Frederick R. Nance
Appointed 2005 by the Bank Trustees Committee
Fred Nance serves as the regional managing partner of Squire Sanders & Dempsey, where he heads the firm’s sports and entertainment practice, and serves as general counsel to the Cleveland Browns. His legal practice has included numerous jury trials, project development through public-private partnerships, and contract negotiations. Much of his practice in recent years has included high-stakes negotiations involving community interests, and he participates often in alternative dispute resolution proceedings. An array of business and legal groups and publications has recognized him as one of the nation’s top lawyers. He serves on many boards, including the Cleveland Clinic, the Greater Cleveland Partnership, and RPM International.
In the 26 years that have passed since he began his career, Fred Nance has been at or near the center of almost every major development in Cleveland’s Herculean drive to transform itself into one of America’s most livable 21st-century cities.
But Cleveland native son Nance never intended to become a local power broker. In fact, when he first came home from the University of Michigan Law School in 1978, his goal was simple: “I wanted to get a job as an attorney with a big firm,” he says. Armed with this reasonable ambition, Nance signed up with the decidedly large firm Squire, Sanders & Dempsey, in its Cleveland office. Twenty-six years later, he is still there.
But this isn’t a story about a young man who got lost in a too-big firm, toiling away anonymously while waiting for his gold watch. The young Fred Nance may not have planned to become a major player in the city he loved, but that is exactly what happened.