David M. Burkoff
Age as of Jan. 1: 39
Savannah neighborhood: Ardsley Park
Q: What are your top three business growth accomplishments?
A: I have helped numerous small- and medium-sized businesses resolve their disputes, enabling them to focus on what’s most important — growing their businesses.
A: Likewise, I have helped many larger, more established businesses resolve disputes and, as a result, stay focused on growing their businesses and developing our local economy.
A: I have developed a practice representing schools of higher education sued by former students challenging their dismissals and representing clients faced with disputes related to trusts or estates or other fiduciary matters.
Q: What are your top three business awards/accolades?
A: Rated “AV — Preeminent” by Martindale Hubbell, a well-known peer review rating service for lawyers
A: Voted a “Super Lawyers” Rising Star each year since moving to Savannah in 2012
A: My biggest, most important business success is that I have obtained numerous judgments and dismissals for clients throughout our region.
Q: What are your top three current philanthropic leadership roles:
A: I serve on the board of directors and executive committee of the West Broad Street YMCA.
A: I serve on the advisory board of the Savannah Sports Council.
A: I serve on the Alumni Representative Committee of Columbia University in New York, and I interview Savannah area high school students who have applied to Columbia.
Q: How will you do business differently in the coming year or decade?
A: I anticipate more meetings, depositions and court proceedings by video, increased electronic filing of court documents, and generally less reliance on paper.
Q: What technological or cultural advances are you looking forward to in the coming year or decade?
A: I look forward to the continuing development of the Starland District, as well as other Savannah neighborhoods in need of revitalization.
Q: What qualities or assets will distinguish Savannah and preserve/advance our local economy?
A: Savannah will continue to be distinguished by its variety: We live in a spectacularly beautiful town that’s full of history, is close to the beach, has a vibrant arts community and is home to countless individuals who care deeply about its progress and the need to grow our economy while maintaining the character and charm that continues to draw tourists and new residents.
Q: What economic drivers and business sectors promise the most growth in the next year or decade and why?
A: The incentives SEDA has announced to grow the local base of film crew and attract more film productions have exciting growth potential. The port and its expansion should continue to help grow all of the various industries that support and/or use it.
I’m also encouraged by the growth and success in Savannah’s entrepreneurship and innovation communities. Public, private, and joint ventures are raising Savannah’s profile as a tech friendly city, and I think that could become an economic driver for the region.
Q: What college degrees will be the most in-demand in the Savannah area and why?
A: Degrees related to logistics and technology. At the graduate level, with the arrival of Savannah Law School, we may see more newly minted lawyers in Savannah than ever before.
Q: What advice do you have for other Savannah leaders in the coming year or decade?
A: You can make your reputation in a day. There aren’t many degrees of separation between people in our community. Be good to your neighbors and those you do business with, and you will be successful.
Q: What innovation of yours do you hope will be remembered by future generations?
A: World peace.