7 hours ago

VoteVan4Judge

Giving back to his community isn't something Mark Van Valkenburgh started to do when he decided to run for Circuit Judge, Group 39. For the past 25 years he has been deeply involved in many groups and endeavors. Vote Early or by Mail - #votevan4judge ...

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10 hours ago

VoteVan4Judge

Team #votevan4judge is out in force today at Early Voting locations all over Orange and Osceola counties. Give them a honk of appreciation if you see them after VOTING for Mark L. Van Valkenburgh for Circuit Judge, Group 39 ...

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13 hours ago

VoteVan4Judge

Good morning Orange and Osceola County Early Voters! As you go to vote today remember to "Mark" you ballot for the candidate in Circuit Judge, Group 39 with the most experience in the courtroom - Mark Van Valkenburgh! #votevan4judge www.votevan4judge.com ...

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1 day ago

VoteVan4Judge

Still have your Vote By Mail ballot? Did you know you can securely drop it at any Early Voting location or take it right to the Supervisor of Elections Office? Let's Get Out the Vote for Mark L. Van Valkenburgh for Circuit Judge, Group 39. #votevan4judge.com ...

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2 days ago

VoteVan4Judge

As we head into the first weekend of Early Voting there is certainly one candidate that deserves your vote! Mark L. Van Valkenburgh for Circuit Judge, Group 39 #votevan4judge
#realexperience www.votevan4judge.com
...

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I am running for Circuit Judge of Orange and Osceola counties because I want to use my nearly 25 years of experience as a lawyer and a mediator to improve our community in a meaningful way. As an attorney and mediator and as a community volunteer, I am sometimes able to help a small number of people. Being a circuit judge, however, is a full-time service position with the potential to help others on a larger scale. Every day, in the criminal courts, circuit judges keep our community safe while protecting the constitutional rights of defendants and victims. Juvenile judges have opportunities to help children learn from mistakes and redirect them toward a more positive path. Family law judges help families put discord and division behind them so that they can productively move forward with their lives. Finally, civil law judges significantly aid the community in numerous ways from promptly resolving business disputes to allowing those injured by the negligence of others to seek necessary redress.

During the recent investiture of the most recently appointed Circuit Judge, the Chief Judge and other speakers emphasized the importance of humility in a judge. I could not agree more. While I am confident in my own knowledge and abilities, my years of experience have taught me that I am not always right and I am fully comfortable listening to and learning from others. Circuit judges are charged with following the law. They do not make it. As a Circuit Judge I will apply the law fairly and impartially. I promise to listen carefully to the arguments of lawyers and make every effort to ensure that all of my decisions are consistent with the law and applicable rules of procedure and evidence. Plaintiffs, defendants, and lawyers will be treated equally and with civility and respect.

I look forward to the challenge of working in different divisions as a circuit judge. While the majority of my legal experience has been on the civil side, I established a working knowledge of the rules of criminal procedure from four years working as General Counsel in the office of Robert Wesley, the Ninth Circuit Public Defender. I observed numerous criminal proceedings, organized and attended trainings on a multitude of criminal law topics, helped to train and develop the skills of interns and new criminal defense lawyers, and worked on criminal law related projects such as the increased use of juvenile civil citations advocated by the Public Defender and the League of Women Voters.

Much of my litigation work as an attorney has been in federal court where deadlines are rarely extended and cases are almost never continued. As a sole practitioner, without partners or associates to cover for or assist me, I developed the organizational skills necessary to work efficiently and to always be prepared. While I understand that sometimes delays are unavoidable, I promise that, as a judge, I will remain organized and work the necessary hours to effectively manage my docket while being prepared for each and every hearing, trial, and other proceeding.

I look forward to the opportunity to serve and respectfully ask for your vote on or before August 18, 2020.

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