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Selma native sworn in as Judge in Duval County

A Selma High School graduate made history this week in Florida.

Rhonda Peoples-Waters was sworn in as the first elected African-American female judge in Duval County, Florida.

Peoples-Waters was surrounded by her parents, Ronald and Winona Peoples, long-time Selma residents, at the ceremony.

A 1992 graduate of Selma High, Peoples-Waters has practiced law over the last 21 years in the areas of criminal, family, personal injury, civil and probate law. Since 2007, Peoples-Waters has operated her own private practice in Jacksonville, Florida.

Peoples-Waters’ role as judge will serve many functions. County judges handle misdemeanors, small-claims lawsuits, evictions, decide whether or not to release defendants awaiting trial. They also rotate between civil and criminal cases each week.

“I believe that judges are important parts of this community — servants of this community — and that’s what I will look forward to investing and participating in,” she said at the swearing-in ceremony.