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Caldwell (center) with daughter Mallory (left) and longtime business partner Melissa Hill in New York City

Caldwell serving as probate judge

By Michael Butler

Longtime Tallassee attorney Bonita Caldwell is serving in a different capacity these days - as probate judge in Tallapoosa County.

Caldwell recently announced that she would be closing her Tallassee law office; however, she will continue practicing law on a more limited basis. Caldwell and associate Melissa Hill have been running the local business for two decades.

"The decision to close the office came up on us about as quickly as it did on everybody else," Caldwell said. "We just decided that we both wanted to do something different."

The partnership with Caldwell and Hill has been more than a business relationship. The two are close friends.

"Melissa came in at 19-years-old crying because she needed a job. I said we'll figure out something."

Bonita with homecoming queen/daughter Mallory in 2014

Hill has taken a position with ASE Credit Union. Caldwell has accepted the probate judge's position in Dadeville on an interim basis.

"Judge (Tom) Young stepped in because Judge (Leon) Archer had taken medical leave," Caldwell noted. "I was asked to come in and fill in until the new probate judge was elected. I thought it would fill a little bit of a gap because I didn't know where I was heading."

Caldwell worked the recent primary election from the probate office and will handle the runoff in July and general election in November.

"As far as the probate work, I was pretty familiar with everything but the election side. I think it went pretty well."

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