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Jax Daily Record Monday, May 24, 202104:00 PM EST

Jamie Grosshans on the long story of the Florida Constitution

The state Supreme Court justice gives a history lesson to the Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association.
by: Max Marbut Associate Editor

State Supreme Court Justice Jamie Grosshans explained the history of the Florida Constitution to the Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association when she spoke to the group May 13 at The River Club.

She explained the history that began in 1838 when the first document was written and adopted. It was rewritten in 1861, 1865, 1868 and 1885. The state constitution in its current form was adopted in 1968.

“We are one of the top seven states with that many. In Florida, we like to do a little extra,” Grosshans said.

Only 17 states have ratified their constitutions since 1900, and two – Alaska and Hawaii – wrote constitutions after they became states in that period.

Since 1968, the state constitution has been amended 100 times, she said.

The transition from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeal to the state Supreme Court means a subtle change in how Grosshans writes opinions.

“In the 5th DCA, every word mattered in an opinion. Now, every word really matters. Every word, every sentence, is considered,” Grosshans said.

Grosshans graduated from the University of Mississippi School of Law and then moved to Central Florida where she was an assistant state attorney. She later went into private practice focused on family and criminal defense law.

Appointed to the Orange County Court in 2017 and then to the 5th District Court of Appeal in 2018 by former Gov. Rick Scott, Grosshans was appointed to Florida’s highest court in 2020 by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

 Also at the meeting, the members elected the JWLA’s 2021-22 officers and directors:

• President Kelli Lueckert

• President-elect Kayla Haines Herrin

• Treasurer Kimberly Woods

• Secretary Janeen Kirch

• Programs Director Brittany Ford

• Judicial Reception Directors Kathryn Stanfill and Hannah Anderson 

• Membership Director Brandi Londrico

• Events Directors Angie Huston Miller and Destardes Moore

• Communications Director Kimber Strawbridge

• Florida Association for Women Lawyers Representative Kim Israel

The association’s next meeting is June 21, when Orlando family law attorney Rania Arwani will discuss the impact of domestic violence on the community.


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