New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) named a new nominee to be the top judge of New York’s highest court after the Democratic-controlled state Senate rejected her first pick.
“Today I am nominating Judge Rowan Wilson to serve as Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals & announcing my intention to nominate Caitlin Halligan as Associate Judge,” Hochul announced on Twitter.
“These highly-qualified, thoughtful jurists will serve with distinction & ensure our courts deliver justice to all,” Hochul said. If confirmed to the post, Wilson — who already serves the top court as an associate judge — will become the court’s first Black chief judge, according to the governor’s office.
The state Senate earlier this year voted to reject the confirmation of Justice Hector LaSalle, who Hochul described as “an overwhelmingly qualified and talented jurist.” LaSalle had come under scrutiny from some on the left over his judicial record, and his rejection was a political blow to the governor.
Wilson has served the last six years as the Associate Judge of the Court of Appeals, according to Hochul’s office. Halligan is currently a partner at the law firm of Selendy Gay Elsberg PLLC and is a former state solicitor general.
Hochul in a statement lauded Wilson’s “sterling record of upholding justice and fairness” and said Halligan “will bring a critical perspective to our justice system.” The two nominees will now have to be confirmed by the state Senate.