Thomas Gallen

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Thomas “Tom” Gallen, Jr.
Florida House of Representatives
In office
Florida Senate
In office
Personal details
Born (1932-12-28) December 28, 1932 (age 84)
Tampa, Florida
Political party Democrat
Alma mater Florida State University, University of Florida
Occupation Judge
Military service
Service/branch Army
Years of service 1952-1955

Thomas “Tom” Gallen, Jr. (born December 28, 1932) is a retired Florida State legislator and Circuit Judge.

Early life and education[edit]

Gallen was born in Tampa, Florida in 1932.[1] He attended the University of Tampa, leaving during the Korean War in order to enlist in the Army Special Forces.[2] He was a member of the inaugural group of Green Berets formed in 1952 and deployed to Bad Tolz, Germany in 1953, serving until 1955.[1][3] After leaving the army he returned to school, receiving a BS in Business Administration from Florida State University and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Florida.[4] Gallen's father, Thomas Gallen, Sr., had been a lawyer as well, practicing for only a few months before the Great Depression, then leaving law, but Gallen Jr. was never made aware of this fact until after he graduated from law school.[2]

Legal Career and Public Service[edit]

Gallen was a law partner at the law firm of Miller Gallen Kaklis and Venable from 1960 to 1985.[5] During this period he also held public office, serving as a member of the Florida legislature for 12 years, first in the Florida House of Representatives, where he served from 1965-1972, before being elected to the Florida Senate.[6][7] During his time in the Senate, he became chairman of the Senate Rules and Calendar Committee.[8] He served in the Florida Senate from 1972-1978 before leaving office, opting to return to practicing law rather than seeking reelection.[9] In 1985, he was elected to the 12th Judicial Circuit as a Circuit Judge, where he was elected as Chief Judge in 1998, and served until he retired in 2002.[10] In 2005, Judge Gallen received the Manatee County Bar’s Lifetime Achievement Award.[11] He currently serves as a Senior Circuit Judge for the 12th Judicial Circuit and Associate Judge on the 2nd District Court of Appeals.[12][13] In 2009, he issued a legal opinion that lead to the release of James Bain, after DNA evidence was used to prove he was wrongfully convicted of rape after 35 years in prison.[14] In 2013, he was named to the Manatee County Rural Health Services Board of Directors.[15]


  1. ^ a b The State of Florida (1976). "The Florida Senate Yearbook - 1976-78" (PDF). 
  2. ^ a b Wendy Dahle (August 2, 1999). "Former Legislator Chosen As Chief". Sarasota Herald Tribune. Sarasota, FL. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  3. ^ Walter Powers (August 25, 1968). "Ex-Green Beret Sees End To Elite Fighting Force". Sarasota Herald Tribune. Sarasota, FL. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  4. ^ "Movers and Shakers: Judge Thomas Gallen Joins MCRH Board of Directors - - Free News for Bradenton, FL and Manatee County". Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  5. ^ Herald staff report. "Judge Thomas Gallen joins Manatee County Rural Health Board of Directors | Local News | Bradenton Herald". Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  6. ^ Wolfrum, Timothy R. (2010-08-26). "Cancer fight propelled commissioner-elect Gallen into politics | Top Stories | Bradenton Herald". Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  7. ^ "Tom Gallen Is Easy Winner In Manatee Senate Race". Sarasota Herald Tribune. Sarasota, FL. September 13, 1972. 
  8. ^ Jim Curtis (December 2, 1976). "Senator Gallen Can Use Influence To Benefit County". Sarasota Herald Tribune. Sarasota, FL. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  9. ^ Ed George and Russ Roberts (July 2, 1978). "Gallen Senate Seat Sought by Rep. Neal". Sarasota Herald Tribune. Sarasota, FL. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  10. ^ "Article: Manatee Bar Association honors Gallen, Williams.(B SECTION) | AccessMyLibrary - Promoting library advocacy". AccessMyLibrary. 2005-12-02. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  11. ^ "Legal Roundup". 2005-08-01. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  12. ^ "New Manatee County School District Superintendent Sworn In - - Free News for Bradenton, FL and Manatee County". Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  13. ^ Lakeland, FL. "Second District Court of Appeal" (PDF). Retrieved 5 April 2013. 
  14. ^ Ruger, Todd. "Judge meets man he helped to exonerate". Retrieved 2013-04-05. 
  15. ^ "Business People". Retrieved 2013-04-02.