At her last commission meeting Thursday as Miami’s city attorney, Julie Bru carried the microphone to the front of the dais at City Hall, opened a small black case with a sparkling ring inside – and asked Miami Police Officer Suzy Izaguirre to marry her.
Izaguirre, tears streaking down her cheeks and caught by surprise, agreed to make the couple’s 10-year relationship legal as commissioners, legal staff, and audience members rained applause.
“Even though we can’t do it in the state of Florida, we’re going to move to New York to live together as wife and wife,” Bru said.
Izaguirre hugged Police Chief Manuel Orosa. Bru hugged everyone else.
It was a fitting end to Bru’s five years as city attorney, years filled with ups and downs and child-rearing and the loss of a son. Looking around the chamber, Bru said she wasn’t sure if she would have survived the city’s top legal post without the support of her Miami family. She began at the city attorney’s office in 1989.
With Bru’s retirement, Victoria Méndez will take over next week as the new city attorney.
Bru, barely keeping her composure, said Miami leaders “not only tolerated our alternative lifestyle, but accepted it.”
Just before the surprise announcement, Commission Chair Marc Sarnoff declared Thursday Julie O. Bru Day.
Commissioner Michelle Spence-Jones told Bru she’s been an inspiration. Then the commissioner spoke directly to Méndez.
“You have some pretty tough pumps to fill,” she said.