September 17, 2019
Jan Carver recently filed with the Supervisor of Elections to begin her campaign for election as Nassau County Court Judge, a position which requires knowledge, skills and compassion. Her record over the past 30 years in Nassau County, both personal and professional, and particularly as the first and only Magistrate in Nassau County for the past three years, certainly demonstrate that she possesses all the required attributes to be the next Nassau County Judge.
Who is Jan Carver?
When Carver moved from Connecticut to Nassau County 30 years ago with her husband (Tony) and their two young sons, both Tony and Jan worked in the medical field, Jan as a Nurse Practitioner and Tony as the Director of Quality Improvement for Baptist Medical System. She was focused on family, helping her sons adjust to a new environment, and continuing in her career as a Nurse Practitioner.
As she continued her career and interest in the healthcare field, she learned how much the community needed more care options for older people. A pioneer in Nassau County, in 1997 she built, developed and managed The Jane Adams Assisted Living Community, named after her mother who died of breast cancer in 1986.
The first assisted living facility in Nassau County, “The Jane” served 32 clients with a home-like atmosphere to ensure residents were cared for as a family, in as comfortable an environment as possible. “I didn’t know then how much Nassau County would grow on me, become my community, my county and my home. I look back now and realize, I was on this path all along.”
Always eager to serve the community, she didn’t stop there. She attended Florida Coastal School of Law, graduating with her Juris Doctor in the first graduating class in 1999. She began working as an attorney with Clyde Davis and she went on several years later to have her own practice, specializing in Elder Law. She attended Stetson University College of Law, where she earned her post-doctorate degree in Elder Law, (an LL.M.), in 2008, graduating with honors. She became Board-certified with the Florida Bar in the field of Elder Law in 2008.
Sadly, she and her boys were struck with tragedy when her beloved Tony suddenly died of a heart attack in 2000. Without warning, Jan was a young widow and a single parent of two teenage boys. “Those were difficult times, but we managed to get through it all.” Carver says.
Carver has a long list of volunteer experiences, including serving as board member and then board chair of the Nassau County Council on Aging, assisting with the development of Micah’s Place and serving as a board member, teaching in the Justice Teaching program at two of our local middle schools and high schools, and volunteering as a Nurse Practitioner at the medical clinic sponsored by Barnabas. Jan is also a member of the Nassau County Bar Association and currently serves as the president of the Robert M. Foster Inn of Court, an organization she’s worked with for 10 years. She is often asked to speak at meetings at various community organizations, for example, the Council on Aging, Newcomer’s Club, the Plantation Ladies Club, the support group for the hearing impaired, and Rayonier.
Carver is so grateful she was able to continue her education by going to law school, thereby broadening her knowledge and skills, which provided her with a deeper capacity to serve the citizens of Nassau County. Nearly three years ago, Carver was appointed to serve as Nassau County’s first magistrate. In her role as Magistrate, she currently presides over five courts:
· Marchman Court (a civil court that deals with individuals with substance misuse problems);
· Mental Health Court (a criminal court where the individual has been referred from felony or misdemeanor court);
· Dependency Court (a court that deals with situations where children are removed from the care of their parents);
· Family Court (a court that handles divorces, child support claims, name change, petitions post-judgment, with mostly unrepresented litigants); and
· Civil Traffic Court.
The work of a magistrate is challenging and complicated, much like the work of a judge.
“Dealing with individuals who are burdened with family problems, substance misuse issues, mental health issues, and those who have broken the law requires superior listening skills, a keen understanding of the law, and a strong belief that justice must be carried out. Additionally, in order to attempt to reduce the number of individuals coming through our ‘revolving door,’ where individuals are in and out of the justice system, I have had to call upon my sense of ‘practical compassion’ and comprehensive knowledge of the services and resources available in the County in order to help individuals who appear in my Court to find treatment for their issues, work, counseling, medical needs, sometimes a place to sleep, and a strategic plan to be able to return as a healthy, productive citizen in our county…all the time balancing that with the responsibility to protect the safety and interests of the public,” Carver says.
Why is Carver running?
Jan Carver has been passionately dedicated to serving the people of Nassau County as a Nurse Practitioner, an assisted living community owner, in a variety of volunteer roles, as an elder law attorney, and in particular, as Nassau County’s Magistrate. She has an established, impressive, and well-known record of commitment to Nassau County. And, all along the way, Carver has acquired a wide span of knowledge about the County, the people of the County, the needs of our citizens, and the services available to those who appear before her in court.
“Each day, I deal with the rigors of presiding over difficult and convoluted cases in Nassau County. I have a passion for the law, I am passionate about the betterment of our citizens and our community, and I believe that justice belongs to all.”
Jan Carver is the right choice to serve each of us as Nassau County’s next County Judge.