DeSantis appoints to Florida Supreme Court

Renatha Francis speaks in West Palm Beach Aug. 5 after being nominated to sit on the Florida...
Renatha Francis speaks in West Palm Beach Aug. 5 after being nominated to sit on the Florida Supreme Court.(Courtesy of The Florida Channel)
Published: Aug. 5, 2022 at 11:46 AM EDT
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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (WWSB) - Palm Beach County Judge Renatha Francis is set to become the newest member of the Florida Supreme Court.

Gov. Ron DeSantis made the announcement Friday morning at the historic old Palm Beach County courthouse in downtown West Palm Beach. Francis will officially take her seat Sept. 1, filling the vacancy of Justice Alan Lawson, an appointee of Gov. Rick Scott, who is set to leave the bench Aug. 31.

The appointment of Francis comes after the state’s Supreme Court Judicial Nominating Commission announced in June that she was among six applicants under consideration.

Francis made headlines in May 2020 when DeSantis appointed her to serve on the state’s highest court.

However, just three months later, the court ruled she was not eligible, not having been a member of the Florida Bar for 10 years, as required by the state Constitution.

Francis, born in Jamaica, would become the first Caribbean-American to sit on the Florida Supreme Court. She moved to Florida after running two businesses in Jamaica.

She will become the only Black justice currently serving on the court and just the second female alongside Judge Jamie Grosshans.

Francis has been a judge in Palm Beach County since 2019, when DeSantis appointed her to the 15th Judicial Circuit.

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