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Gov. DeSantis makes 75 Judicial Nominating Commission appointments

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Judge with GavelGov. Ron DeSantis July 2 made 75 appointments and reappointments to Florida’s Judicial Nominating Commissions.

Florida Supreme Court Judicial Nominating Commission

  • Harout Samra, of Coral Gables, is an associate at DLA Piper. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Miami. Samra is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.

First District Court of Appeal JNC

  • Christa E. Calamas, of Tallahassee, is a deputy staff director of the Florida House of Representatives. She received her bachelor’s degree from Eckerd College and her law degree from the University of Florida. Calamas is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Peter Penrod, of Tallahassee, is the chief of staff with the Florida Department of Financial Services. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and his law degree from the Florida Coastal School of Law. Penrod is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Gary K. Hunter, of Tallahassee, is a shareholder of Hopping Green & Sams, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Georgia. Hunter is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

Second District Court of Appeal JNC

  • Charbel Barakat, of Tampa, is the vice-president and chief counsel for D.R. Horton of Tampa. He received his bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University and his law degree from New York University. Barakat is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Hunter H. Chamberlin, of Tampa, is the owner of Chamberlin Law Firm, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from Hamilton College and his law degree from the University of Miami. Chamberlin is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Traci Koster, of Tampa, is an attorney with Nelson Law Group. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Florida and her law degree from Stetson University. Koster is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

Third District Court of Appeal JNC

  • Barry Rothberg, of Miami Beach, is a shareholder with Greenberg Taurig, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from Duke University. Rothberg is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2022.
  • Lauren Morse, of Miami, is an assistant county attorney for Miami-Dade County. She received her bachelor’s degree from Duke University and her law degree from Yale University. Morse is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Adam Foslid, of Coral Gables, is a partner with Stumphauzer, Foslid, Sloman, Ross & Kolaya, PLLC. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and his law degree from George Washington University. Foslid is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

Fourth District Court of Appeal JNC

  • Alexis Yarbrough, of Ft. Lauderdale, is the former general counsel of the Florida Department of Transportation and a former director at Tripp Scott. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Miami and her law degree from Nova Southeastern University. Yarbrough is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Eric Yesner, of Parkland, is a judicial law clerk for Southern District of Florida Judge Raag Singhal. He received his bachelor’s degree from Florida Atlantic University and his law degree from Nova Southeastern University. Yesner is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Debra A. Jenks, of West Palm Beach, is a partner with Jenks & Harvey, LLP. She received her bachelor’s degree from New College and her law degree from Lewis and Clark Law School. Jenks is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

Fifth District Court of Appeal JNC

  • Lauren Blocker, of Ponte Vedra, is corporate counsel at Fidelity Information Services, LLC. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and her law degree from Florida Coastal School of Law. Blocker is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2023.
  • Amanda Carl, of Osteen, is in-house counsel at A. Duda & Sons. She received her bachelor’s degree and her law degree from the University of Florida. Carl is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Carrie Eisnaugle, of Sanford, is an independent consultant and previously was an associate at Holland & Knight. She received her bachelor’s degree from Luther College and her law degree from Vanderbilt University. Eisnaugle is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Michael C. Sasso, of Oviedo, is a partner with Sasso & Sasso. He received his bachelor’s degree from Colgate University and his law degree from Salmon Chase College of Law. Sasso is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

First Circuit JNC 

  • Kerry Anne Schultz, of Gulf Breeze, is a manager and attorney with Fountain, Schultz & Bridgford, P.L.L.C. She received her bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma City University and her law degree from Thomas M. Cooley School of Law. Schultz is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Robert E. Jones III, of Pensacola, is a partner at Beggs & Lane. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida, his law degree from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and a Master of Laws in Taxation from the University of Florida. Jones is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Lisa Jo Spencer, of Mary Esther, is a solo practitioner with Lisa Jo Spencer, P.A. She received her bachelor’s degree from Milligan College and her law degree from Stetson University. Spencer is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

Second Circuit JNC 

  • Matthew Carson, of Tallahassee, is an attorney with Sniffen & Spellman, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Florida. Carson is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Robert Clarke, of Tallahassee, is a shareholder with Ausley McMullen. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from Florida State University. Clarke is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • William Spicola, of Tallahassee, is the president of William Spicola, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from the University of Florida. Spicola is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

Fourth Circuit JNC

  • Chanda Rogers, of Fernandina Beach, is a partner with Faltemier Rogers, PLLC. She received her bachelor’s degree from Louisiana Tech University and her law degree from Florida Coastal School of Law. Rogers is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Patrick Kilbane, of Jacksonville, is a wealth advisor and general counsel with Ullman Wealth Partners. He received his bachelor’s degree from Adrian College and his law degree from the University of Notre Dame. Kilbane is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Robert Harris, of Jacksonville, is a managing partner with Harris Guidi Rosner, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from the University of Florida. Harris is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by the Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

