Chip Merlin appointed to Florida Film & Entertainment Advisory Council

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President of the Florida State Senate Don Gaetz announced the appointment of William F. “Chip” Merlin as a Senate Representative on the Florida Film and Entertainment Advisory Council. His term of office will begin immediately and last through August 1, 2015. 

“Florida has so many unique and varied settings and cultures,” said Chip Merlin. “From white beaches to swampland to urban settings, from the charm of the old-time fishing villages to the major metropolian centers, Florida has nearly every visual imaginable except mountains. I am looking forward to serving the citizens of Florida and helping promote everything our State has to offer the entertainment industry–especially one-stop-shopping all year round.” 

Formed in 1999, the Film and Entertainment Advisory Council serves as an advisory body to the Department of Economic Opportunity and to the Florida Office of Film and Entertainment, and provides these offices with insight and expertise related to developing, marketing, promoting, and providing service to Florida’s entertainment industry. The Council consists of 17 members appointed by the Governor, President of the Senate, and Speaker of the House. Additionally, a representative of Workforce Florida Inc., a representative of the Florida Tourism Industry (Visit Florida), and a the Florida Film Commissioner (Enterprise Florida) serve as non-voting members. 

Chip Merlin has both his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Florida. He became a member of the Florida Bar in 1983.  Since 1985, he has dedicated his career to seeking justice for insurance policyholders in claim presentation and disputes with their insurance companies. Chip is the president of Merlin Law Group, which has offices throughout the country. 

Also, Chip frequently provides comment and insight into current legal issues on the stage of the national media, and is a regular guest on Fox News, ABC News, CNN, and MSNBC. He is routinely a featured speaker on insurance law at some of the nation’s most prestigious conferences and seminars such as the American Bar Association, the American Association for Justice, and the Florida Justice Association. He is also a regular presenter for organizations such as the National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (NAPIA), the Florida Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (FAPIA), the Community Associations Institute, and the Windstorm Insurance Network. Additionally, Chip is the main contributor to discussion on the daily blog, propertyinsurancecoveragelaw.com, and author of the soon to be released book, Wiped Out!, Flooded Out, Burned Up or Blown Away. 

As the Policyholder’s Advocate, Merlin Law Group has been pursuing the rights of residential, commercial and condominium property owners since 1985. Founded in Tampa, FL, the firm has expanded to eight additional locations with offices in West Palm Beach and Coral Gables, Florida; Houston, Texas; Denver, Colorado; Phoenix, Arizona; Los Angeles, California; New York, New York; and Red Bank, New Jersey. The firm focuses solely on representing commercial, governmental, residential and private policyholders in disputes regarding insurance claims. 

“Florida is one of the top destinations for film, television and commercial production. So many talented artists, skilled tradesman and world class media and production facilities are headquartered right here in the State,” says Chip. “I feel very invested in Florida, and believe it’s a great place to live and work. As an Advisory Council member, I am anxious to help get out the message that Florida offers extraordinary opportunities.”

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.