Melissa M. Gross-Arnold Esq., B.C.S.
Ms. Gross-Arnold is Board Certified by the Florida Bar as an expert in education as well as city, county and local government law. She specializes in public and private education law, governmental law and transactional due diligence.
Ms. Gross-Arnold is well-versed in laws related to private and public schools, including charter schools, as well as the Government in the Sunshine and Public Records Laws applicable to these schools. She has represented both school districts and charter schools and has also served as a mediator on behalf of the Florida Department of Education. She has also made numerous appearances before the Florida Charter School Appeal Commission and Florida State Board of Education. She represents charter schools across Florida, and as co-counsel to charter schools in Georgia, on a wide range of issues, including but not limited to, charter applications and appeals, site acquisition/leasing and permitting, charter contract negotiations, funding, operations and compliance and termination appeals. Her private school experience has included site acquisition/leasing, funding and scholarship issues. Ms. Gross-Arnold has represented universities with respect to campus master planning and challenges to same. She has also handled employment issues for both public and private schools.
With respect to governmental law, Ms. Gross-Arnold represents clients seeking land use and other approvals from local and state governments. She has also represented local governments and served as counsel to value adjustment boards.
Ms. Gross-Arnold also represents clients in transactional due diligence, easement and access matters. Her transactional due diligence experience has included multiple multi-million dollar transactions throughout the State of Florida. Ms. Gross-Arnold's easement experience includes access easements as well as negotiation of a number of conservation easements between private landowners and conservation organizations.
In 2009, Ms. Gross-Arnold was selected as one of the Top Women Under 40 in Commercial Real Estate and in 2010, was names as one of the Florida Rising Stars in Florida Super Lawyer Magazine. Ms. Gross-Arnold served as President on the Board of Commercial Real Estate Women-Jacksonville Chapter, as President and General Counsel to the North Florida Land Trust. Additionally, she is a member of the Clay County Economic Development Advisory Committee. She also serves as the Secretary of the Education Community for the Martin J. Gottlieb Day School. Ms. Gross-Arnold is a member of the Alliance of Public Charter School Attorneys and is a preferred vendor for the Florida Consortium of Public Charters Schools.
Areas of Practice
- Education Law
- Employment Law -- Employer
- Government Agencies & Programs
- Government Contracts
- Transactional Due Diligence
- Administrative Law
Certified Legal Specialties
- Education, City, County & Local Government Law, Florida Bar
- U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit
- U.S. District Court Middle District of Florida
- University of Florida College of Law, Gainesville, Florida
- J.D. - 1999
- Honors: With High Honors
- Honors: Environmental and Land Use Law Certificate
- Honors: Order of the Coif
- Honors: Member of the Florida Law Review
- University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida
- B.S. - 1992
- Major: Business Administration
Professional Associations and Memberships
- Alliance of Public Charter School Attorneys
- Clay County Chamber of Commerce, Member and appointee to Economic Development Advisory Board, 2009 - 2012
- Commercial Real Estate Women-Jacksonville Chapter
- Georgia Charter School Association
- Florida Bar Association-Environmental and Land Use Law, Administrative Law and City, County and Local Government Law Sections
- Jacksonville Bar Association, Member
- Jacksonville Community Council, Inc., Fundraising Committee, 2004 - 2006
- Jacksonville Community Council, Inc., Management Team, , 2005
- Jacksonville Community Council, Inc., Business Involvement in Education Study, 2002
- Martin J. Gottlieb Day School, Education Community , Secretary
- North Florida Land Trust, Former President and General Counsel