Meredith Crawford

Attorney at Law

Ms. Meredith D. Crawford, a graduate from the University of Mississippi School of Law, is a board-certified specialist in City, County and Local Government Law (B.C.S.) and a certified land planner (AICP). Her practice is concentrated primarily on community association planning, North Florida local government administration and land use litigation. Before joining Wade, Palmer & Shoemaker, Meredith was an attorney for the Escambia County Board of County Commissioners where Ms. Crawford successfully litigated on behalf of the County in state court and before administrative agencies to include the Florida State Retirement Commission, Department of Economic Opportunity and the Division of Administrative Hearings. While with the County, Meredith was general counsel to the Escambia County Planning Board, the Escambia County Supervisor of Elections, the Escambia County Disability Awareness Committee and the Escambia County Canvassing Board. Ms. Crawford routinely provided advice to the County Administrator and County Department Directors and staff and prepared ordinances, resolutions, memoranda and legal instruments on behalf of the local government. Ms. Crawford represented the Escambia County Administration before the Escambia County Board of Adjustment, Escambia County Merit System Protection Board, Escambia County Special Magistrate Code Enforcement Proceedings, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Florida Commission on Human Relations. Ms. Crawford served as trial counsel for the Escambia County Animal Control Department in animal cruelty cases before the County Court.

Before her work in local government, Ms. Crawford was a senior attorney with the State of Florida Department of Children and Families, Children's Legal Services, where she was lead trial counsel representing the State in dependency litigation. Meredith began her legal career in Florida as an assistant public defender where she tried over 30 felony jury cases to verdict with many resulting in acquittals or convictions of lesser included offenses. Meredith's criminal defense work also included a successful motion practice resulting in dismissal of charges ranging from assault with a deadly weapon to trafficking in controlled substances based on unlawful search and seizure or other constitutional violations. All combined, Ms. Crawford has a thirteen-year track record of over 100 successfully and fully litigated final orders, judgments and verdicts.

Ms. Crawford graduated summa cum laude with three Bachelor of Arts degrees in Political Science, Spanish & History, and a minor in psychology from the University of Mobile in Mobile, Alabama.

Distinctions, Appointments, and Bar Activities

  • Florida Bar, 2007
  • Mississippi Bar, 2006
  • Board Certified City, County & Local Government Attorney, 2019
  • Federal Bar, Northern District of Florida, 2018
  • Escambia Santa Rosa Bar Association
  • City County & Local Government Law Section, Florida Bar, 2015 - present
  • Environmental & Land Use Section, Florida Bar, 2016 - present
  • Labor & Employment Section, Florida Bar, 2016 - present
  • American Planning Association
  • Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association
  • Emerald Coast Planning Association
  • Gulf Coast Citizens Diplomacy Council
  • AMIKids Pensacola Board of Trustees, 2019 - present
  • Perdido Bay Golf & Country Club Homeowner’s Association Board of Trustees, 2018 - present

Noteworthy Cases

  • State of Florida Department of Environmental Protection and Escambia County, Florida v. South Palafox Properties, LLC. Escambia County Circuit Court Case Nos. 2014 CA 001611 and 2015 CA 000638; Appeal of Code Enforcement Determination and Request for injunctive relief due to ongoing environmental violations. Case resulted in closure of the Rolling Hills Construction and Demolition Debris (landfill) facility in Pensacola, Florida.
  • Eager Beaver Professional Tree Care, LLC v. Escambia County Board of County Commissioners, Case No. 2017 CA 000030, Defense of Writ of Certiorari against the County based upon the County's denial of an application for conditional use approval and issuance of an operational permit for a land clearing debris and yard trash permit.
  • Daniel J. Smillie v. State of Florida Department of Management Services and Escambia County, Case No. R14-28255-PEN. Successful defense of County's denial of Petitioner's request for classification as special risk for retirement purposes.

