Two Bronxites race to replace surrogate court judge
By Adam Wisnieski
Two women, a Democrat and a Republican, will be on the ballot to replace the disgraced Surrogate Judge Lee Holzman, who will not seek re-election.
Judge Nelida Malave-Gonzalez, a Democrat who works in Bronx Civil and Supreme Court, is facing off with Frances O’Leary, a retired law assistant running on the Republican and Conservative lines.
They will compete to become the next Bronx Surrogate Court judge, a highly sought after judgeship that handles wills and estates of the deceased a.
Because the Bronx is one of the most Democratic counties in the nation, Judgeships are almost always decided in the Democratic Primary.
Though there were a few potential opponents for Judge Malave-Gonzalez, including Bronx Supreme Court Judge Darcel Clark, former Bronx Assemblyman Peter Rivera and attorney Winston Rouse, Judge Malave-Gonzalez ran unopposed in the primary.
Mr. Rivera didn’t pass the Bronx Democratic County Committee’s screening panel and County had Mr. Rouse booted off the ballot for incorrectly filling out his petition cover sheets.
Mr. Rouse filed a lawsuit over being disqualified, but it was thrown out in federal court. Judge Clark was recently appointed to the Appellate Division in Manhattan by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and subsequently left her position in the Bronx.
Judge Malave-Gonzalez’s opponent, unlike many Conservative and Republican challengers for legislative positions in the Bronx, has been out campaigning. Though she is running on the Republican and Conservative lines, she said she is a lifelong Democrat and decided to run “to clean up the reputation of the Bronx.”
Still, with support from the Bronx Democratic County Committee, the Ben Franklin Reform Democratic Club and many local elected officials, Judge Malave-Gonzalez is expected to win handily.
Keywordsadam wisnieski, surrogate judge, Nelida Malave-Gonzalez, Frances O’Leary, Peter Rivera , jeffrey dinowitz, Bronx Democratic County Committee,