The Florida Bar

News Releases


September 17, 2021
CONTACT: Christine Derr, Chair, [email protected]
Thirteenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission
TELEPHONE: 813-223-5421

As a result of the six new Thirteenth Judicial Circuit County Court vacancies effective July 1, 2021, Gov. Ron DeSantis has convened the Thirteenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission to select and submit the names of highly qualified candidates to fill the remaining three vacancies.

The judicial application period for these vacancies is being reopened to remedy inadvertent errors with the publication of notifications. Applications must be received before 5 p.m. on Monday, September 20, 2021, at the following location:

c/o Christine Derr, Chair
Thirteenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission
Harris, Hunt & Derr, P.A.
Wells Fargo Center
100 South Ashley Drive, Suite 300
Tampa, FL 33602
[email protected]

Applicants must have been a member of the Florida Bar for the preceding five years and must be a registered voter. The individual appointed must reside in the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit at the time that he or she is appointed.

The “Revised Judicial Application” may be downloaded from the Office of the Governor.  PLEASE NOTE: Effective July 1, 2020, the application has been substantially revised. Please be sure to download and use the current application.  Applicants must submit:

  • One digital (electronic) signed copy of the application (as a .PDF).
  • One digital (electronic) signed copy of the application (as a .PDF) with personal information not subject to public disclosure redacted as permitted by Section 119.071, Florida Statutes, and suitable for production in response to public records requests.

NOTE TO APPLICANTS: Applicants who have previously applied to the July 2021 process to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Joelle Ann Ober, or the August 2021 process to fill three of the six new county court seats do not need to reapply for this process. Your applications will be considered for this process. All questions in the application must be fully and completely answered. The submitted application must include the required financial disclosures, a writing sample, and a recent photograph. Applications must also include current contact information, including e-mail addresses, for all judges, co-counsel, opposing counsel, and references to facilitate the background investigation that members of the Commission will conduct.  Applications and redacted applications must be in .PDF form. The two .PDF files should be named in a “last name.first name” format. For example: Bob Smith should submit two files names: (1) Smith.Bob.pdf and (2) Smith.Bob-REDACTED.pdf. No paper applications will be accepted.

A complete interview schedule will be published in the coming weeks. Applicants selected to be interviewed will be contacted to confirm the time of the interviews.  A remote appearance option also will be made available for the public to attend the interviews.

All proceedings of the Commission are open to the public except for deliberations. Accordingly, applicants should not expect their applications to be kept confidential.  If an applicant is nominated, all materials attached to the original application will be submitted to the Governor.

Questions about the application or interview process should be directed to the Chair, Christine Derr.

The members of the Thirteenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission are:

Christine L. Derr, Vice Chair, [email protected], 813-223-5421
Ryan Sainz, Vice Chair, [email protected], 813-223-5505
Maxmillian Amster, [email protected], 813-575-2266
Carter Andersen, Chair, [email protected], 813-204-6405
Pedro Bajo, [email protected], 813-443-2199
Michael Beltran [email protected] 813-870-3073
Teresa M. Gaffney, [email protected], 813-287-1159
Thomas Newcomb Hyde, [email protected], 813-855-2071
Andrew J. Mayts, Jr., [email protected], 813-227-2248

Members of the bench, the Bar and the public are urged to contact the members of the Commission concerning applicants for judicial positions.

EDITORS: Please note The Florida Bar is not an association and "Association" is not part of our name. Proper reference is "The Florida Bar." Local bar organizations are properly termed "associations."