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Florida Cabinet OKs DeSantis pick for FDLE commissioner

Mark Glass began serving as interim FDLE commissioner in May. The Cabinet approved two other appointments.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis waves during an inauguration ceremony at the Old Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2023, in Tallahassee.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis waves during an inauguration ceremony at the Old Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2023, in Tallahassee. [ LYNNE SLADKY | AP ]
Published Jan. 17|Updated Jan. 17

The state Cabinet on Tuesday approved Gov. Ron DeSantis’ requests to appoint Mark Glass as commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and former Palm Beach County Commissioner Dave Kerner as executive director of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

DeSantis, Attorney General Ashley Moody, Agriculture Commissioner Wilton Simpson and Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis also approved Brian Newman as chief judge of the state Division of Administrative Hearings.

All three appointments were approved without comment by Cabinet members.

Glass began serving as interim FDLE commissioner in May and was tapped by DeSantis in August for the permanent post. Previously, Glass served as director of the Capitol Police.

Kerner, a Democrat, crossed party lines to support DeSantis in last year’s election. He was a member of the state House before serving on the Palm Beach County Commission. Terry Rhodes, who served as executive director of the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles during DeSantis’ first term, announced last month that she was stepping down.

Newman became acting chief judge of the Division of Administrative hearings last summer and has been an administrative law judge since 2019. Former Chief Judge Pete Antonacci was appointed in July by DeSantis as director of the state’s new Office of Election Crimes and Security. Antonacci died after taking over the elections post.

While DeSantis has authority to appoint most department heads, some appointments require Cabinet approval.