Gary R. Cowart, Esq.
A native of South Florida, retired Judge Gary Cowart received his undergraduate Bachelor of Science Degree from Nova Southeastern University in 1978. He obtained his Juris Doctor Degree from Nova Law Center in 1982 and began his legal career in 1983 as a trial attorney with the Broward County Public Defender’s Office in Fort Lauderdale. While working at the Public Defender’s Office, he represented thousands of individuals charged with offenses ranging from driving under the influence to murder. He was subsequently promoted to the position of Chief Assistant Public Defender, where he shared in the supervision and management of approximately 95 attorneys, legal assistants, investigators and legal interns. He began teaching in Broward County at Broward Community College in 1992 where he taught Business Law and Civil Litigation, and currently is an adjunct instructor at Florida Atlantic University.
In 1997, Mr. Cowart was appointed as Broward County Judge by Governor Lawton Chiles. He quickly developed a reputation among lawyers as being fair and competent. He served with distinction as shown by the Broward County Bar Association’s Judicial Survey of Judges administered in various years. Retired Judge Cowart was consistently rated qualified to extremely qualified by over 90% of the responding attorneys in the areas of legal knowledge and judicial temperament. In his judicial career, retired Judge Cowart has presided over 300 jury trials and over 500 nonjury trials and has ruled upon thousands of motions.
LEADERSHIP, MEMBERSHIP & HONORS
His achievements and contributions in the South Florida community have been recognized throughout the years, in that, he has received numerous awards, including the Broward County Mental Health Association’s “EPIC Award”(Exceptional People Impacting the Community) and the “Medal of Merit Award” presented by the International Association of Lions Club. Throughout the years, Mr. Cowart has also been involved with various organizations, including the Boys’ and Girls’ Club of Broward County, Lester H. White Unit, the Broward County Commission on Substance Abuse and S.A.I.L.S, an organization that awarded academic college scholarships to qualified at risk high school students, desirous of continuing their education at the junior college level.
- Bachelor of Science Degree – Nova Southeastern University
- Juris Doctor Degree – Nova Law Center
ADMITTED TO PRACTICE
- State of Florida