Stetson University College Of Law Board Of Overseers Recognizes Revered Alumni

The Patch | The Patch

Feb 28, 2021

GULFPORT, FL — On Feb. 13, 2021, the Stetson University College of Law Board of Overseers unanimously passed resolutions to honor the service of Sammy Cacciatore, Rhea Law, Bernie McCabe and Bonnie Forman – all esteemed alumni with a legacy of helping elevate their alma mater and the legal field. The resolutions recognize their years of selfless devotion to both the College and the advancement of legal education.

Sammy Cacciatore

Sammy Cacciatore is a Double Hatter, earning a bachelor’s degree from Stetson University and his Juris Doctor in 1966. He began his career as an Assistant Public Defender and in 1967 joined the Law Office of James Nance, which would later be known as Nance & Cacciatore, where he continues to practice personal injury litigation.

In Jones v. Hoffman, Cacciatore pioneered efforts to establish comparative negligence as the standard in Florida. This ultimately resulted in the change to this standard throughout the country, transforming the way injured people are compensated.

He gives generously of his time and resources to many professional and nonprofit organizations, including: the International Academy of Trial Lawyers; Brevard County Bar Association; Vassar B. Carlton American Inn of Court; Florida Supreme Court’s Committee on Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases; Florida Justice Association; Florida Bar Board of Governors; Coastal Conservation Association; Several Judicial Nominating Commissions, Florida State Courts; Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church; Coastal Conservation Association; and the Back Country Fly Fishing Association.Subscribe

Despite his many interests and obligations, Cacciatore has always maintained time for his alma mater, being appointed to the Board of Trustees of Stetson University in 2000 and serving as a member of the Board of Overseers since 1995.

Rhea Law

Law is a 1979 Stetson Law alumna who practiced in the areas of higher education, economic development, government, and land use law. During her career, she served as chief executive officer and chair of the board of Fowler White Boggs, PA and as chair of the Florida Offices of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney, PC.

Her professional and nonprofit organizations are many and varied, including: the American Bar Association; American Bar Foundation; Enterprise Florida, Inc.; Leadership Council on Legal Diversity; Tampa Bay Technology Forum; Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce; Leadership Tampa; Lions Eye Institute for Transplant & Research; Tampa Bay Defense Alliance; Tampa Bay Partnership; Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida Multicultural Advisory Council; Health Professions Conferencing Corporation; H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute National Board of Advisors; MacDill Air Force Base Support Council; Tampa Bay Metro; Tampa Bay Partnership; Tampa Electric; Peoples Gas Board of Directors; Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation; The Florida Council of 100; United States Law Firm Group; University of South Florida Board of Trustees; and University of South Florida Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation.

Law was appointed to the Board of Trustees of Stetson University in 2019 and has served two terms as a member of the Board of Overseers, beginning in 2007 and then again beginning in 2013.

Bernie McCabe

McCabe was a Double Hatter, earning his bachelor’s in 1969 and Juris Doctor in 1972. He began his career as the Assistant State Attorney in the Sixth Judicial Circuit in Florida and went on to serve as the Division Director, Executive Assistant State Attorney, and Chief Assistant State Attorney before being elected as State Attorney for Pinellas and Pasco counties in 1992. He was continually reelected to the position and worked until his passing in 2020.

McCabe dedicated his life and career to many professional and nonprofit organizations aimed at protecting the rights of others, including: the Florida Prosecuting Attorneys Association; National District Attorneys Association; Pinellas County Juvenile Welfare Board; Pinellas County Substance Abuse Advisory Board; Suncoast Family YMCA; Pasco and Pinellas Public Safety Coordinating Councils; Florida Violent Crime and Drug Control Council; Pinellas County Health and Human Services Coordinating Council; Tampa Bay Area Chiefs of Police Association; and Pinellas Police Standards Council.

He also was a steadfast presence at Stetson Law, being appointed to the Board of Overseers in 1994, supervising the Stetson Prosecution Clinic for 28 years, teaching young law students as an Adjunct Professor, serving as judge for various mock trial competitions at the law school, and hiring and mentoring many Stetson Law alumni.

Bonnie Forman

Foreman is a 1967 graduate of Stetson University who shared her love of learning by teaching elementary school in Pinellas County, Fla., for 34 years. Her late husband, Edward D. Foreman, was a 1967 graduate of Stetson University and a 1971 graduate of Stetson University College of Law. She established the Edward D. Foreman Most Distinguished Student Award in 2005 in his memory. The award is given each spring to the “best all-around student” who has demonstrated a passion for the legal profession and commitment to community service.

Foreman also established the Edward D. Foreman Scholarship and the Edward and Bonnie Foreman Biodiversity Lecture Series at Stetson Law. The lecture series features world renowned experts in the areas of environmental law and environmental science.

She has given generously of her time and resources and been associated with many nonprofit organizations, including: the SPCA Tampa Bay; Pace Center for Girls; Pinellas Education Foundation; and Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. Foreman was also appointed to the Board of Trustees of Stetson University and to the Board of Overseers of Stetson University College of Law in 2007.

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