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Meet Linette | Proven Leader with Integrity and a Heart for Service

Award-Winning Attorney | Hearing Officer | Trusted Servant Leader

Proven Track Record of Excelling in the Courtroom, Inspiring in the Classroom,

and Making a Difference in Our Community

Linette "Starr" Brookins is an award-winning first-generation lawyer, fourth generation Tampa native, and a true servant leader. Ms. Brookins' diverse and varied legal background equips her with the critical skillset to serve as a fair and equitable judge, for all. Our courtrooms are back logged, and we need a jurist who knows the courtroom inside and out, and who understands and respects the role of a Judge as being an interpreter of the law as it is - not as she wants it to be.

The courthouse has been Ms. Brookins' second home since she first started her legal career representing the state of Florida over 13 years ago.  Ms. Brookins has devoted her life and legal career to service. Prior to becoming an attorney, Ms. Brookins served as an Anti-Terrorism Dispatch Officer, helping those who dedicated their lives to protecting and serving our community.  She began her legal career in a prosecutorial role protecting our most vulnerable citizens - children.  She has worked as an Appellate Public Defender, she has practiced administrative law, and she currently practices civil law.  

Not only is Ms. Brookins a tried and true trial attorney, she also serves as a Hearing Officer with Hillsborough County where she is a neutral arbiter - presiding over cases and rendering decisions related to various ordinances.  Through her service as a Hearing Officer, she has ensured that everyone who appears before her is heard, and treated with respect. Having seen firsthand how the justice system can favor the fortunate and forget the fragile, Ms. Brookins has worked diligently to instill faith and confidence in the justice system by extending respect and humility to all who appear before her as a Hearing Officer and ensuring that they all feel heard, while also ensuring fidelity to the rule of law. 

Ms. Brookins is a seasoned attorney who has litigated in courtrooms across the state of Florida.  She has tried bench trials to judgment, has tried civil and criminal jury trials to verdict, and has presented oral argument before the Second District Court of Appeal. Ms. Brookins has represented the state of Florida, indigent individuals convicted of crimes, small businesses, large corporations, and everyday individuals. Ms. Brookins has prosecuted cases, and she has defended cases, at both the state and federal level. Ms. Brookins has also served on the Florida Bar's Code and Evidence Committee so not only is she familiar with the rules and procedures through practical and actual experience in Court; but, she has a higher understanding of these rules and procedures having had the opportunity to serve and engage with top litigators and jurists throughout the entire state.

Having been raised in a law enforcement and military family, Ms. Brookins developed an unwavering and significant respect for the rule of law early in her life. To Ms. Brookins, it is incredibly important that we preserve the integrity and legitimacy of our courts by ensuring that our Judges exercise humility and restraint, while ensuring that everyone is heard and treated with the utmost respect and fairness.   

Additionally, Ms. Brookins' pulse has remained on our community for over two decades, and she is a proven leader for all people - she chairs the Young Women of Promise Committee of The Athena Society; she is a volunteer judge with Teen Court (a juvenile delinquency diversionary program); she is an Educator with LEADS (a program devoted to teaching teenagers about having healthy relationships with themselves and others); she is currently the President-Elect of the Hillsborough Association for Women Lawyers; Vice President of the Guardian Ad Litem Foundation of Tampa Bay d/b/a Hero to a Child; a member of the University of Tampa Board of Counselors; a Board Member for The Regent and Tampa Tiger Bay Club; immediate former Chair of the Human Relations Board for Hillsborough County; a member of the Divine Nine Greek Family (Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.); she formerly served as the Historical Society Chair of the George Edgecomb Bar Association; and, she is also a Rotarian where Service over Self is the guiding principle.

Being a public servant is not just what Ms. Brookins does; but, it's who she is. Public service is in her blood. Ms. Brookins comes from a family of law and service - military members, law enforcement personnel, educators, and a handful of elected officials to include her mom, Dr. Sonja Brookins, who served as Hillsborough County's Soil and Water Supervisor, dedicated to helping Florida farmers and our agricultural community.

Ms. Brookins is a proud single mother to "Rae" (her daughter who spent the majority of her childhood in foster care prior to Linette adopting her at the age of 17), a proud auntie to her nieces, Mariah and Arriyanna, and her nephew, Jason, and a proud fur mom to her 2.5 year old Maltese, Franklyn Theodore.  Ms. Brookins enjoys running, Pilates, taking classes on her Peloton Bike+ (she was previously a certified Spinning Instructor), traveling, and spending time with her beloved family. 

