Obituary: Bruce Beerman

Obituary: Bruce Beerman

The Atlanta native was a prominent lawyer in the city after graduating at the top of his law class at UGA.

Bruce Harvey Beerman, 68, of Atlanta died Thursday, July 20, 2017.

He was born at Crawford Long Hospital, grew up in the Chastain Park area of Atlanta and was educated in Atlanta Public Schools. In 1967, Bruce graduated from Dykes High School. He ranked academically at the top of an extraordinary class. Not only was he an excellent student, but he also was a fine athlete, claiming state records in track.

At Georgia Tech, he continued to run varsity track, won the Freshman Cake Race and was rewarded with the opportunity to kiss the Tech homecoming queen. He received a B.S. in mechanical engineering, magna cum laude, in 1971.

After college, Bruce entered the University of Georgia School of Law. He was a Woodruff Scholar and an editor on the law review, and he graduated No. 1 in his class in 1974. Shortly thereafter, he wed the love of his life, Janet Ellis, and they were married 42 years.

Bruce’s first job as a lawyer was with the firm of Smith, Cohen, Ringel, Kohler, Martin & Lowe, where he became a partner. Later, he and seven other lawyers branched out on their own and founded the firm Fortson & White. All eight were equal partners, and Bruce served as the managing partner. In 2000 he went to work part time at Burr & Forman, where he played a key role in building the litigation section in the firm’s Atlanta office. He retired in 2012. His areas of expertise included civil litigation, malpractice defense and school law.

Bruce was an avid golfer, maintaining membership at the Golf Club of Georgia, becoming a fixture at the club and playing six days a week for several years. He enjoyed traveling throughout the United States, playing the nation’s top courses, and on June 11, 2015, he was thrilled to make a hole in one.

Survivors include his wife, Janet Ellis Beerman; brothers Ron (Carol) Beerman and Fred (Mary) Beerman; and brother-in-law Bryan Ellis (Judi Honea). He was preceded in death by his son, Brad Beerman; his parents, Eloise and Fred Beerman; and his parents-in-law, Ruth and Elmo Ellis.

Sign the online guestbook at In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Bradford Scott Beerman Memorial Scholarship at Georgia State University or the University of Georgia School of Law. A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, July 24, at Arlington Memorial Park with Rabbi Loren Filson Lapidus officiating. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care, 770-451-4999.

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