LEONARD S. VILLAFRANCO, Esq.

lenny219th Circuit Judicial Candidate; Leonard S. Villafranco received his Bachelors of Science degree in Education from the State University of New York at Oswego in May 1982. After he completed his undergraduate studies, Mr. Villafranco taught junior and senior high school students the industrial arts at Minerva Central School in Olmstedville, New York. He went on to practice the industrial arts in the printing, publishing and advertising business, working as an Account Executive with William Graphics, Inc., an advertising and graphic arts agency located in Hauppauge, New York. After moving to Florida in 1985, Mr. Villafranco continued his professional career in printing and publishing, working at the very well known, Miami, Florida based Franklin Press, Inc. There he oversaw complete graphic and print production of publications, annual reports, brochures and other printed material for advertising, retail, travel and other professional business clients.

During a successful, non-legal career, Mr. Villafranco fulfilled his lifelong dream by studying law in the evenings while working full time and raising his children as a single father. He received his Juris Doctor degree from Nova Southeastern University, Shepard Broad Law Center in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida in 2001. There he had the opportunity to attend the Alternative Dispute Resolution Clinic where he accepted the concept that many parties may and should settle their disputes short of prolonged and costly litigation.

After law school, Leonard S. Villafranco began his legal career as an Associate Attorney with the law firm of Rozelle & Call, PA in 2002, and Flanagan, Maniotis & Berger, PA, each of West Palm Beach, Florida. There he gained valuable litigation experience defending litigants involved in serious accidents, product liability and wrongful deaths cases. In 2004, Mr. Villafranco opened his own law practice, Leonard S. Villafranco, PA, and recently merged with attorney Francisco J. Garcia, Esq. to form the law firm of Villafranco & Garcia, PLLC. He is an experienced trial attorney, fighting for families going through divorce, custody and property disputes, defending the rights of those accused of crimes, litigating business disputes and now prosecuting for litigants injured in serious accident, product liability and wrongful death cases.

Leonard S. Villafranco was admitted to the Florida Bar in 2002 and to the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida in 2011. He is an active member of the St. Lucie County Bar Association, the Martin County Bar Association and the Port St. Lucie Bar Association where he served as President in 2009/2010 and Vice President in 2008/2009. He is a proud recipient of Recognition for Exceptional Pro Bono Service by the Florida Supreme Court, Florida Pro Bono Services Coordination Association in 2012, the Pro Bono Service Award given by Florida Rural Legal Services for 2009/2010, and the Business & Industry Appreciation Award/Expansion Award by the St. Lucie County Chamber of Commerce in 2006.

Leonard S. Villafranco gives back to his community by serving on the board of directors for M.I.S.S. Inc. of the Treasure Coast, Stuart, Florida in 2013. Mother’s and Infants Striving for Success (M.I.S.S.) is a non-profit organization providing housing and support services to single women who are homeless with children. Mr. Villafranco also serves as Chairman of the Park Committee for M.I.S.S. Inc. of the Treasure Coast, insuring that these children have a safe place to play. Mr. Villafranco is also very active with St. Bernadette’s Catholic Church in St. Lucie West, where he is a Lector and serves on the major capital campaign committee. He also supports the Sunrise Theatre in Ft. Pierce, Florida as a Friend Member. In 1995 and 1996, he also served as a voluntary President for the Parkwood VI Homeowner’s Association in Coconut Creek, Florida.

Leonard S. Villafranco resides in St. Lucie West with his Wife, Tonya Villafranco and step-daughter Mary Elizabeth Carota. He is a proud father of his three children, Nancy Elizabeth Sulzer, Michael Andrew Villafranco & Brittany Rose Villafranco, and his grandchildren, Olivia Patricia Sulzer & Logan Dennis Sulzer.