The Florida Bar

News Releases


June 18, 2019
CONTACT: Francine Walker; [email protected]
The Florida Bar
TELEPHONE: 850-561-5666

TALLAHASSEE – Vero Beach attorney John M. Stewart will be sworn in as the Bar’s 71st president and Miami attorney Dori Foster-Morales becomes president-elect during The Florida Bar’s 2019 Annual Convention at the Boca Raton Resort & Club next week.

“unCONVENTIONal,” the theme of this year’s convention, promises a fresh focus on attendees’ convention experiences with 25 continuing legal education (CLE) seminars, meetings of many committees, sections and affiliate groups, and ample opportunities to network and socialize.

In addition to delivering a state of the Bar address, President Michelle Suskauer will lead a panel of prominent women lawyers and judges, including new Florida Supreme Court Justice Barbara Lagoa, from 1 to 3 p.m., on Wednesday, June 26: “How She Did It: unCONVENTIONal Paths to Leadership.”

Other convention highlights include:

Judicial Luncheon:  Set for Thursday, June 27, this luncheon features the State of the Judiciary address by Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles T. Canady and the introduction of Supreme Court Justices Lagoa, Robert J. Luck, and Carlos G. Muniz.

General Assembly: The centerpiece event Friday, June 28, features the installation of incoming Bar officers, including Stewart and Foster-Morales, and Board of Governors members.

50-Year Members Luncheon: The Friday event will honor 375 Florida Bar members for 50 years of service. Attorneys who have achieved 50 years in the practice, even if they spent part of their careers in other states, will also be recognized. John W. Frost II, of Bartow, a member of this year’s 50-year class and who served as president of The Florida Bar in 1996-1997, will be the featured speaker at the luncheon. Additional honorees include influential civil rights activist and long-time member of the Florida Legislature Arthenia L. Joyner of Tampa as well as Robert A. Butterworth of Fort Lauderdale, the 33rd Attorney General of Florida.

Presidential Showcase Seminars: The two highlighted seminars this year focus on a free press and the First Amendment, and the imperative to make sure innocent people are not convicted of crimes. “Fake News, the First Amendment and Defamation – The Power of the Pen” will be presented Thursday, June 27, and feature Miami Herald Managing Editor Rick Hirsch, with Washington Post Executive Editor Martin Baron introducing part of the program via Skype. “Justice Lost and Found: Gilbert King and Conviction Integrity in Florida” will be presented Friday, June 28, and will feature the author of “Devil in the Grove” and “Beneath a Ruthless Sun,” followed by a panel discussion with three state attorneys whose offices in Jacksonville, Orlando and Tampa have conviction integrity units.

Additionally, there is a Saturday CLE option, “Protecting Consumers,” a seminar that focuses on consumer protection issues with vulnerable populations in Florida – the elderly, veterans, and service members.

The Florida Bar Annual Convention also offers special events, including the “Bright Lights, Big City President’s Reception,” “Casino Night,” and a “Totally Tiki-rific Luau Party” for children.

The convention web page details the schedule of meetings and events, all CLE programs and registration and event ticket information.

To help keep track of all the happenings, attendees can download The Florida Bar Annual Convention mobile app, to:

  • Get up-to-date schedules.
  • Receive important notices.
  • Create a personal schedule.
  • View hotel and city maps.
  • Visit exhibitors and sponsors.
  • Use the hashtag #MyFloridaBar.

With more than 107,000 members, The Florida Bar is one of the largest unified bars in the nation. It is charged by the Florida Supreme Court with regulating the practice of law in the state as well as promoting the administration of justice.


Members of the news media interested in covering any of the convention events should refer to the guidelines posted here.

EDITORS: Please note The Florida Bar is not an association and "Association" is not part of our name. Proper reference is "The Florida Bar." Local bar organizations are properly termed "associations."