It is a warm fall morning in Birmingham, and Donald Watkins is in town for a meeting. The hotel-like condition of his office in the back of a bank he founded suggests that this a rare occurrence. The trash can is empty, the desk is spotless and the most recent book on the shelf is an unread copy of Michael Lewis’s 2003 opus “Moneyball.”

Watkins is retired from the law, a point he repeats several times with obvious pleasure. Last year he left Alabama for Miami. Florida has beaches, which he likes, and no state income tax, which he likes even more.

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