David Lawrence Jr. recently returned to the University of Florida campus for an inspirational evening in celebration of our children and community. During the event, Lawrence discussed his new book “A Dedicated Life: Journalism, Justice and a Chance for Every Child” as well as his career in journalism and his dedication to education over the years.

We are thrilled to have shared this evening with our community, in which Lawrence, an advocate for both journalism and children, shared excellent insights into his own life and experiences. See his full talk here:

Lawrence retired in 1999 as the publisher of the Miami Herald to work in the area of early childhood development and readiness. He chairs The Children’s Movement of Florida, aimed at making children the state’s top priority for investment and supports the David Lawrence Jr. Endowed Chair in Early Childhood Studies here at the Anita Zucker Center.

Lawrence said that during his career at the Herald, he was asked by Florida Governor Lawton Chiles to serve on a governor’s commission on education. However, what was meant to be a two-year civic assignment turned into a wakeup call which prompted him to retire and dedicate the rest of his life to improving education and the lives of children.

“Every child ought to have the chance to fill his or her potential,” stated Lawrence.

With the right blend of nurturing support, education and love, we can truly change education for the better and improve our children’s lives to make a positive impact on the community. With David Lawrence Jr. as an example and advocate, we are certainly on the right track.

Many thanks to our presenting partners: UF College of Education, UF College of Journalism and Communications and Bob Graham Center for Public Service. All author proceeds from this event benefited the Children’s Movement of Florida.