Devin Collier named new judge for 14th Circuit

On Tuesday afternoon, Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed Devin Collier to fill the vacancy on the 14th Judicial Circuit left after the retirement of Circuit Judge John Fishel II. 

Collier, 38, a prosecutor for the State Attorney’s Office from Panama City, will take office on Feb. 1, handling Circuit felonies in Gulf County.

He was one of six local attorneys named as candidates for the position in November. The others were Brian Hill, Shalla Jefcoat, Peter Overstreet, Jaqueline Smith and Grant Spitzer.

“I’m grateful and humbled, and I appreciate the confidence the Governor and his staff and our community has placed in me,” said Collier in a press release. “It was an absolute surprise. I come from very simple beginnings, and never had I imagined that I would be in a position to be a Circuit Judge.”

Collier credited State Attorney Larry Basford, for mentoring him and helping him achieve his goals over the years.

“There’s no question in my mind that I would not be where I am but for Larry Basford,” he said. “He has, without equivocation, supported me from the time I was a young lawyer. I don’t know what he saw in me, but he saw something.

The new judge rejoined the State Attorney’s Office in July as a felony prosecutor in the Major Crimes Division. He has also worked for the U.S. Department of the Interior, Office of the Solicitor.

Collier earned his Juris Doctorate, Cum Laude, at the Florida A&M University College of Law.

Meet the Editor

Wendy Weitzel, The Star’s digital editor, joined the news outlet in August 2021, as a reporter covering primarily Gulf County.

Prior to then, she interned for Oklahoma-based news wire service Gaylord News and for Oklahoma City-based online newspaper during her four years at the University of Oklahoma, from which she graduated in May with degrees in online journalism and political science.

While at OU, Weitzel was selected as Carnegie-Knight News21 Investigative Fellow among 30 top journalism students from around the country. She also was senior editor managing a 12-person newsroom in coordination with Oklahoma Watch, a non-profit news organization in eastern Oklahoma.

Wendy Weitzel The Star Digital Editor

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