Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Valerie Manno Schurr had been a nurse for a dozen years when she passed the Florida Bar exam. She kept working in the operating room.

“One day we had a new surgeon come in, and they said, ‘You know there’s a lawyer in the room. You better be careful,’ ” she said. After the operation, “the head nurse came to me and said, ‘You know you made that guy very nervous. He didn’t like that there was a lawyer in the room.’ ”

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