Fifth Circuit JNC 

  • Janice “JJ” Dahl, of Clermont, is the president of Dahl Family Law Group. She received her bachelor’s degree from Nova College and her law degree from Florida State University. Dahl is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2023.
  • Shanta Matthews, of Ocala, is the owner of Shanta Matthews Attorney at Law, PLLC. She received her bachelor’s degree from Florida State University and her law degree from the University of Florida. Matthews is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

Sixth Circuit JNC 

  • Sonny Im, of Tarpon Springs, is an attorney with the Law Office of Sonny Im. He previously served as a Pinellas County Judge and was the first Korean-American male judge in Florida. He received his bachelor’s degree from Florida Atlantic University and his law degree from the University of Miami. Im is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2022.
  • Adam Ross, of Clearwater, is the executive director and an assistant state attorney of the Sixth Circuit Office of the State Attorney. He received his bachelor’s degree from Trinity College and his law degree from Barry University. Ross is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Berny Jacques, of Seminole, is the development director of the Big Brothers and Sisters of Tampa Bay. He received his bachelor’s degree from Washington Adventist University and his law degree from Stetson University. Jacques is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Lee Haas, of Clearwater, is a shareholder with Haas & Castillo, PLLC. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Florida. Haas is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

Seventh Circuit JNC

  • Terrence White, of Ormond Beach, is a partner at Upchurch Watson White & Max Mediation Group. He received his bachelor’s degree from Le Moyne College and his law degree from Stetson University. White is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • John Reid, of Daytona Beach Shores, is the chief of operation and an assistant state attorney of the Seventh Circuit Office of the State Attorney. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and his law degree from the University Oklahoma. Reid is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Travis Mydock, of St. Augustine, is an attorney with Mydock Law. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Florida. Mydock is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

Eighth Circuit JNC

  • Rebecca Shinholser, of Gainesville, is an assistant state attorney and Juvenile Division Chief of the Eighth Circuit Office of the State Attorney. She received her bachelor’s degree from Feed Hardeman University and her law degree from the University of Florida. Shinholser is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2023.
  • Lindsey Turner, of Gainesville, is an associate with Scruggs, Carmichael & Wershow. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Alabama and her law degree from Mississippi College. Turner is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2023.
  • Christopher Elsey, of Gainesville, is an assistant U.S. attorney of the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Florida. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from the University of Florida. Elsey is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Brent Siegel, of Gainesville, is an attorney with Siegel, Hughes & Ross. He received his bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University and his law degree from the University of Florida. Siegel is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

Ninth Circuit JNC

  • Tara Tedrow, of Orlando, is a shareholder with Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed, P.A. She received her bachelor’s degree from Wake Forest University and her law degree from the University of Florida. Tedrow is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Matthew Klein, of Orlando, is the Senior Legal Counsel with Signature Aviation. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Florida. Klein is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Joshua Grosshans, of Winter Garden, is an attorney with Latham, Luna, Eden & Beaudine, LLP. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Florida and his law degree from Florida State University. Grosshans is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

10th Circuit JNC

  • Nicholas Zbrzeznj, of Bartow, is an associate with Frost Law Firm, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University and his law degree from Florida Coastal School of Law. Zbrzeznj is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2022.
  • Lydia Zbrzeznj, of Bartow, is a managing member with Southern Atlantic Group, PLLC. She received her bachelor’s degree from the College of William and Mary and her law degree from Florida Coastal School of Law. Zbrzeznj is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Benjamin Hardin, of Lakeland, is an attorney with Hardin & Ball, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from Florida State University and his law degree from Mercer University. Hardin is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Richard Straughn, of Lake Wales, is a partner with Straughn & Turner, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from the University of Florida. Straughn is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

11th Circuit JNC

  • David Axelman, of Miami, is an attorney with Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, LLP. He received his bachelor’s degree from Florida International University and his law degree from the University of Miami. Axelman is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Hayden O’Byrne, of Coral Gables, is an assistant U.S. attorney for the Office of the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from the University of Miami. O’Byrne is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Walter Harvey, of Miami Shores, is a board attorney with The School Board of Miami-Dade County. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of California and his law degree from Harvard Law School. Harvey is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

12th Circuit JNC

  • William Robinson, of Bradenton, is the principal of Blalock Walters, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame and his law degree from Stetson University. Robinson is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Alvin Brown, of Bradenton, is an advisor with United States Special Operations Command and an attorney with Alvin K. Brown, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida and his law degree from Stetson University. Brown is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Bonnie Lee Polk, of Sarasota, is an attorney with Williams, Parker, Harrison, Dietz & Getzen. She received her bachelor’s degree from Lynn University and her law degree from Stetson University. Polk is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

13th Circuit JNC 

  • Michael Beltran, of Lithia, is counsel with Ansa Assuncao, LLP. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania and his law degree from Harvard Law School. Beltran is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Maximillian Amster, of Tampa, is the chief executive officer of Veridis Management LLC. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin and his law degree from Harvard Law School. Amster is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.

