PROVIDENCE, RI – Governor Dan McKee today swore in five new judges to the Superior Court, Family Court, District Court, and Workers' Compensation Court.
"I am deeply honored to swear in a qualified and respected group of judges to serve with integrity in Rhode Island's judicial system," said Governor McKee. "These judges have spent decades practicing law and I am confident that their diverse knowledge and experiences have prepared them to fairly interpret the law and uphold justice in our state."
Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Superior Court, Kevin F. McHugh
Kevin F. McHugh is a graduate of Rhode Island College, the University of Connecticut, and New England School of Law, he has over 30 years of legal experience and presently serves as the Senior Assistant City Solicitor for the City of Providence and Legal Counsel to the Special Legislation and Veterans Affairs Committee for the Rhode Island Senate. He is also a sole practitioner. A resident of Providence, he fills a seat left vacant by the elevation of Judge Melissa A. Long to the Rhode Island Supreme Court.
"I am humbled and honored by my appointment and am grateful for the opportunity to serve all of the people of the State of Rhode Island as an Associate Justice of the Superior Court," McHugh said.
Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Family Court, Jeanine Perella McConaghy
Jeanine Perella McConaghy currently serves as the Assistant Attorney General and Deputy Chief of the criminal divisions. Prior to that, she was an Associate at Bouchard & Mallory in Manchester, New Hampshire. She is a board member of Foster Forward in Providence, and adjunct professor at the University of Massachusetts School of Law. A graduate of Lawrence University and Suffolk University Law School, she now resides in Barrington. She will be filling a seat left vacant by the retirement of Judge Rossie Lee Harris, Jr.
"I am humbled and honored to be nominated to the Family Court by Governor McKee. I know that behind every case are real people and families who deserve a judge who can fairly, empathetically and expeditiously decide their cases. I will work hard every day to be that judge," Perella McConaghy said.
Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Family Court, Shilpa Naik
Shilpa Naik is the first Indian-Asian American to serve on the Rhode Island Family Court. Since 2011, she has worked in Family Court as a Court-Appointed Special Advocate, providing legal representation to children in the care of the Department of Children, Youth and Families. Previously, she was partner at Oster & Naik Law Offices in Lincoln and, prior to that, was a Special Assistant Attorney General for the State of Rhode Island. A graduate of Brandeis University and Western New England College School of Law, she now resides in Lincoln with her husband and daughter. She will be filling a seat vacated by the retirement of Judge Stephen J. Capineri.
"I am extremely grateful and humbled to be selected by Governor McKee as an Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Family Court," Naik said. "I am aware that this honor and opportunity brings with it a tremendous responsibility to the citizens of our state. I will strive every day to serve the public and be a fair, impartial and compassionate jurist."
Associate Judge of the Rhode Island District Court, William J. Trezvant
William J. Trezvant serves as Senior Counsel for Pannone Lopes Devereaux & O'Gara, and previously held various positions as Special Assistant in the Rhode Island Department of Attorney General, where he worked for 16 years. He is a graduate of the University of Rhode Island and the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William & Mary. He resides in Portsmouth and is active on several boards including the Narragansett Council Boy Scouts of America Scout Outreach Program and the Thurgood Marshall Law Society. Trezvant fills a seat vacated by the retirement of Judge Madeline Quirk.
"I am excited to be appointed as Associate Justice of the District Court by Governor McKee. It will be an honor to serve the people of Rhode Island," Trezvant said. "I know that I stand on the shoulders of many people who came before me. I intend to be a role model for those who are coming after me and to always uphold the highest ethical standard."
Associate Judge of the Rhode Island Workers' Compensation Court, George J. Lazieh
George J. Lazieh has over three decades of criminal, civil and workers compensation trial experience, including 21 years at the Law Office of Steven B. Stein. Appointed by the Chief Judge of the District Court in 2012, he serves as a bail commissioner for the State of Rhode Island. He has also served as Special Assistant Attorney General for the State of Rhode Island. He graduated from Roger Williams University and Suffolk University Law School, and currently teaches criminal and constitutional law-related courses at the Community College of Rhode Island. A resident of Cumberland, he is filling a seat vacated by the retirement of Judge Diane Connor.
"From an old Arabic proverb: we have one language, and two ears for a reason, we need to listen more than we speak. As a judge I will listen," Lazieh said.