Judges Survey 

Robert Griffin

Robert Griffin
Robert Griffin

District: County Judge

2010 Overall Legal Ability Communication Ability Written Decisions Professional Conduct
7.32 7.23 7.32 7.12 7.61

Fair; slow at times but likeable.

An excellent judge.

Doing good job.

Thinks too much of himself.

Another great one.

A disappointment - nice man but limited to a stiff and dehumanized ideology.

Motivated to learn the law. Controls the courtroom.

A really pleasant guy. All judges should take note. Works hard for non-lawyers to understand the legal process.

Good judge. Integrity.

Experienced in many areas of the law. He will be a good judge for many years.

Micromanages. Too slow.


County Judge Robert Griffin ranked seventh among Polk's 10 county judges with a 7.32, placing him squarely in the middle of his judicial colleagues.

Most lawyers responding to a Ledger survey were complimentary of Griffin's courtroom demeanor, giving him his highest individual rating of 7.61 in professional conduct and activities.

His lowest rating came in written decisions, where he scored 7.12.

One lawyer praised Griffin's patience with defendants in the courtroom.

'A really pleasant guy,' the lawyer wrote. 'All judges should take note. (Griffin) works hard for non-lawyers to understand the legal process.'

Griffin, 51, said many of those coming into County Court are representing themselves and don't understand the process.

'I view my job as helping these people understand what is happening,' he said. 'When they understand, they are better able to make an informed decision as to how to proceed. Sometimes, that takes a little time.'

Some lawyers criticized Griffin for his approach, saying he 'micromanages' and 'is slow at times.'

Griffin received his bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Central Florida and his law degree from Stetson University College of Law. He worked for the State Attorney's Office in Bartow for 10 years, and was in private practice for 11 years before he was elected to the bench in 2007.

He and is wife, Terry, have two daughters, Tiffany and Lauren, and a son, Tim. He lives in Lakeland.
District: County Judge

2008 Overall Legal Ability Communication Ability Written Decisions Professional Conduct
7.19 7.01 7.18 6.94 7.65

Robert Griffin

Very friendly and easy to work with; runs his court efficiently, if not as fast as other judges; generally fair and

has better legal knowledge than the average new judge.

A bit too far towards the state, but a fine judge.

A tremendous addition to the county bench; better than expected, though not a surprise.

A welcome addition; very polite.

Disappointed with his hard-headedness.

Good grasp of legal issues; tough on repeat offenders.

Pleasant judge; too harsh on unrepresented defendants; too strict.

Professional, calm, predictable.

Prompt and courteous; wants to follow the law and do the right thing; solid choice.

Surprisingly slow; indecisive in spite of his experience.

Very courteous, listens to all who have business in his court.

Very formal; needs seasoning on the bench.

Very professional; very complete record.


The Ledger

County Judge Rob Griffin received a mixture of praise and criticism for his first appearance on The Ledger's biennial survey of lawyers.

Griffin, who was elected in September 2006 to the county bench, is currently assigned to handle criminal cases.

He ranked sixth out of 10 county judges. His overall score was 7.19 out of 10. His highest individual category was 7.65 for professional conduct. His lowest score was 6.94 for written decisions.

Some lawyers described Griffin as being a "great young judge" and having "better legal knowledge than the average new judge."

"Prompt and courteous," one wrote. "Wants to follow the law and do the right thing. Solid choice."

"Good grasp of legal issues," another wrote. "Tough on repeat offenders."

But others criticized him for favoring the prosecution and being slow.

"Surprisingly slow, very indecisive in spite of his experience," one wrote.

Although he manages many cases, Griffin said he tries to take time to explain to defendants what is happening in their cases.

"What some might perceive as slow, I perceive as being thoughtful," he said.

Griffin, 49, served for about 10 years as an assistant state attorney in Bartow before going into private practice, handling family, criminal and juvenile cases.

Griffin graduated from the University of Central Florida in 1980 and from Stetson University College of Law in 1984.

His term expires in 2012.

He and his wife, Terry, have three children.

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