Lawrence S. Schwartz, the Founding Member of the Firm, is considered one of New Jersey’s leading experts in education and labor law. He guides the Firm in providing counsel to school boards throughout the state in both employment and labor matters, as well as commercial and corporate clients. Noted for his work on education-related matters, Larry also advises clients on corporate and commercial concerns, including civil trials.
Larry has served on state and national education task forces, has presented testimony before the New Jersey State Legislature and the State Board of Education on topics such as teacher tenure, public employees’ right to strike, business efficiencies, and has lectured at state and national conferences on countless occasions. He is a foremost authority on labor and employment matters, with a particular proclivity for labor negotiations. Larry is widely sought out for his negotiation strategy skills and legal counsel.
As general counsel to hundreds of school boards during his storied career, Larry has appeared before the Office of Administrative Law (“OAL”), Commissioner of Education, State Board of Education and the Public Employment Relations Commission (”PERC”), as well as state and federal courts. In addition to representing school boards in those forums, Larry serves as spokesperson and legal consultant for collective negotiations and arbitration matters.
A memorable event occurred during Larry’s tenure at the New Jersey School Board Association (NJSBA). On October 27, 1976 he had the privilege of introducing President Gerald R. Ford as the keynote speaker at the 24th Annual Workshop. It was the only time this occurred in NJSBA history. “It’s not every day you get to introduce the President of the United States,” Larry said.
In 2011 Larry was recognized by the New Jersey School Board Association and was honored with the “Distinguished Service Award.” The award is presented to a member of the New Jersey Association of School Attorneys who has provided distinguished service to the New Jersey school law community, boards of education and the students of the state.
Early in his distinguished career, Larry worked as a staff attorney with a private firm and staff attorney for a legal aid organization serving indigents in all phases of civil and criminal actions. He later served as a Senior Assistant Prosecutor in the Essex County New Jersey Prosecutor’s Office with more than 250 jury trials. He began his private practice in 1967 operating from his hometown of Belleville, New Jersey. In 1978 Larry was appointed by the Governor to become a Commissioner in the Public Employment Relations Commission.
Today Larry mentors associates and partners on the nuances of labor and negotiations, civil trials and managing and formulating strategies to help the Firm’s clients exceed their goals.
Larry actively serves on the Firm’s Management Committee, marketing and quality control committees. In these roles, Larry ensures that the Firm stays at the forefront of the legal landscape as it pertains to all Firm practice areas.
Larry has been recognized as a U.S. News “Best Lawyer” in the categories of Employment Law-Management and Labor Law-Management, and he is an AV Preeminent® Rated Lawyer by Lexis Nexis® Martindale-Hubbell. He has also been named by Woodward White as a “Best Lawyer in America.” While he appreciates the recognition of his peers, he is also proud of his work serving on the Rutgers Board of Governors and more recently as a member of the Lafayette College Leadership Council. At the pinnacle of all achievements however, Larry is proudest of his children and grandchildren and the growth and reputation of the Firm he founded almost 50 years ago.