Duval County

Jacksonville mayor selects new General Counsel appointee 1 week after Randy DeFoor withdraws

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jacksonville Mayor Donna Deegan has announced a new appointment for the city’s next General Counsel.

Deegan has selected Michael Fackler, who has “practiced law for nearly 20 years and is a partner at the established local law firm of Milam Howard Nicandri & Gillam P.A.,” according to a release from Deegan’s office.


Action News Jax told you in August when former Jacksonville City Councilwoman Randy DeFoor was appointed to be the next General Counsel by Deegan.

Last week, DeFoor withdrew her name from consideration amid pushback from the City Council.

“Michael is well respected in the legal profession and community. He brings to the table nearly two decades of legal experience, unimpeachable character, and bipartisan support,” Deegan said in the news release. “As our city continues to grow and our legal needs become more complex, I look forward to bringing him on board as our next General Counsel.”

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Fackler earned his undergraduate degree from Northwestern University in 1994, according to his online bio. In 2002, Fackler received his Juris Doctor Degree from University of Florida College of Law with high honors.

Fackler will be appointed as the Acting General Counsel starting on Friday, September 29, according to the release. The Qualifications Review Committee (QRC) will convene in October to review his qualifications, a process outlined in the City Charter.

Upon approval by the QRC, Fackler’s appointment will move to the City Council for approval to become the City’s permanent General Counsel. The term of Bob Rhodes, the current Interim General Counsel, ends on Thursday, September 28.

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Fackler released a statement Friday about his appointment:

“I’m honored to be joining the Deegan administration to lead the Office of General Counsel. In recent days, I’ve had the opportunity to meet with members of the administration, Council leadership, and a number of attorneys in the office. It’s gratifying to be tapped to lead this dynamic, talented law firm of city attorneys as we work to address the complex challenges facing Jacksonville at this time, along with managing the many opportunities we expect in the coming years.”

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