14th Circuit JNC

  • Brandon R. Burg, of Panama City, is an attorney with Burg Law Firm, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from Florida State University. Burg is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Mark Graham, of Panama City Beach, is an assistant state attorney with the 14tth Circuit Office of the State Attorney. He received his bachelor’s degree and his law degree from Florida State University. Graham is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • William Lewis, of Panama City, is the general counsel of William A. Lewis Attorney at Law, PLLC. He received his bachelor’s degree from Auburn University and his law degree from Stetson University. Lewis is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

15th Circuit JNC 

  • Phillip Fender, of West Palm Beach, is the CEO of Transformation Media and the director of House of Protection. He received his bachelor’s degree from Nova Southeastern University. Fender is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Gordon Dieterle, of Boca Raton, is a partner with Peter M. Feaman, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from New York University and his law degree from Florida State University. Dieterle is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.

16th Circuit JNC 

  • Michael Puto, of Marathon, was the former city manager for the City of Marathon. He received his bachelor’s degree from Saint Leo University. Puto is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2023.
  • Ashley Sybesma, of Key West, is an attorney with Smith Hawks, PL. She received her bachelor’s degree from Florida Atlantic University and her law degree from the University of Miami. Sybesma is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2023.
  • Richard McChesney, of Key West, is an associate attorney with Spottswood, Spottswood, Spottswood & Sterling, PLLC. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Tampa and his law degree from Florida International University. McChesney is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Nicholas Mulick, of Tavernier, is an attorney with Nicholas W. Mulick, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from William Patterson University and his law degree from Rutgers School of Law. Mulick is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Robert Shillinger, of Key West, is the county attorney for Monroe County Board of County Commissioners. He received his bachelor’s degree from Wake Forest University and his law degree from the University of Baltimore. Shillinger is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

17th Circuit JNC

  • Christina Sanabria, of Coral Springs, is the division supervising attorney with Farmers Insurance Exchange Florida. She received her bachelor’s degree from Fordham University and her law degree from New York Law School. Sanabria is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Kenneth Joyce, of Coral Springs, is a partner with Lewis, Brisbois, Bisgaard & Smith, LLP. He received his bachelor’s degree from University of Florida and his law degree from Nova Southeastern University. Joyce is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Thomas Oates, of Lighthouse Point, is a partner with The Law Offices of Oates & Oates, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and his law degree from the Stetson University. Oates is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

18th Circuit JNC

  • Shannon Snedaker, of Lake Mary, is the managing partner at Snedaker Law. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida and her law degree from Barry University. Snedaker is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • David Bear, of Winter Springs, is the managing attorney at Bear Legal Solutions. He received his bachelor’s degree from Bates College and his law degree from Florida State University. Bear is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2024. 

19th Circuit JNC

  • Adam Schwartz, of Stuart, is a partner with Fox, McCluskey, Bush & Robison Law Firm. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from Florida State University. Schwartz is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Bradley Rossway, of Vero Beach, is the managing member with Rossway, Swan, Tierney, Barry & Oliver Law Firm. He received his bachelor’s degree from Tulane University and his law degree from Nova Southeastern University. Rossway is reappointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

20th Circuit JNC 

  • Bernard Long, of Bonita Springs, is a retired attorney. He received his bachelor’s degree from College of the Holy Cross and his law degree from the University of Virginia. Long is reappointed for a term ending July 1, 2022.
  • Richard Montecalvo, of Naples, is the chief assistant state attorney of the 20th circuit Office of the State Attorney. He received his bachelor’s degree from Trenton State College and his law degree from Widener University. Montecalvo is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Mike Carr, of Naples, is a partner with Carr Law Offices Inc, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Florida. Carr is appointed for a term ending July 1, 2024.
  • Sharon Hanlon, of Naples, is a solo practitioner with Law Office of Sharon M. Hanlon, P.A. She received her bachelor’s degree from St. Catherine University and her law degree from Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School. Hanlon is appointed from a list of nominees submitted by The Florida Bar for a term ending July 1, 2024.

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