Named 2007 Advocate of the Year by the Guardian ad Litem program in Florida, Judge John Bowman has accumulated a long record of helping streamline the judicial system to benefit children. Adjudicating in the Juvenile Dependency Division of Broward County since his election in 2002, he has pushed for innovative technologies, including a judicial tracking system to provide a unified approach for families with multiple cases. Judge John Bowman also overhauled the adoption system, drastically reducing the number of children who remained in foster care once they were eligible for adoption. Additionally, he shortened the time between the termination of parental rights and legal adoption.
He found a solution to the juvenile “lockout” dilemma as well. This situation had left juveniles illegally incarcerated in secure detention beyond the mandated 24 hours. As a result of Judge Bowman’s research efforts and people skills in bringing agency representatives to negotiation, children are now able to leave secure detention more rapidly. Additionally, agencies save resources, families receive needed services, and the judicial system spends less time addressing needless detentions. Judge Bowman’s work in this area has had statewide implications. In addition to this work, he held hearings that led to stricter licensing requirements for residential treatment centers that house children.
At Florida Atlantic University, Judge Bowman excelled academically, receiving a Bachelor’s degree in Public Administration. He earned dean’s list honors and made the Moot Court Team at St. Thomas University, where he completed his J.D. A participant in the Stephen R. Booher American Inn of Court, he sits on the Board of Directors of One Community Partnership, which coordinates Broward County’s mental health programs. He is also on the Advisory Board of the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. Additionally active in the Broward County Bar Association, Judge John Bowman served as Judicial Liaison in 2009 and 2010. In 2014 he was elected President of the Stephen Booher American Inn of Court for 2015. Outside of his professional duties, he enjoys boating, experiencing nature, and exploring environmental issues.