Ms. Brookins has the right level of legal expertise and community engagement to continue her service as our next County Court Judge here in Hillsborough County. Guided by her devotion to public service, fidelity to the rule of law, and her faith, Ms. Brookins is ready to serve, and would be honored to earn your support, and your vote on or before August 20, 2024.   

"And, what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" Micah 6:8  

Linette's Contribution to the Bench - a win for us all! 

If provided with the great responsibility and honor of serving as a Judge, Linette would contribute the following:

(1) My significant and diverse litigation experience.  I have tried jury trials to verdict, at both the state and federal level.  I have also tried bench trials to judgment.  I am intimately familiar with how litigation works, and I am well versed as to the rules of evidence and procedure.  I have also served on the Florida Bar’s Code and Rules of Evidence Committee.  

(2) My ability to quickly learn, adapt, and thrive in new situations and environments.  My varied legal experience is demonstrative of how quickly I grasp new concepts, therein equipping me with the necessary skills to handle diverse, novel, and/or complicated cases, while processing a lot of information.

(3) My experience applying the facts to the law and making decisions as to whether legal sufficiency exists in order to make a particular decision is an invaluable skill that I acquired throughout my experience representing the state of Florida, as well as my role as a Hearing Officer. 

(4) My appellate experience in both criminal and civil law.  I have authored over 100 briefs and presented oral argument to the 2nd District Court of Appeal.  These experiences have made me an exceptional legal writer, strengthened my analytical skills, heightened my research skills, and ensured that I paid very close attention to every detail.

(5) My fidelity to the rule of law.  If given the opportunity to serve as a judge, I will not legislate from the bench or engineer outcomes merely because they comport with my beliefs or views.  Nor will I be swayed by any outside influence or the feelings/opinions that others might have.  My decisions will be in accordance with the law.  The necessity of upholding the rule of law, consistently and irrespective of social status, privilege, money, race, or sex, is paramount, and is something for which I have a very deep appreciation, particularly as the daughter of a retired military member, law enforcement officer, and teacher.    

(6) My prodigious preparation, irrespective of how “big” or “small” an issue presents itself as being.  Despite remaining involved within the Bar, voluntary bar associations, serving on boards, and holding leadership positions within the community, I have always shown up well prepared.  The extent of my high level of preparation has caused Judges to comment upon same in open court and has been verbally noted by opposing counsel on numerous occasions.  My detail-oriented skillset combined with my prodigious preparation has made me an extremely effective litigator and appellate attorney, and it will serve me well on the bench. 

(7) My dedication to serving my community.  I was raised on service, and I have devoted decades of my life to serving the community.  It is imperative that a judge remain active and give back to the community, while on the bench and after they retire from the bench.  My longstanding history of public service is demonstrative of my commitment to this wonderful community that is my home.

(8) My experience presiding over cases as a quasi-judicial officer.  I have had the opportunity to preside over pro se proceedings as a Hearing Officer with Hillsborough County, and I have presided over at least one hundred trials as a Volunteer Judge with Teen Court for the past 10 years.  I truly believe that these unique experiences have prepared me to serve as an efficient Judge and demonstrated the type of judicial arbiter that I would be – respectful, civil, prepared, and one who allows everyone to feel heard.  

(9) My temperament and demeanor, which has led to me specifically being tasked with working with difficult or challenging personalities.  I have a warm and welcoming, yet commanding, personality. I extend compassion and professionalism to all, and I am civil to everyone, irrespective of whether or not it is returned.  I am prepared to serve as a judge.  I am efficient, proficient, analytical, unbiased, respectful, intelligent, civil, decisive, and committed to public service. 

(10) My longstanding commitment to excellence has been evident in every task that I have undertaken, and this will continue should you elect me to serve as a judge.  Throughout my entire life, I have heard that I was aptly named.  That wasn’t by happenstance.  I have worked extraordinarily hard in order to thrive as a first-generation attorney.  My former partner, Karen Barnett, with whom I have tried numerous jury trials, has commented that during our trials (at both the state and federal level), the Judges undoubtedly look to me for guidance and assistance in issues that arose during trial.  This did not happen because I am some sort of Perry Mason lawyer.  Quite the contrary.  This happens, consistently, because I ensure that I am always the most prepared individual in every room that I enter, particularly every court room.  I am thrilled and humbled by the opportunity to bring that same level of dedication, commitment, excellence, and preparation to the bench.    





Committee of Responsible Persons to Elect Linette "Starr" Brookins, County Court Judge, Group 11, Nonpartisan.
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