Judge Ralph Fisch was born in Havana, Cuba on July 4, 1937. He graduated from the American high school, Candler College, in Havana and moved to Miami to attend business school at the University of Miami. During his time in college, he was elected Secretary of Foreign Students and served as a member of the Student Body Government. He graduated from UM in 1958.
After graduation, he attended University of Miami’s School of Law and graduated in 1961. Once he graduated and passed the Florida Bar exam, he was sworn in at the Florida Supreme Court as a member of the Bar.
In 1967, he was appointed to be the Judge of the Municipal Court in Medley, Florida and 2 years later he became the Court’s Senior Judge. During this time, he also served in the police department and held several positions, the last being Lieutenant. He was able to hold both positions under the opinion of the Attorney General with one caveat- he could not be the trial judge for any case in which he participated in the arrest. He was also one of the first Cuban-American judges to hold such a position in Dade County, Florida.
Judge Fisch also held several important positions under different government officials. He served as the legal advisor on Latin American matters to Mayor Steve Clark and served as a member of the Florida Highway Safety Council during the term of Governor Kirk. Over the course of his 50+ years of practice, he represented the Consul General and the governments of Venezuela and Panama. He even served as a member of the Criminal Justice Commission. Additionally, in July of 2000, he was appointed by Lt. Governor, Honorable Toni Jennings, to serve as a member of the Florida Supreme Court Commission.
In the mid 1990’s, Judge Fisch became the Chairman of the Florida Police Chiefs Education and Research Foundation. Judge Fisch passed away on August 9, 2019 after a long illness.
Aside from the extremely remarkable career Judge Fisch had, he was very proud of his family. He married his wife, Charlene Hornstein in 1958 and together they had 3 children- Michelle, Stephanie, and Mark. Mark is a former police officer in Palm Beach Gardens and is now a practicing attorney in the same city. There are also 5 grandchildren- Rachel, Carolina, Valentina, Adina, and Jacob, and 2 great-grandchildren, Alex and Sasha.