Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Group Goes Public to Back Candidate for Duval Bench

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Group Goes Public to Back Candidate for Duval Bench

Article excerpt

********** CORRECTION (5/16/98)

Because of an editing error, the name of Pauline M. Ingraham-

Drayton was misspelled in a Page A-1 photo caption yesterday.

**********

As Gov. Lawton Chiles considers who will be the next Duval

County judge, a group of black political and religious leaders

is mounting an effort to make his decision a historic one.

Pauline M. Ingraham-Drayton is one of five Jacksonville lawyers

who made the short list of nominees to be considered by Chiles

to replace County Judge June Blackburn, who retires in July.

Now, a group of black community leaders is publicly urging

Chiles to appoint Ingraham-Drayton to the judgeship. If he does,

she would be the first black woman on the bench in the 4th

Judicial Circuit, which consists of Duval, Nassau and Clay

counties.

Writing letters supporting judicial appointments isn't

uncommon, but going public with an effort to influence the

governor's decision is.

On Monday, at Ingraham-Drayton's request, the group canceled a

news conference it had scheduled to rally support for her, said

state Rep. Tony Hill, D-Jacksonville, one of the organizers.

"She just felt that may cause a little harm, in us coming out

like that, endorsing her in a press conference, so to speak,"

Hill said.

But the group still intends to mount a letter-writing and

telephone campaign, Hill said.

Yesterday, U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown of Jacksonville faxed a

statement to the Times-Union supporting Ingraham-Drayton, whom

Brown said she's known since her college days.

"Jacksonville has never had an African-American woman on the

County Court, and when you look at all of the problems our

community has had in our criminal justice system, it is clear to

me that we would truly benefit from Ms. …

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