Published March 2012
By Walter “Casey” Jones, IV
When a request to write an article about County Judge Greg Keyser was made by the Judicial Relations Committee, I immediately volunteered. I met Greg 30 years ago when we were younger. I tried my first jury trial with Greg and will always remember his cool, calm demeanor and professionalism. It is the same today and is a real benefit to our bench here in Palm Beach County.
Greg was born in Arlington, VA and moved to Ft. Lauderdale at the age of 5. At 20, he moved to Delray Beach with his family. Greg graduated from Duke University with a BA in accounting and political science with honors. He went on to the University of Florida law school where he met his wife, Circuit Judge Janis Brustares Keyser. They returned to Palm Beach County after graduation. He started with the firm of MacMillian, Newet et al in Delray Beach. Shortly thereafter he heard the call for litigation and joined Paxton Crow, Bragg and Austin, now known as Paxton and Smith, doing primarily insurance and medical malpractice defense work. The Paxton firm has several alumni currently on the bench including 19th Circuit Judge Robert Hawley, Palm Beach Circuit Judge David Crow, Palm Beach County Judges Sandra Bosso Pardo and newly appointed County Judge Robert Panse. Greg went on to work at Sax, Sachs and Klein doing commercial litigation. He eventually joined his wife in practice at Gay, Ramsey and Warren, PA., which later merged with Billing, Cochran, Lyles, Mauro & Ramsey, P.A., primarily doing medical malpractice defense work before being appointed a County Judge.
Greg and Janis have two children, Mallory and Spencer. Spencer went to his mother’s alma mater, Florida State University, and Mallory went to the University of Florida. Both are following their parents into the legal field. Mallory, a Stetson University Law graduate, currently works as an assistant public defender in Pinellas County and Spencer just finished his first semester of law school at Nova University.
Greg was appointed to the County Judgeship by Governor Crist in December of 2010 and began working in the civil division at the main courthouse. In 2011 he was reassigned to the South County Courthouse hearing civil cases. He is truly humbled by the job and the responsibility that goes with it. The hardest part of the job is being told that when his wife presided in county civil she ruled differently than he does on matters before him.
The best part of the job is helping people with their problems in difficult times. He handles many eviction and collection cases and has many pro se defendants before him that have nowhere to turn due to the loss of a job, health issues etc. He tries to counsel them and do the best he can while respecting the law and legal rights of the opposing party. While some may say this is hard work, Greg finds it extremely rewarding and motivates him to do his job as best he can realizing that not everybody will be happy with the result.
Greg and Janis spend their free time exercising, playing tennis, golf with his son and visiting their daughter in St. Petersburg.
Greg currently is assigned to the South County Courthouse handling one of two civil divisions. He will also be assisting the Family Court Judges in south county hearing civil domestic violence Petitions and Hearings.
Greg has always had a very easygoing personality that serves him well in the courtroom. Greg has earned the respect of his peers who having nothing but praise for him as a Judge and as an attorney.