On January 31, 2024, Shutts & Bowen lost a beloved member of its family, Steven K. Barber.

Steve, who worked in Shutts’ Tampa office, was an invaluable member of the firm and a highly respected authority on ERISA, employee benefits, and executive compensation law. He is remembered for his keen intellect, humility, and kindness. Always the consummate gentleman, Steve took the time to explain the complexities of his practice area to his fellow lawyers, the firm’s Pension Committee, and even opposing counsel (but always with his trademark smile). A gifted and accomplished attorney, Steve was known as a leading lawyer in his field, recently authoring an article for the Chambers & Partners US Regional Employment 2023 Global Practice Guide.

Steve has been regularly named among the Best Lawyers in America® in employee benefits law and was consistently recognized by Chambers USA. He was an accomplished author with many published documents and was often a featured presenter at conferences and seminars. He was an active member of the Tax Section of The Florida Bar, as well as the Tampa Bay Pension Council (where he served as co-chair).

Steve was born in LaGrange, Georgia, growing up in Atlanta. He received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of South Carolina in 1975 and a Juris Doctor of Law from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 1979. He joined Shutts in 2006 and was a treasured member of the firm for 18 years. Some of his relationships with longtime members of the firm span more than 40 years, an emblematic example of both his steadfast character and his professional excellence.

Steve is survived by his devoted wife, Laura Miller Barber; his brother, John Barber (Isabel), of Spartanburg and Isle of Palms, South Carolina; his nephews, Steven Barber (Katie); Stuart Barber (Courtney); and John Barber Jovaneli (Matthew), all of Charleston, South Carolina; and their respective children. He is also survived by his mother-in-law, Sharlene Miller Loudermilk, of Tampa; and his sister-in-law, Janna Miller Bartlett (Richard), of Brooksville, Florida. He was a devoted partner and husband for 25 years, sharing his enthusiasm for college football, volunteerism, gardening, and 5k races with his best friend, Laura.

Steve will be remembered as a remarkable man and will be greatly missed by his colleagues and friends at Shutts. Although his passing is a great loss, we remember to live our days with gratitude, just as he did.

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Shutts & Bowen, established in 1910, is a full-service business law firm with approximately 270 lawyers located in eight offices across Florida.

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