Sources: Bob Butterworth Seeks Appointment




Former Attorney General Bob Butterworth wants back in public life more than a decade after he left.

Butterworth is seeking an appointment to the new Charter Review Commission, which will recommend changes to Broward government, according to county commission office sources.

A lifelong resident of Hollywood, Butterworth is 72.

He is a legend among Broward Democrats.  He was first appointed a judge in 1974 by Gov. Reubin Askew.  He was also Broward’s sheriff and mayor of Sunrise.  He was elected Florida Attorney General in 1986 and served until 2002.

“He is making calls,” a source inside the commission office said. “He is lobbying to be the 19th member (of charter review).”

Under the rules, each of the nine commissioners makes two appointments from their districts. Then the entire commission appoints the 19th member who resides any place in the county.

Applications are due May 15, next Friday. It is assumed by sources that Butterworth won’t apply unless he is assured an appointment.

The Charter Commission will meet from June until 2018. After examining current Broward County government, commissioners will recommend future changes to make the structure more suitable for the new decade. Voters in the 2018 General Election must approve the group’s proposals before taking effect.

Sources speculate that Butterworth wants to be on the commission to advocate for a strong mayor.

A county manager hired by the commission currently runs Broward. Elements in the downtown Fort Lauderdale business community want the charter commission to place a referendum on the ballot which would have the county run in the future by a strong mayor.

Butterworth could not be reached for comment.



Then and Now: 

Ervin, Faircloth, Shevin and Butterworth

Bob Butterworth (on right) poses in 1988 with former Attorney Generals (from left) — Richard Ervin (1949-1964), Earl Faircloth (1965-1971) and Robert Shevin (1971-1979) 

State Rep. Jack Tobin chats with Bob Butterworth, 1988

Bob Butterworth (right) chats with state Rep. Jack Tobin, D-Margate, 1988

Sunshine Sunday Butterworth

Bob Butterworth: A recent picture

16 Responses to “Sources: Bob Butterworth Seeks Appointment”

  1. Appointment says:

    I read this headline and believe that the article is a misrepresentation.

    I figured he was looking for an appointment at a geriatric specialist.

    Things are so bad for Democrats in Broward County and the State of Florida that they can’t bring anyone to any position that isn’t a retread, a has-been, or a never were.

    It’s one thing to have institutional knowledge, but good lord this is ridiculous.

  2. dean ledbetter says:

    Vamenos Roberto!

  3. count l f chodkiewicz chudzikiewicz says:

    A former state attorney anywhere would add gravitas to a charter review committee anywhere. Considering the “controversial” nature of current and past county commission appointments this should be a no brainer for the county commission members and the interest of the counties residents – US!

  4. Jack Cory says:

    The General is a Statesmen having served on the First Charter Comm.

    The photo with Rep. Tobin is a good one!

    Thank you Buddy for all you do.


    Jack Cory was a political consultant and lobbyist in Broward County for many years before relocating to Tallahassee. He is now one of the veteran lobbyists in the state Capital.

    And way back in an era when I still had hair, I worked for Cory in Broward.

  5. Susan Tramer says:

    Please correct me; wasn’t he involved in original 1975 Charter. I would love to follow story.


    I will correct you. The original charter commission which established the county’s current form of government in 1975 is listed below:

    Frederick Lippman

    George L. Caldwell
    Vice Chairman

    Kenneth C. Jenne II
    Executive Director

    Hugh A. Anderson, James Stuart Campbell
    Hamilton C. Forman, Otis B. Geiger
    David E. Graham
    Stewart R. Kester, Basil M. LaVergne, Loretta Liljestrand
    Richard Marant, John H. McGinn, Leonard Robbins
    E. Clay Shaw, Dan Sullivan

  6. Susan Tramer says:

    I’m a fan.

  7. Floridan says:

    I can’t think of anyone better qualified to sit on the CRC than Bob Butterworth.

  8. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:


    A strong mayor form of government is precisely what Broward County needs together with a county commission with legislative powers to check and balance the authority given to an elected executive. Why?

    This will reduce taxes and improve our tourism and business profile. Put one person who runs for office in charge of proposing a budget and that’s what you’ll tend to get. It will also improve general governance over a county that’s nearly 2 million people large.

    Broward has grown to become one of America’s most populated counties, in the top 20. We need to evolve beyond the same governing structures we had when Broward had more cows than people. Quite simply, we’ve outgrown our form of government and we need to reform it. The system did great work for us but it strains too much to serve us well today.

