; claims for fraud in the inducement involving owners, developers and condominium owners resulting from a failed project; and defending matters brought under the False Claims act including actions involving Medicaid reimbursement. Her clients include banks, business owners and individuals that need and receive responsive and competent advice and representation.

Ms. Johnson uses her litigation skills and background as a sought-after mediator in Tallahassee and across the state. She serves as an AAA arbitrator for commercial matters.

Professional Honors & Activities
  • Certified Circuit Civil Mediator
  • Certified AAA Arbitrator
  • The Florida Bar (President, 2004 – 2005; President-Elect, 2003 – 2004; Board of Governors, 1997 – 2003; Judicial Independence Committee, 2005 – 2011; Chair, Annual Meeting Committee, 1996; Young Lawyers Division Board of Governors, 1986 – 1990)
  • American Bar Association (Officer, Council of the Section of Litigation, 2012 – 2015; Member, House of Delegates, 1992 – 1994, 2003 – 2006; Co-chair, Litigation Section Committee, 2006 – 2013)
  • Florida Association for Women Lawyers (Treasurer, 1988 – 1989)
  • Fellow – American Bar Foundation
  • Fellow – Florida Bar Foundation
  • Florida Council of Bar Association Presidents
  • Florida Government Bar Association
  • Inns of Court
  • Judicial Nominating Commission, 2nd Judicial Circuit (1990 – 1994 and 2007 – 2011)
  • Judicial Nominating Commission, 1st District Court of Appeals (1994 – 1998)
  • National Conference of Bar Presidents (Member, Executive Council, 2005 – 2008)
  • Tallahassee Bar Association (President, 1990 – 1991; President-Elect, 1989 – 1990; Board of Directors, 1987 – 1989 and 1991 – 1992)
  • Tallahassee Women Lawyers Association (President, 1984 – 1985; Treasurer, 1982 – 1984; Board of Directors, 1985 – 1986)
  • The Florida Circuit-Civil Mediator Society
  • The Florida Academy of Professional Mediators, Inc.
  • The National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals
  • Recognized in Florida Trend's "Legal Elite" list in the area of Commercial Litigation (2004 – 2016)
  • Name to Florida Trend's Legal Elite Hall of Fame (2011 – 2017)  
  • Recognized in Best Lawyers in America® for Employment Law - Management (2011-2018); Commercial Litigation (2006-2013); Bet-the-Company Litigation (2010-2013); Litigation - Labor and Employment (2011) and Labor Law - Management (2011)
  • Recognized in Best Lawyers in America® as Tallahassee's Employment Law – Management "Lawyer of the Year" (2014)
  • Recognized in Florida Super Lawyers (2006 – 2018)
  • Named to "Top 25 Women Tampa Super Lawyers" list by Florida Super Lawyers (2007)
  • Named to "Top 50 Women Florida Super Lawyers" list by Florida Super Lawyers (2007, 2012, 2014)
  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Recipient – Tallahassee Women Lawyers Outstanding Achievement Award (2005)
  • Named to Continental's Who's Who Registry for National Business Leaders
  • Recognized by Marquis as a "Who's Who"
  • Recipient – Tallahassee Community College's Outstanding Women of Achievement Award (2004)
  • Recipient – Broward County Hispanic Bar Associations' Gracias Award for Commitment to Diversity (2004)
  • Recipient – Florida Association for Women Lawyers' Rosemary Barkett Outstanding Achievement Award (2003)
Civic Activities
  • Leadership Florida, Class XXIV (2005 – 2006)
  • Guardian Ad Litem Program
  • Legal Aid Foundation 
Speaking Engagements


  • Florida State University College of Law, J.D., 1982, cum laude
  • Florida State University, B.S., 1979 


  • Florida, 1982
  • U.S. District Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit, 1983
  • U.S. District Court, Middle, Northern and Southern Districts of Florida, 1983 

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