The Tenth Judicial Circuit has found its solution to the "Year 2000" problem:
County Judge Anne Kaylor. That of course, is a bit of hyperbole but Judge Kaylor has
developed for the citizens of the 10th Judicial Circuit and for many others, an Internet
presence that reflects well on us. Thousands of visitors have found their way to the web
site and many return to the site regularly for updated information.
If you can, go right now to the following address:
There you will find at first blush what appears to be an incongruous phenomenon: in the
most modern of settings (the edge of the Internet), a picture of the Polk County historic
courthouse. From that root, you will find links to treasure troves of information.
Along the way, you will encounter messages from officials of the Court, bios of the
Judges, phone numbers for the court and law enforcement agencies in the circuit, and all
of the administrative orders. The site includes colorful graphics, photographs, a memoriam
to Judge Langston, tunes, jokes, links to other courts' resources, and at least one
reference to a group called "Gators."
favorite project is the site that she and Judge Michael Raiden are developing on Florida's Historic Courthouses. All of that
history and all of those stops are linked to each and every other page. You will also find
the latest 2nd DCA opinions which Judge Kaylor publishes the same day they are sent to the
The Internet site "is a service to the people we work for," Judge Kaylor said.
"If we don't provide that, we'll fall behind." More and more,
people look to the "Net" for information and expect to find the judicial
circuits using the latest technologies, she explained. "Even my 90-year old
mother is on the net!" she said.
Judge Kaylor pushes for the technology people expect, and those they have yet to know what
they should expect. "There is no reason not to have the latest
technology." She is encouraging the 10th Circuit to develop its own intranet,
taking advantage of the fiber optics lines which were installed when the courthouse was
renovated, and is actively promoting eventual videoconferencing.
Arraignments of persons arrested who are entitled to a speedy "first appearance"
before a judge to determine bail could be handled by videoconferencing from the jail, thus
saving the cost of transportation and extra security, plus the eventuality of being able
to conduct other court-related activities, such as depositions and even testimony from
witnesses who might have difficulty appearing physically in court.
The judicial website springs from the persona of Anne Kaylor. Like the site, she provides
humor and color, substantive appreciation of history, indispensable public service, all
Anne Kaylor soaks up diverse subjects and deploys this knowledge in ways that even she may
not realize.She was raised in orphanages and foster homes until she was adopted at the age
of nine by a family in Indialantic. She graduated from the Northampton School for Girls in Massachusetts and
attended Russell Sage College in
Troy, N.Y. Then, that Gator place, the University
of Florida, trapped her until 1965, when she received her B.A. degree in History and
English. In 1971, Judge Kaylor earned a masters in Guidance and Counseling from Rollins College and then proceeded to
complete the requirements to be certified as a specialist in school psychology.
Her teaching experience encompassed serving as a reading specialist in Atlanta, teaching
sixth grade in Palm Beach, fourth grade and tenth grade English in Winter Haven, and
serving as an area wide School Psychologist for the Polk County School Board until 1973,
when her youngest child was born.
If you think she completed her education when she earned her law degree from Stetson College of Law in 1978, you
are overlooking chapters of self-teaching and on-the-job learning at warp speed. She was
also a Real Estate Broker and the owner of three restaurants in Polk County.
Before beginning service as a judge, Anne Kaylor served as Assistant Public Defender in
the 10th Judicial Circuit (1978-1981) and in private practice in the areas of criminal and
family law. (1981-1990). In 1990, she was elected to the Polk County bench as a County
Judge. She has served as judge for seven years, and was re-elected in 1994.
Kaylor currently serves as Administrative County Judge, having served in that capacity in
1995 as well. She has spent most of her judicial years in the cauldron of the Criminal
Division (1990-Dec.1996 and July 1997- Present), with the exception of an 18-month sojourn
in the Small Claims Division (Jan 1996 - July 1997). Judge Kaylor--the teacher--assisted
in teaching the course in Computer Technology at the Advanced Judicial College course in
May 1995. She is Vice-Chairman of the Technology Committee of the Florida Conference of County Judges,
and co-webmaster for that site as well. She continues to learn and to teach at any hour of
the day. It is not unusual to receive an electronic message from Judge Kaylor in the wee
hours of the morning.
She loves her role as county court judge. In that capacity, Kaylor observes "every
possible panoply of human life," from the "hysterically funny" things that
occur on a daily basis to the sad and dramatic. "I like where I am. I'm one of the
few who has no desire to move to Circuit Court. County Court is where most of our citizens
come into contact with the court system (other than for a dissolution of marriage) and I
feel that the experiences I've had in life provide me with a unique opportunity to relate
and understand the problems they face. I've been there, done that.......... got the scars
and T-Shirts to prove it!"
Kaylor compares what she and other judges in the criminal rotation do during "Rock
Week" to Sisyphus pushing a boulder uphill. "Rock Week" is comprised
of street arraignments in the morning and first appearance hearings, pre-trial release
motions, child support hearings for those people arrested because they are behind in their
child support, and jail arraignments in the afternoon. "We may see up to a thousand
people during that week. It is a long week and we feel drained by Friday afternoon,"
"In this job you can't satisfy everyone, including the lawyers, but I'm not there to
serve the lawyers, I'm there to serve the public. I do the best job I can to be fair to
Kaylor notes that many people expect judges to be different
from the rest of society. "Judges are not gods," Kaylor says.
"Everybody looks to the court to solve all their problems. We, of course, cannot do
that and so people often leave the court disgruntled. All we can do is follow the law and
try to be fair and compassionate in doing so, without abusing our power."
Her son, David, whom she swore into The Florida Bar,
recognizes his mother's fairness. David said he would not get any special treatment if he
had to appear before her, (which of course he is not allowed to do.) Her youngest
son Mathew is in law school following in the family tradition. Following another family
tradition, her daughter Deborah taught school in Polk County and is now busy raising her own children.
Anne's oldest son Jody, is a Captain in the US Army
serving in Bosnia.
Judge Kaylor truly is an original. (Her dress robe is cranberry colored, a muted
tone of her favorite hot pink.) She brings a historical perspective, love for
teaching, sense of service, and great color and vision to the court in a way no other
judge does. When speaking of herself she says: "I'm a survivor!".