Melissa Nelson took office as the State Attorney for Florida’s Fourth Judicial Circuit in January 2017. There, she leads 300 plus attorneys, staff, and investigators in their pursuit of justice. In 1997, Nelson started her career as an Assistant State Attorney and for the next 12 years prosecuted cases ranging from misdemeanors to capital homicides. From 2009-2016, she worked at the international law firm of McGuireWoods.
She established Florida’s first Conviction Integrity Review unit, developed a driver’s license restoration program, convened the Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee aimed at reducing juvenile recidivism, and engaged the office in an academic research study focused on making data-driven decisions. Nelson earned both her undergraduate and law degrees with honors from the University of Florida.