Friday, June 27, 2008

Quince to become Florida's first black woman to serve as chief justice

By Jim Ash • Florida Captial Bureau Chief • June 27, 2008

Florida Supreme Court Justice Peggy Quince can add another precedent to her resume today when she becomes the state's first black woman to serve as chief justice.

Quince, a 60-year-old product of segregated schools, takes charge of the state's court system and becomes to first black woman to head any branch of Florida government.

Quince graduated from Howard University and earned her law degree at Catholic University. She is a veteran of the Florida judicial system, serving as an assistant attorney general handling death penalty cases and judge on the Second District Court of Appeal.

In 1998, Gov. Lawton Chiles and Gov.-elect Jeb Bush shared Quince's appointment to the Supreme Court when a question arose about which administration had the authority.

Quince moved to Tampa 30 years ago and is the mother of two.

A ceremony at the Supreme Court is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.

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