Eight judges appointed or elevated in Florida courts
Some 56.3% of law students who took the Florida Bar Examination this year passed.

court judge gavel
Gov. Ron DeSantis made the appointments Wednesday.

Gov. Ron DeSantis filled eight openings on the bench in courts across Florida Wednesday.

Lake County Judge Cary Rada was promoted to a seat on the Fifth Judicial Circuit Court. The Stetson University College of Law grad previously worked in the State Attorney’s Office within the circuit. He’s filling a seat opened by the retirement of longtime Circuit Court Judge Mark Hill.

George Wright, an assistant state attorney in the Eighth Judicial Circuit since 2008, will now fill a spot on the circuit court bench there. The Gainesville attorney graduated locally from the University of Florida College of Law. Previously a clerk for U.S. District Judge Maurice Paul, he’s filling a seat previously held by retiring Circuit Court Judge James Nilon.

William Henry, a shareholder at Burke, Blue, Hutchinson, Smith, Zimmerman, Burke, Henry & Masters in Lynn Haven, will fill retiring Circuit Court Judge Michael Overstreet’s seat on the Fourteenth Judicial Circuit Court. The attorney also graduated from UF’s law school.

Palm Beach County Judge Paige Gillman moves up to the Nineteenth Circuit Court. Another UF law grad and former assistant state attorney in the circuit, she’s filling the seat of retiring Judge Jessica Ticktin.

Tabitha Blackmon, a prosecutor in the State Attorney’s Office in the 17th Judicial Circuit, was appointed as Broward County Judge. The UF Law grad replaces Michael Davis, who was recently elevated to the Circuit Court.

Jason Jones, general counsel for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, was appointed as Leon County Judge. A graduate of Florida State University’s College of Law, he’s filling a seat left open by Anthony Miller’s promotion to Circuit Court.

Cristina Rivera Correa, assistant School Board Attorney for Miami-Dade Public Schools, was appointed to the Miami-Dade County Court. The Florida International University law grad is taking Circuit Court Judge Zachary Miller’s old seat.

Also filling a spot on the Miami-Dade county bench, Chiaka Ihekwaba, an assistant state attorney in the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, fills a vacancy left by the elevation of Judge Lody Jean. Ihekwaba earned a barrister-at-law degree from the Nigerian Law School and a law degree from St. Thomas University.

Staff Reports


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