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Jax Daily Record Monday, May 20, 201312:00 PM EST

Lawyer Snapshot: Jennifer A. Mansfield

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Family: My identical twin sister has a niece I adore, along with a niece and nephew from my brother. I'm the crazy aunt.

Pets: My 13-year-old American Bulldog, Daisy, recently passed away, so it's just my 14-year-old lab mix named Zoe.

Education: I received a BA in Economics from Northwestern University, with a year studying abroad at the University of Seville, Spain. I attended the University of Miami School of Law, after completing three years in Paraguay as a Peace Corps volunteer teaching business skills and bookkeeping to a rural farmers' cooperative.

Admitted to the Bar: 1999

Employed by: Holland & Knight

Field of practice: Commercial litigation, including ERISA defense and insurance coverage defense, and media law, including defamation defense and access to courts and public records.

Professional organizations: I have been active with The Florida Bar's Media & Communications Law Committee and Civil Procedure Rules Committee. I am a member of The Jacksonville Bar Association and the Federal Bar Association.

Community involvement: I am a board member of Mental Health America of Northeast Florida, Theatre Jacksonville and Jacksonville Community Council Inc. I was a board member of Riverside Avondale Preservation for years. I also am the vice chair of the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Commission.

How did you get involved?

My time as a Peace Corps volunteer reinforced the notion that good communities don't just happen; they are the result of impassioned citizens working to make things better. The Peace Corps' slogan has been "the toughest job you'll ever love," but that's life too. When you get around a great group of people to work on something you believe in, there is nothing better. It enriches my life and makes me happy.

How can someone else get involved?

Participate in JAX2025, the community visioning being conducted by JCCI. The JAX2025 release event was Saturday. Visit JAX2025.org to find your fit among the 10 vision areas for Jacksonville's future.

What have you learned/achieved through the experience?

My experience on the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Commission has been both a personal and professional learning experience. I have learned how the City operates and how our local government is run. I also have learned a lot about historic architecture and the economics of historic preservation. Historic preservation not only makes a place look nice; it has a large economic multiplier effect. It also instills a sense of identity and pride to a place that, in turn, creates well-functioning neighborhoods. As a lawyer, it has been professionally interesting to be a commissioner sitting at a quasi-judicial hearing and, as a media attorney, to be subject to the open records and Sunshine Law.

What was the last book you read or are reading?

Janet Evanovich's "Notorious Nineteen." The Stephanie Plum series is one of life's guilty pleasures.

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