Howard Finkelstein, Broward Public Defender speaks about justice

Rep. Joe Gibbons; Dr. Wilbert “Tee” Holloway, AT&T / M-DCPS Board; Russel Lazega, Law Office of
Russel Lazega; North Miami Beach Mayor George Vallejo
Photography by Andrew Goldstein

“Equality and justice for all” was the focus of the Aventura Marketing Council’s August Chairman’s Roundtable luncheon featuring Howard Finkelstein, Broward’s Public Defender and renowned legal analyst for Channel 7 News featuring his famous Help Me Howard segments.

The meeting was hosted by attorney Russel Lazega of Florida Insurance Advocates – a 15- attorney, statewide insurance litigation boutique representing hundreds of medical providers and consumers with issues involving insurance companies. Lazega and his team of insurance industry specialists work on a contingency basis and in most instances, fees are recovered from insurance companies.

Both Lazega and Finkelstein serve on the Board of Directors of the Holocaust Documentation and Education Center, a nondenominational organization founded 32 years ago. Currently the Center Board is spearheading initiatives to build the first South Florida bilingual English and Spanish Holocaust Museum, so that all our children will learn how hatred, prejudice and bigotry can lead to genocide when there is silence.

Bob Hollander of Brown & Brown Insurance, standing in for AMC Chair Cliff Schulman of Weiss, Serota, Helfman, helped welcome business and community leaders to Christine Lee’s at Gulfstream Park, where Finkelstein emphasized, “This incredible country has come a long way from the days it shouted to the world in the Declaration of Independence ‘All men are created equal.’ Today, we stand closer to those promises being fulfilled and delivered to all people than in any other time.

“Due to current economic conditions, the promise of the right to counsel and equal justice is seriously at risk of disappearing. As we have to tighten our belts, we must ask ourselves, ‘Is justice something we are willing to do on the cheap – or does justice have an overarching importance because it defines who we are as a people? If there isn’t equal and fair justice than the promise of America is hollow.

“As we get closer to this thing called ‘justice’ we can all be proud to stand anywhere in the world and say, ‘I’m an American and I believe that all of God’s children are equal; and justice is not for sale.’ Those who toil in law enforcement and the justice system deserve admiration and respect. Never doubt that we have so much to be proud of – but never doubt that the job isn’t even close to being done.”

Humbly discussing his TV fame, Finkelstein explained, “Help Me Howard is really an outgrowth of being a Public Defender and an American. I get to help people and not charge then anything – does it get any cooler than that?”

To contact attorney Russel Lazega of Florida Insurance Advocates, phone: 754- 263-4252 or visit www.lazegalaw.com.

For more information about the Holocaust Education and Documentation Center, phone: 954-929- 5690 or visit www.hdec.org.

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