Jamaican-American Lawyer is First Black Female President of Broward County Bar Association

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Photo: Weiss Serota Helfman Cole & Berman

A Jamaican-American lawyer has become the first Black woman to be elected President of the Broward County Bar Association (BCBA) in Florida.

Alison Smith, an attorney at Weiss Serota Helfman Cole & Berman, was sworn in as Broward County Bar Association President-elect on July 2. She will officially take on the role in 2022.

She will be the first woman of color to serve as the organization’s president in its nearly 100-year history.

Smith was born in New York but at one-month-old was taken by her parents, Fay and Donald Smith, an attorney who practiced in Black River, St Elizabeth, to Jamaica, where she grew up with her sisters, Meisha Smith-Coulter, also a lawyer and Dr Jessica Smith, a doctor.

She attended Nova Southeastern University in Florida, where she was valedictorian of her class, and graduated magna cum laude from the Shepard Broad College of Law at the university. Before law school, she earned a BSc in psychology with a minor in legal studies.

Speaking on her appointment, Smith said she was “excited” about her new role and considers it a “privilege and an honor” to represent the BCBA. She said she is taking the position as president with “utmost seriousness” and is “humbled” about the opportunity to lead the organization.

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