The Florida Bar

News Releases


November 1, 2022
CONTACT: Maximillian Amster, Chair, [email protected]
Thirteenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission
TELEPHONE: 813-575-2266

Gov. Ron DeSantis has convened the 13th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission to select and submit the names of highly qualified candidates to fill the County Court vacancy created by the resignation of Judge Susan “Suzy” Lopez.

Judicial applications for this vacancy must be received before 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 11, 2022.

c/o Max Amster, Chair
Thirteenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission
Veridis Management LLC
[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 “Judicial Appointment Application 2022” 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: 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.

Interviews are anticipated to take place in mid-December 2022 at a to-be-determined location in Tampa, FL. Applicants selected to be interviewed will be contacted to confirm the time of the interviews. A complete interview schedule will be published in advance of the interviews. The public may attend the interviews and a remote appearance option 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 Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Questions about the application or interview process should be directed to the Chair, Maximillian Amster, or Vice Chair, Pedro Bajo.

The members of the Thirteenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission are:

Maximillian Amster, Chair, [email protected], 813-575-2266

Pedro Bajo, Vice Chair, [email protected], 813-223-3130

Michael Beltran [email protected], 813-653-7097

Teresa M. Gaffney, [email protected], 813-210-0493

Andrew J. Mayts, Jr., [email protected], 813-227-2248

Chad Mizelle, [email protected], 863-712-1833

Diego Pestana, [email protected], 352-346-1220

Matthew Hall, [email protected], 813-227-8479

Charles Reynolds, [email protected], 954-361-6984

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."