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    Judge Frank Quesada


    © St. Petersburg Times, published April 28, 2001

    Two years ago, Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Frank Quesada sentenced a drug addict to 22 months in prison. He told the defendant to meet him for lunch upon his release, so Quesada could hear about his recovery from addiction.

    "We've got a date when you get out," the judge said.

    He wasn't kidding. That's vintage Quesada, a personable and witty judge who found himself something of a hero for right-to-life advocates when he ordered that doctors begin feeding Terri Schiavo again this week.

    "He's a gutsy judge who's known as an independent thinker," said Clearwater attorney Denis de Vlaming.

    Quesada, 53, is a Tampa native whose grandparents came to the United States from Spain in the 1920s after fleeing the revolution in that country.

    After graduating from Stetson University College of Law, Quesada worked as a prosecutor for four years before beginning a successful private practice. He was appointed circuit judge in 1993.

    Quesada is a Roman Catholic whose mother was a homemaker. His father was a Navy veteran who also worked as a waiter and cook at the Columbia Restaurant in Ybor City, and then as a baker.

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