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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

6 nominees to replace Paul Hawkes forwarded to Rick Scott

6

January

Two circuit judges and a solicitor general are among the six nominees selected Friday as possible replacements for 1st District Court of Appeal Judge Paul M. Hawkes.

Judges Charles W. Dodson, 59, of Tallahassee and Waddell A. Wallace III, 58 of Jacksonville are the only judges on a list that includes solicitor general Scott Makar, 52, of Jacksonville.

Three Tallahassee lawyers also made the list, which goes next to Gov. Rick Scott for a final selection. They are Stephen C. Emmanuel, 54; Miguel A. Olivella Jr., 56 and Timothy D. Osterhaus, 40. 

The nominees, selected by the Judicial Nominating Commission for the 1st District Court of Appeal, are likely to spark a bitter dispute in Jacksonville where some lawyers have long opposed Makar’s appointment to the bench. Makar has repeatedly applied for the court but became the subject of a nasty internal dispute in 2000 when one member of the Judicial Nominating Commission questioned him about his 1998 divorce.

Makar, a Republican with close ties to former Gov. Jeb Bush and former Attorney General Bill McCollum, also had strong support from some Democrats, including former Amercian Bar Association President Martha Barnett.

The questions led to a special investigation which ended when former Supreme Court Justice Joseph Hatchett determined that the highly
personal questions were not out of line.

Hawkes was forced to resign after being charged with misconduct by the Judicial Qualifications Commission. His last day on the court was
Wednesday. The 15-member appellate court hears virtually all appeals involving lawsuits against the state and most workers compensation
disputes in addition to all civil and criminal cases in 32 North Florida counties from Jacksonville to Pensacola.

Lucy Morgan, Times Senior Correspondent

[Last modified: Saturday, January 7, 2012 2:14pm]

    

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