Gov. DeSantis appoints Simone Marstiller, Brent Johnson to Children’s Services Council

Both will serve 4-year terms.

The Children’s Services Council (CSC) of Leon County has two new members: lawyer Simone Marstiller and accountant Brent Johnson.

Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed the two to the CSC, which funds children’s services in the county through property tax revenues.

Both will serve four-year terms.

Marstiller is of counsel at the Gunster Yoakley Stewart P.A. law firm, where she advises clients on how best to work with governments to achieve their business goals.

DeSantis previously appointed her as Secretary of the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA). She left the position in November 2022.

She has also served as Secretary of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Interim Secretary of the Department of Management Services and State Chief Information Officer under ex-Gov. Jeb Bush, for whom she also worked as Deputy Chief of Staff and Assistant General Counsel.

Simone Marstiller brings ample experience and insight to her new role with the CSC. Image via Gunster.

Other roles Marstiller held include Associate Deputy Attorney General under former Attorney General Bill McCollum, and Executive Director of the Florida Elections Commission, General Counsel for the Department of Management Services, and Chief Appellate Counsel for AHCA.

Before joining Gunster, Marstiller served for six years as a judge on the 1st District Court of Appeal — a post to which former Gov. Charlie Crist appointed her.

Marstiller was born in Monrovia, Liberia, and grew up in St. Petersburg. She earned her Juris Doctor in 1996 and a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1988 from Stetson University in Gulfport.

She is a board member of the Guardian ad Litem Foundation, which supports and funds the court representation of abused, abandoned and neglected children.

And evidently, she’s no fan of peanut butter-flavored whiskey.

Johnson has worked as the Executive Director of Radey Law Firm since May 2015. Before that, he was the Senior Manager of North Highland Consulting and a staff auditor for the Florida Auditor General.

Brent Johnson’s community involvements include a three-year stint leading the Florida Institute of CPAs. Image via Radey Law Firm.

He also served from 2007 to 2010 as Deputy Executive Director of the Florida Institute of CPAs, a group to which he is still a member, along with the nationwide organization.

Johnson earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Florida State University in 1982.

Approved by Leon County voters in 2020, the CSC of Leon County was established to provide children with early learning and reading skills, development, treatment, preventative treatment and other services.

It is an independent special district that provides funding for those services throughout the county by annually levying property taxes, not exceeding the maximum millage rate of one-half mill.

The organization’s board consists of 10 members. Other members include County Commissioner Carolyn Cummings, Leon County Superintendent Rocky Hanna, School Board member Darryl Jones, 2nd Judicial Court Judge Anthony Miller, Department of Children and Families appointee Terrence Watts and DeSantis appointees  Zandra Mallory Glenn, Richard “Paul’ Mitchell and George “Mark” O’Bryant.

Jesse Scheckner

Jesse Scheckner has covered South Florida with a focus on Miami-Dade County since 2012. His work has been recognized by the Hearst Foundation, Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida MMA Awards and Miami New Times. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JesseScheckner.


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