Welcome Message from the President
Jonathan Claussen

The Florida Supreme Court has seen unprecedented change in its makeup this past year, just as we all have seen unprecedented change in the way we live our day-to-day lives due to COVID-19 and the resulting state-wide shut down.

As we slowly begin to emerge from this worldwide crisis, I look back on the unique events that have taken place during this period. The Florida Supreme Court held its first oral argument via Zoom video conference in May 2020, Chief Justice Canady suspended jury trials through July 2020, the Court’s Public Information Office facilitated virtual tours of the Supreme Court building, and judges across the State have adapted to our “new normal” by holding proceedings in various new formats.

Likewise, I encourage you to check out our newly redesigned Historical Review Magazine is a first for the Society, not only due to the fresh new look, but also because it marks the first bi- annual edition of the magazine. The Society partnered with The Florida Bar for this issue of the Historical Review in honoring the Bar’s 70th anniversary. Many of the enclosed articles reflect and honor The Florida Bar’s storied past. Many thanks to the tireless efforts of our magazine editor, Melanie Kalmanson, in spearheading this project for the Society.

The Society has maintained operations and continued to further its mission during the shutdown. Each meeting and project brought news from our Trustees across the State on how each corner of the State was doing. I want to thank our Trustees and members for their support during these uncertain times.

As we all know, Governor Ron DeSantis just recently appointed John Couriel and Renatha Francis as the newest members of the Court. The Society welcomes them to the Court and looks forward to assisting with the investitures of these new justices as it has done in the past.

The Society remains dedicated to preserving the Court’s history through artifact acquisitions, oral histories, written publications, and further outreach to our members via newly formed social media avenues. We continue to welcome member submissions and ideas for future articles, historical artifact identification, and archiving.

At the outset of the pandemic, a friend sent me a message: “Don’t count the days in quarantine, make the days in quarantine count.” The Society has indeed made strides in several areas, from this magazine, to conducting oral histories, to commemorating the historic Supreme Court building with a historic registry monument. We will continue to make the days count as we adjust to a new way of life. I thank you for your support and hope that you and your loved ones are safe and healthy.


Jon Claussen


Florida Supreme Court Historical Society

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