    We can’t continue self-govern a county this large using the same structure a small homeowner association uses. One size does not fit all. It’s foolish to try.

    Commission/manger forms of government work well when you’re dealing with a small operation. But when dealing with multi-billions of dollars and responsibilities as far ranging as human services to the environment, to ports and airports, etc., you need an empowered and elected CEO working together with professional staff, checked by an empowered elected legislature, to get the job done right. This is the best model for self-governance of large American jurisdictions and it works.

    Elected Florida Mayors that do not vote with their commissions are also free under the state laws to meet individually with commissioners and figure out how best to solve problems. That ability to communicate ethically and directly is key to success, and with an Inspector General in place, you no longer have to worry about unchecked corruption.

    The resulting county commission in that set-up becomes free do the essential job of a mini-legislature — ensuring oversight that the departments are doing what the people need of them. They can also focus more on public hearings, which rarely occur now in a large government sense, and more intently focus on the budget process.

    When we get our commission out of executive and contract approval business, when we remove executive authority from the county commission, 99% of all the ethics concerns we’ve had are eliminated. We end up with a more evolved structure, we end up with a government as grown up as we’ve become, and we join the other evolved large governments in the United States.

    It’s the smarter way to do business, more ethical, it will save and make more money in the long run and it will get the job done better for residents and businesses.

    It’s evolution. Now, there are lots of ways to get there and many models out there to choose from. Let’s do a best practice review, find the strong mayor model that works best for us and implement it.

    Let’s get out of the way of Broward’s progress. Let’s bring more jobs and economic opportunity, better self-governance and progress to our community. It’s time to move forward, just like Dade and others have successfully done. We are being left behind. Let’s stop wishing for better and get there already.



    PS — I was a member of the 2000 Broward Charter Review Commission. I made this same speech 15 years ago as a member of that committee. We fell just short of putting a strong mayor on the ballot. But we did convert the former county commission chair to the form of Mayor the county has today. It’s been 15 years and nothing fell apart. It was a step in the right direction then. Let’s take the next step.

  9. City Activist Robert Walsh says:

    I think this is great news that Bob butterworth wants in. So should Judy Stern be on this panel. So should some one from the OIG Off.So should some one from the State Att>off, maybe you Catherine Maus, since you end up prosecuting half of them(elected off.) Also I think its unreasonable that the applicant s that the County Comm’ appoint have to be from their district is stupid. Maybe Lois Wexler or Chip Lamarca etc want someone outsid e their district. They should not be compromised. I mean we only do this what once in 10/15 yrs. I hope a lot more people like Bob Butterworth want in. This is our gov’t people, not a select few….More the merrier.(and I’m not talkin CHristmas here…

  10. Wayne Arnold says:

    If Bob Butterworth feels he can make a contribution of time and knowledge toward the Broward Charter Review Board we as citizens of this county will be damn lucky to have his wealth of energy, knowledge, and experience. His public life and service to our county and State of Florida have been nothing short of selfless. The sad part in the history of General Bob Butterworth is that he never sought the Governorship. He would have been a great Governor.

  11. norm price says:

    Bob is a class act and a professional. I had the pleasure when I met him the first time as at that time I was a police officer in Pembroke Park and had made a traffic stop and while walking to the person I stopped I saw a vehicle park behind me and became my back up and it was Bob Butterworth. I got to become friends with him and as stated he is a very professional person and I hope he does get appointed

  12. John Lomelo says:

    Bob Butterworth is too busy with trying out his new rocking chair and snuggly warmer to be on the charter commission. They need people who reflect the future, not the ancient past.

  13. Fake Charter Review Meeting says:

    Judy Stern brings a Motion to Amend the Charter to exclude anyone with the last name starting with I from serving as Sheriff of Broward County…

  14. Butter-worth more than most says:

    What is important is people like Vicente Thrower are not put on Charter Review.

    Unbelievable that Marty Kiar had this guy on his host committee. Marty is as straight up and honest as they come. Sadly, Marty is too nice for his own good and needs to stay away from Political Pimps like Thrower.

  15. No Butterworth says:

    What does Butterworth do for a living these days? He is a LOBBYIST!!

    Why does he want to be on Charter Review? To create a County Mayor job … that he wants to run for himself to revive his long dead political career.

    Look, we all appreciate Butterworth’s past public service, we say thanks to him … but he is just that: our past, not our future.

  16. Just beachy says:

    MY Vote GOES TO BOB, and Loretta Liljestrand, again. SHE is A JEWEL, long served Browards’ children.