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Ex-Judge Candidate Josh Davis Resigns Clerk of Court Post to Start His Own Palm Coast Law Firm

| October 2, 2013

Josh Davis. (© FlaglerLive)

Josh Davis. (© FlaglerLive)

Josh Davis, a former assistant state prosecutor and candidate for county judge, has resigned as manager of criminal courts for Flagler County Clerk of Courts Gail Wadsworth and will soon be opening his own legal practice in Palm Coast.

Davis, 36, was one of seven candidates for the judgeship, a race eventually won by Melissa Moore Stens. Davis had held the $50,000-a-year position roughly six months, taking it shortly after his bid for the judgeship, and after resigning his post as assistant state attorney, where he specialized in felony and juvenile trial cases, and was a felony intake attorney.

When he took the job Wadsworth offered, it appeared that Davis could be in line for higher office there, assuming the lines of succession were to follow their presumed course: Wadsworth will not be running again, and it is widely presumed that her deputy, Tom Bexley, will run to replace her, opening his position (assuming he wins).

“That kind of exposure and his education could have lifted him possibly to a manager of all court types,” Wadsworth said of Davis, “or we used to have a position called director of courts that we don’t have anymore, because criminal court is so different from civil court, but that’s up to my successor.”

“I wanted to give it a shot because I really like Tom, and I like Gail,” Davis said. “It sounded like something that could turn into something, but as my employment grew longer it turns out that if you’re a deputy clerk, you’re actually prevented from practicing law.”

Gail Wadsworth. (© FlaglerLive)

Gail Wadsworth. (© FlaglerLive)

And in the end, that’s what Davis wants to do. “The longer I was there the more I realized I went to law school to be an attorney.” Davis holds a law degree from Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University.

He resigned on Friday with a brief note to Wadsworth.

“Awesome young man,” Wadsworth said of Davis Tuesday. “I just think somebody who has practiced law and stood in front of a bench would much rather be the attorney than be the person prepping for attorneys. He was an asset, but you have to follow your own heart, and I wondered if that wouldn’t come. I think it was very difficult for him not to be the attorney but be in a clerk’s role. Because a clerk can’t give any form of legal advice.”

Wadsworth recalled a time at the beginning of Davis’s tenure when she checked with the legal counsel for the clerks’ association in Tallahassee whether her employees could practice law. The verdict was a strict No. “And I watched Josh’s face fall when he heard that,” Wadsworth said. Asked if that led to any tensions on the job, Wadsworth said: “I don’t know, he didn’t say so, OI hope not. I thought I had a really good relationship with Josh,” but. The clerk added, she knew that at some point he would be missing practicing law.


Wadsworth has been working on the position’s job description—the job oversees the functions of criminal court clerks—and will be posting it later this week.

Davis himself has been at work setting up his own firm., which will be called Davis Law. Before his tenure at the State Attorney’s Office, Davis was an assistant public defender, and has also been a senior attorney in the guardian ad litem program—which protects the rights of children—where he became familiar with family law. He is married and is father to three young girls.

“I’ve yet to be able to hand out a card and say this is me, I can help you out, I can treat you like a person and help you with any problem you have, and if you need help you can give me a call,” Davis said of his coming career as an independent attorney. “I am terrified and just extremely excited all wrapped into one because I’ve always wanted to do this, and now the stars have just kind of aligned.”

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7 Responses for “Ex-Judge Candidate Josh Davis Resigns Clerk of Court Post to Start His Own Palm Coast Law Firm”

  1. FlaglerConcernedCitizen2 says:

    Good Luck Scott You have amazing talents along with unquestioned professionalism. You will an asset to the Flagler County Community

  2. Roadrunner says:

    Hand Wadsworth a napkin so she can wipe her mouth. This man is being gracious. Don’t believe everything you read. I wish you the best Josh….you should have checked with some of the other 147 former employees Of Wadsworth before ever leaving the States Attorneys Office to work for Wadsworth.

    I bet Wadsworth intends to be Bexley’s consultant or advisor continuing to make a big fat pay check should Bexley get elected in 2016. There should be no need for such a position since Bexley was hand picked (with no experience) by Wadsworth, and will have several years experience working in his capacity before Wadsworth leaves office. I would like see FL post was Bexley’s rate of pay was when he was hired, and what it is today….I think we ax payers will be shocked! Bexley replaced Phil Pulliam, Wadsworth’s then right hand that helped mastermind the 5-1/2 million dollar mismanagement a few years past.

  3. Ambroz says:

    I think his law firm will be very successful. I briefly met Mr. and Mrs. Davis at a Flagler Bar Association gathering and he’s a real gentleman. Best wishes.

  4. Go Josh Go! says:

    Good luck to you Josh. All things happen for a reason. Now you can take the leap and prove yourself. I wish you much success! Experiences make all of us wiser.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Josh,
    I hope the lesson you learned by taking a bite of Wadsworth’s poison apple taught you a valuable lessons. 1-if it sounds too good to be true it probably is and #2 most importantly, treat others how you would want to be treated.

    I wish you much success, and am sorry you had to suffer from the megalomania.

  6. Louise says:

    I hope one day Josh you will co e clean and tell the truth about your experience in dealing with his woman. She isn’t fooling anyone, and neither are you. Those that know her, can tell you she isn’t fooling anyone and she is very calculating. She had the race for Clerk closed in 2012 to prevent the Democrats and Non Party voters from voting against her by voting for Ken Mazzie. Best of luck to you, you have always been a gentleman, and didn’t deserve to be Wadsworths next victim.

  7. Nikia says:

    Best Of Luck Josh.

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