Assistant State Attorney Jonathan Olson
State Attorney’s Office:
[PHOTO CREDIT: Bonnie Whicher]
(This Article was First Published in LLN in August, 2015 — Issue No. 23.)
It wasn’t long before Assistant State Attorney Jonathan Olson knew that milking cows was not for him. “I grew up on a dairy farm on the northwest side of Minnesota. I grew up milking cows… and I was not a farmer. I knew that very early,” Olson reveals to Lake Legal News with a chuckle. “Farming was great, but it wasn’t for me.”
As early as the 8th grade, Olson explained his love of the law in a school assignment. “I’ve always wanted to be a lawyer,” Olson says, eyes shining. “I enjoy the argument.” “So I knew very early I wasn’t going to be a farmer,” he explains. Furthering his education first at St. Olaf College, where he would meet his wife, SaraJane, he later graduated law school from Valparaiso University School of Law and began his legal career as a judicial law clerk in Minnesota; then it was on to becoming an assistant county attorney where he was living at the time.
Olson married SaraJane—who is also currently a Lake County prosecutor—and they had a son, PaulJon (known as P.J.) and a daughter, Elizabeth. They chose to move to Florida where Olson’s family had vacationed since he was a young child. “My sisters moved down here right out of college,” Olson recalls. “My grandmother had a house down here and my family kind of fell in love with Florida.” It was a big step to move across the county and to have to take the Bar exam again. “We were the last holdouts,” Olson notes.
The couple chose Lake County for several reasons, the small-town feel, for starters. Community theater was the other draw. Olson and SaraJane have been active with Eustis’ Bay Street Players, Leesburg’s Melon Patch Players and Mount Dora’s Ice House Theatre since moving here in 2004. Olson accepted a position with State Attorney Brad King’s office and has prosecuted numerous felony cases including rapes, stabbings and vehicular manslaughter. “I love prosecuting, you really don’t know what you are going to get. I think I’ve seen it all and I realize I haven’t seen anything.” (He now serves as a felony docket supervisor, overseeing as many as 50 active cases at any given time.) What does the future hold for Olson? He wistfully responds to LLN by saying, “I’m always looking for other opportunities.”
Our Editor-in-Chief, Marilyn M. Aciego, began writing for Lake Legal News in 2010. In addition, she has made more than two dozen appearances on live national television, including Nancy Grace and the Greta Van Susteren show, along with her appearance on Evil Twins. Contact her with breaking news, tips, and feedback by sending an e-mail to 352Tips@gmail.com. You can also contact us on our Facebook page — and make sure you “Like” and “Follow us” there. [PHOTO CREDIT: Bonnie Whicher]