Research Foundation Directors and Officers
Joseph W. Landers, Jr. (Jay)
Mr. Landers is a graduate of Stetson University, where he was president of the student body and named outstanding senior man, and Stetson College of Law, which he attended on the President's Award scholarship. Upon graduating from law school in 1970, Mr. Landers joined the staff of Florida Secretary of State Tom Adams, and the following year became an aide to Governor Reubin Askew. Mr. Landers was environmental adviser and chief cabinet aide to Governor Askew, who subsequently named Mr. Landers Executive Director of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund, the agency responsible for managing all state owned lands. The following year Mr. Landers was appointed Secretary of the newly created Florida Department of Environmental Regulation, the state counterpart to the federal EPA. Askew's successor, Governor Bob Graham appointed Mr. Landers Interim Executive Director of the Florida Department of Natural Resources
In 1979 Mr. Landers left government to begin a successful environmental and land use law practice. Mr. Landers was repeatedly selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America. In 1996, Mr. Landers left the practice of law to become founding chairman and CEO of USMed, a medical finance company. USMed subsequently merged with Unicorn Financial Services, which became ChaseHealthAdvance when it was sold to JPMorganChase in 2007. Mr. Landers retired as CEO of ChaseHealthAdvance in 2009 and currently manages investments.
Mr. Landers has been active in civic and chartable organizations, including serving on the board of Florida Audubon Society, the Florida Nature Conservancy, and the national advisory board of the Trust for Public Land. He has served as chairman of the Tallahassee Urban League, the Southern Scholarship Foundation, and the board of trustees of Stetson University. Mr. Landers is married to Pam Forrester, and they have two children, Elizabeth 19, and Wheeler 15.