Eugene K. Pettis, a co-founder of Haliczer Pettis & Schwamm, focuses his practice in the areas of medical malpractice, personal injury, commercial litigation and employment law. Mr. Pettis attended the University of Florida in Gainesville, FL, where he received a bachelor's degree in political science in 1982 and graduated from the University of Florida's Levin College of Law in 1985. He co-founded Haliczer Pettis and Schwamm in 1996.
Mr. Pettis became the President of The Florida Bar in June 2013, being the first African-American in the Bar’s history to serve in this position and leading the country’s second-largest bar at a time when its membership exceeded 96,000 lawyers.
This position was a natural next step for Mr. Pettis, who was elected by his peers in 2005 to The Florida Bar's Board of Governors and currently serves on its Executive Committee and has chaired the Judicial Independence committee for the past three years. Just six years after graduating law school, he was appointed by Governor Lawton Chiles as the first African-American on the South Florida Water Management District's governing board (1991-99), where he eventually served as vice-chairman. Mr. Pettis supports higher education, serving on the University of Florida Foundation's board of directors for eight years and currently on the board of trustees at the University of Florida's Levin College of Law.
Mr. Pettis has earned Martindale-Hubbell's top "AV" rating for his high professional and ethical standards. Throughout his career, he has earned numerous legal awards and accolades, including ongoing selection by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America in areas of medical malpractice and personal injury litigation, Florida Super Lawyers, the South Florida Legal Guide "Top Lawyers" list and Florida Trend's "Legal Elite". In 2013, Mr. Pettis was recognized by the Best Lawyers in America as the Lawyer of the Year for Employment Law in his area.
He was a 2007 inductee to the exclusive invitation only American College of Trial Lawyers and elected by his peers into the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA). In January, 2013, he was recognized by his ABOTA Chapter as The Trial Lawyer of the Year in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. In recognition of his commitment to community service, Mr. Pettis was recognized in 2012 by the Urban League of Broward County with the Margaret Roach Humanitarian Award. Mr. Pettis received the South Florida Business Journal’s 2014 Ultimate CEO Award which recognizes Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach County’s top executive for their expertise, leadership and community involvement.
Mr. Pettis is admitted to The Florida Bar (1985). He is admitted to practice in all District Courts in Florida, including Southern District, Middle District and Northern District.