Significant Matters

  • Advised Escambia County regarding the Leave No Trace Ordinance, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2015-29
  • Advised Escambia County regarding zoning for Low-THC Cannabis facilities as a permitted use, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2017-05
  • Advised Escambia County re: creation of criteria for consideration in addressing parcels wishing to opt-out of the Escambia County Midwest Optional Sector Plan, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2017-14
  • Advised Escambia County on an expanded public notification requirement for certain land use decisions, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2017-15
  • Advised Escambia County on dog friendly dining regulations, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2017-43
  • Advised Escambia County on amending its Code to address the State requirements related to airport hazard, airport obstruction notification zones and runway protection zones, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2017-51
  • Advised Escambia County on opting a parcel out of the Mid-West Optional Sector Plan, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2017-53
  • Advised Escambia County on the consistency of parcels zoned Heavy Commercial, Light Industrial (HC/LI) when located within an Mixed-Use Suburban (MU-S) Future Land Use Category, Escambia County Ordinance No. 2017-65
  • Advised Escambia County on adoption of a content neutral sign code in the wake of Reed v. Town of Gilbert Arizona. Reed v. Town of Gilbert, Arizona, et al., 135 S.Ct. 2218 (Fla. 2015), Escambia County Ordinance No. 2018-18
  • Advised Escambia County regarding execution of an interlocal agreement for Airport Hazard and Incompatible Land Use Zoning, pursuant to Chapter 333, Florida Statutes, between Escambia County, Florida and the City of Pensacola, Florida

Distinctions, Memberships and Bar Activities

  • Florida Bar, 2007
  • Mississippi Bar, 2006
  • Board Certified City, County & Local Government Attorney, 2019
  • Federal Bar, Northern District of Florida, 2018
  • Escambia Santa Rosa Bar Association
  • City County & Local Government Law Section, Florida Bar, 2015 - present
  • Environmental & Land Use Section, Florida Bar, 2016 - present
  • Labor & Employment Section, Florida Bar, 2016 - present
  • American Planning Association
  • Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association
  • Emerald Coast Planning Association
  • Gulf Coast Citizens Diplomacy Council
  • AMIKids Pensacola Board of Trustees, 2019 - present
  • Perdido Bay Golf & Country Club Homeowner’s Association Board of Trustees, 2018 - present

Presentations / Public Meetings

  • The Sunshine Law and Open Government,@ Escambia County Health Benefits Committee, May 7, 2015
  • Sunshine Law Update,@ Escambia County Marine Advisory Committee, May 11, 2015
  • Local Government in the Sunshine,@ Escambia County Building Inspections Department Inspections Fund Advisory Board, October 20, 2015
  • Local Government in the Sunshine,@ Escambia County Disability Awareness Committee, October 21, 2015
  • Open Government: The Sunshine Law,@ Escambia County Board of Electrical Examiners, November 19, 2015
  • The Sunshine and Public Records Law,@ Escambia County Disability Awareness Committee, January 20, 2016
  • Open Government: The Sunshine Law,@ Escambia County Board of Electrical Examiners, January 20, 2016
  • Air Installation Compatible Use Zone (AICUZ) Planning,@ Escambia County Town Hall Meeting, October 10, 2016 and October 17, 2016
  • Eager Beaver,@ Escambia County Town Hall Meeting, October 13, 2016
  • Escambia County Optional Sector Plan,@ Escambia County Town Hall Meeting, January 23, 2017
  • Sunbelt Recycling and Materials Processing Facilities,@ Escambia County Town Hall Meeting, April 2, 2017
  • Transparency in Florida Government: Sunshine and Public Records@ Escambia County Disability Awareness Committee, April 18, 2017
  • Shortleaf Borrow Pit and Solid Waste Processing Permit Request Procedures,@ Escambia County Town Hall Meeting, October 12, 2017
  • Florida Local Government under The Sunshine Law and Public Records Act@ Escambia County Design Standards Manual Committee, November 1, 2017
  • Quasi-Judicial and Legislative Hearings, the Sunshine Law and Public Records Act@ Escambia County Planning Board, November 7, 2017
  • Delta Contractors and Concrete Crushing Facilities,@ Escambia County Town Hall Meeting, January 23, 2018
  • Nature Path to Big Lagoon,@ Joint Town Hall Meeting with the Department of Environmental Protection, June 18, 2018
  • Tiny Tim: Zoning for a Pony,@ Escambia County Town Hall Meeting, July 26, 2018
  • Sunshine Law Update@ Escambia County Disability Awareness Committee, January 16, 2019
  • Open Government: Quasi-Judicial Process, Sunshine Law and Public Records Act,@ Gulf Coast Citizen Diplomacy Council delegation from - February 21, 2019
  • Quasi-Judicial and Legislative Hearings, the Sunshine Law and Public Records Act@ Escambia County Planning Board, April 2, 2019
  • Ensuring Local Government Transparency: An attorney's perspective on the law and local politics in Florida.@ Gulf Coast Citizen Diplomacy Council delegation from - August 13, 2019
  • Bay Area Resource Council Presentation
  • Be Ready Alliance Coordinating for Emergencies