Just days after retiring from the bench, Judge Lawrence A. Schwartz has been appointed to serve on the Miami-Dade Commission on Ethics and Public Trust.
Judge Schwartz was appointed by Chief Circuit Court Judge Joel Brown to succeed a fellow retired jurist, Judge Seymour Gelber, who did not seek reappointment at the end of his most recent four-year term on the Ethics Commission.
Judge Schwartz sat on the Circuit Court since his appointment by then-Governor Lawton Chiles in 1997 through his retirement Dec. 31, 2012. The Northeast Miami-Dade resident won election to County Court in 1991 and served in all divisions until his elevation.
The law, however, was not his first career. Schwartz taught sixth grade for five years at Lake Stevens Elementary in Carol City. After earning his Juris Doctorate from the University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law, Schwartz was a deputy district attorney in Sacramento, CA, for a dozen years. The Miami Beach native returned home in 1987 to work as an assistant state attorney in the 11th Judicial Circuit prosecuting economic crimes.
“I hope to provide impartial, clear thinking and legal input when matters are brought before the commission,” Schwartz said of his appointment.
The husband of 40 years to Miami-Dade County Court Judge Caryn Canner Schwartz, father of two and grandfather of one, will be sworn in at the Ethics Commission’s next meeting at 2 p.m. on Jan. 24, in Suite 820 of the Miami-Dade Courthouse, 19 W. Flagler St.
Judge Gelber, who has served as an Ethics Commissioner since 2005, also will be honored at that meeting.
The Ethics Commission was created in 1996 as an independent agency with advisory and quasi-judicial powers. It is composed of five members, serving staggered terms of four years each. Through a program of education, outreach and enforcement, the commission seeks to empower the community and bolster public trust.