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Courthouse Renaming Committee celebrates Judge Stephan Mickle’s legacy through a scholarship contest

Courthouse Renaming Committee celebrates Judge Stephan Mickle’s legacy through a scholarship contest
Published: Dec. 3, 2021 at 6:36 PM EST
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - Students will play a part in an upcoming ceremony meant to honor the late Judge Stephan Mickle.


A scholarship in Mickle’s name is meant to engage middle and high schoolers to learn about his legacy.
 Students can write 150-word essays and poems about Mickle’s life and what it means to them.

Top winners will be rewarded with $200 and second-place winners will receive $100, but that is not all: Two students will be selected to speak at the January 14 renaming at the courthouse, according to the committee’s co-chair, Tarcha Rentz.

Judge Stephan Mickle was the first black county, circuit, district, and chief justice in Alachua County.



“This man lived in their community, [East Gainesville], and was able to accomplish so many things,” said Rentz, “and sometimes the walk that you have to take in life is a lonely walk, sometimes it’s a courageous walk, and thankfully, he was able to endure and he can be a model,” Rentz said.

Rentz said that the initiative seeks to prove that renaming the Alachua County Criminal Courthouse serves a purpose beyond honoring the late judge.

“We’re excited to see what the young people come up with,” Rentz said.



The deadline to participate is December 15, and winners will be published in early January.

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