Judge Joseph Boatwright II

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Candidate Background

Judicial experience


Retired or Appointed Elsewhere


Expected Retirement

2023 - present

Judge, 5th District Court of Appeal. Appointed by Governor Ron DeSantis.

2012 - 2022

County Judge, Putnam County. He was initially elected with 55.9% of the vote. Ran unopposed in 2018. During this role, he has been cross-assigned to the Circuit Court, has acted as a visiting judge for two Courts of Appeal, and he assisted the Chief Judge as an Administrative Judge.

* Appointed instead of running for election because of a vacancy between election cycles.

legal experience

Before he became a judge, Boatwright had about 10 years of experience as an attorney. In that time, he argued 20 jury trials, 20 non-jury trials, and 3 cases for administrative bodies to completion. For the first 4 years, he was a Prosecutor, assigned both misdemeanor and felony cases. He then moved to private practice representing individuals and local government entities. He specialized in civil cases for 4 years, including family, real property, tax, and local government law. He returned to the prosecutor's office for 4 years. On top of a case load he supervised the attorneys and staff.

Before that, he clerked for 5 months at American Center for Law and Justice. He was a Student Attorney for 8 months at the  D.C. Law Students in Court Program where argued landlord/tenant cases. He also spent 4 months as a Research Assistant for a professor at Catholic University.

political experience

other relevant tidbits

This judge is a member of the Federalist Society.

This judge is a textualist, who uses an interpretation of the Constitution that is advocated by the Federalist Society.

Since 2003, he has been an adjunct professor at different colleges, including St. Johns River State College, Liberty University, Regent University School of Law, and Florida Coastal School of Law. He teaches classes related to law.

Before practicing law, he spent six years as Principal of Open Bible Baptist Academy, a private school in Putnam County. During this time he earned a Masters Degree in Religious Education from Covington Theological Seminary.

He was a member of the Catholic University Law Review (2001-2002). He was on the editorial board for the Judicature Law Journal published by Duke Law School (2017-2018) and was Editor in Chief of that same journal for Spring 2018.

additional Resources

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