Charles M. Harris, Senior
Judge of the Fifth District Court of Appeal, was a member
of the appellate court from 1989 to 2003. He was chief judge of the Fifth District Court of Appeal
from 1993 to 1995. He was president of the Conference of District Court of Appeal Judges
from 1995 to 1996.
Judge Harris, married and the father of four, is a native of Arkansas. He received
his undergraduate degree "With Honors" from the College of the Ozarks, a liberal arts
college in Clarksville, Arkansas. He received his law degree from the University of Florida,
where he was in the top ten percent of his graduating class.
Judge Harris practiced law for twenty years in Titusville as a partner in the Crofton,
Holland, Starling, Harris & Severs law firm until 1984. From 1984 until 1989, Judge Harris
was on the circuit court bench of the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit and served a term as Chief
Judge. He was appointed to the Fifth District in November of 1989 and retired
in January of 2003.
Judge Harris' bench and bar activities over the years have included two terms on
the Board of Directors of the Brevard County Bar, Director of Central Florida Legal
Services, Inc., service for three years as a prosecutor for Florida Bar grievance matters,
and active participation with the Florida Conference of Circuit Judges. He also participated
in the activities of the National Appellate Chief Judges Conference and was a presenter
at the conference in 1995. Judge Harris was invited to participate in the 1995 Reubin O.
D. Askew Institute on Politics and Society program on searching for unity in a diverse state,
the 1995 Roscoe Pound Foundation Forum on the long-range plan for the Federal Courts,
and the 1996 Reubin O. D. Askew Institute on Politics and Society program concerning the
citizens expectation from government in the 21st Century.
Judge Harris' civic and social activities include coaching Pop Warner football and
serving as a director and president of the North Brevard YMCA, as a member of the Florida
Theater Restoration Committee, and as president of his church's mens' group. Judge
Harris was twice awarded the North Brevard YMCA Service Award.