Attorney Elizabeth Schwartz says, “Sometimes, when I come out to friends who knew me way back when, their reaction is ‘We always knew you were a lesbian, but we never dreamed you’d become a lawyer!’”

The double L-worded Schwartz, who is from Miami Beach and grew up in Hollywood, went to college thinking she would become a journalist, but a passion for activism and advocacy, and an epiphany during a jazz concert in New Orleans, showed her that becoming a lawyer would mean she could fuse the social work she loved with making a living.

In private practice for sixteen years, her efforts and achievements on behalf of the LGBT community of south Florida and her expertise in the areas of family law, surrogacy, estate planning, probate, adoption, insemination and marriage dissolution, have brought her numerous awards and honors. Schwartz is also a certified family mediator who treats the law as a therapeutic profession. Currently Schwartz is representing six couples who are suing the State of Florida to overturn its ban on gay marriage.

She is a founding member of the Aqua Foundation for Women, raising funds by and for south Florida’s lesbian community.

She may not have become the journalist she once envisioned, but she chose to live with one, Lydia Martin, who has been her partner for twelve years. They live in downtown Miami.

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