From Brooklyn to Biscayne Bay and on to Tallahassee: The Remarkable Story of Former Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Gerald Kogan
by Seth H. Bramson
Greek philosopher Socrates provided one of the earliest descriptions of the qualities of a good judge: "Four things belong to a judge: to hear courteously; to answer wisely; to consider soberly and to decide impartially." Justice Gerald Kogan was not only a good judge, he was a great judge. In From Brooklyn to Biscayne Bay and on to Tallahassee: The Remarkable Story of Former Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Gerald Kogan, Seth H. Bramson, who is America's single most published Florida history book author, tells the remarkable story about Justice Kogan's journey from Brooklyn to Miami, prosecutor to private practice, and circuit court judge to Supreme Court justice.
The biography begins with the story of Justice Kogan's family and the impact it had on his life. Due to rampant antisemitism in Odessa, Russia, his Jewish grandparents gave up their chosen profession and immigrated to the U.S. Justice Kogan's father was a self-made man. He worked his way through pharmacy school, opened a successful and lucrative pharmacy, and worked 12 to 13 hours a day, seven days a week. Similar to his father, Justice Kogan had a Herculean work ethic and succeeded at every stage of his life.
In academia, Justice Kogan was a champion debater in high school and college. At the University of Miami, where he went to undergraduate and law school, Justice Kogan served as president of the student senate, vice president of the student body, and was selected into UM's most prestigious honor society. As a state prosecutor, he worked on some of the most challenging and high profile cases, and won almost all his cases. He became head of the Homicide and Capital Crimes Division when he was only 29 years old. As...