2002-09-28 / Columnists

Chatting With Chapey

Democrats Hold Judicial Convention
By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey

Democrats Hold Judicial Convention

On Thursday, September 19, the Queens Democratic Judicial Convention was convened at 6 PM.  The Convention was chaired by the Honorable Seymour Boyers.

I had the privilege of nominating Justice Charles J. Thomas to fill the first vacancy.  The nomination was seconded by Democratic District Leader Frank Galluscio and re-affirmed by Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer.

In my nominating speech, I made a point of the fact that Justice Charles J. Thomas earned his position the old-fashioned way - he worked for it.  He is intelligent, persistent, persevering and focused.  He is a person of impeccable taste - as we can tell from his charming, talented and beautiful wife, Lilane.  He and Lily have been excellent role models for their family and in the community.  Charles J. Thomas has an excellent judicial temperament and a keen and engaging sense of humor.

Charles J. Thomas has served with distinction as a Justice of the Supreme Court for the Eleventh Judicial District from 1989 through 1997 and is now in the Civic Part.  He was originally elected to the Civil Court in 1983.

Justice Thomas has an excellent educational background having graduated from Midwood High School, Brooklyn College and Brooklyn Law School.  He is well qualified and experienced.

It was my honor and privilege to nominate the Honorable Charles J. Thomas to continue his outstanding work in the Supreme Court.

The Judicial Convention also nominated three other very qualified individuals.  One was Peter J. Kelly who has served as a Civil Court Judge since January, 1999.  As a Judge of the Civil Court, Peter conducted numerous jury and non-jury trials involving negligence, contracts, commercial, landlord tenant and secured transactions.  Between 1992 and 1998 Peter was the Principal Law Clerk and Referee with the Honorable Justice Robert L. Naham in the Surrogate Court.  Previously he had served as the Principal Law Clerk to Justice Nahman in the New York State Supreme Court in Queens County.

The Honorable Thomas Manton, our distinguished Queens County Democratic Chairman nominated the Honorable Seymour Rotker to fill another vacancy.  Judge Rotker had served as an Assistant District Attorney in the Bronx from 1960 to 1978.  Since 1978 he has been appointed and reappointed as a Judge serving in the Criminal Court and the Supreme Court.  He has served as the Designating Supervising Judge of the Criminal Court in Queens County.

Judge Marguerite Grays was nominated by Councilman Thomas White.  He pointed out her vast legal expertise and background.  Judge Grays has been very involved in community action.  She is an outstanding role model for women who are pursuing a legal career.  She was highly endorsed by Councilman Archie Spigner and the Vice Chairperson of our Queens County Democratic Organization Dora Young. 

Justices Thomas, Kelly, Rotker and Grays will continue their distinguished legal careers and will serve the people of Queens County and New York State with distinction.

DA Richard Brown addressed the Judicial Convention.  He recalled that he was initially nominated by the Queens County Democratic Judicial Convention in 1978.  DA Brown complimented the great candidates and the great leaders who chose them.  DA Brown has and continues to serve Queens County as an outstanding District Attorney.  He is a legal scholar who has brought talent and experience to his position.

Please join our Rally for Peace in Israel on Saturday, October 6, 2002 at the Knights of Columbus at 333 Beach 90th Street.  It is important at this critical period that we come together to support the peace process.

Also, please attend the Rockaway Music and Arts Council Festival on Saturday, September 28 and Sunday, September 29.  There will be fun for everyone.


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