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Tampa Bay’s 10 Hero Central

Tampa trial attorney Steve Yerrid has won upwards of 200 $1 million-plus jury verdicts and settlements over his career, including the nation’s largest jury verdict awards in two of the past several years.

Yerrid was a member of the “dream team” of a dozen of Florida’s finest trial lawyers who in the late 90s joined to battle Big Tobacco on behalf of the citizens who had been injured by that deadly product. Over several years of grueling work, he and the team did what would have been beyond the capacity of the state to accomplish. In the end, Big Tobacco was forced to repay taxpayers $11 billion.

But those triumphs pale in comparison to the relentless battle he has waged against an implacable foe: cancer.

In 1996, Yerrid helped launch a celebrity fishing tournament that over the years has raised more than $1 million to help fight pediatric cancer. The fishing tournament is just one of the annual events that the Yerrid Foundation organizes to raise awareness about the disease.

Every year, the Yerrid Foundation makes a wealth of contributions to local and national causes. Yerrid, 60, has partnered with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays to select kids fighting fatal illnesses as batboys and batgirls at baseball games. He has sponsored fundraising events for dozens of organizations local and national, including Ronald McDonald House, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Pediatric Cancer Foundation and All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg.

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