Judge Sheila A. Venable Makes History In New Jersey Court System

New Jersey Superior Court Judge Sheila A. Venable is making Black history and it's not even February. After successfully leading criminal courts in Hudson County, Venable is making another leap in her career. New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner has asked Venable to lead the Essex County vicinage. By accepting the job, she will become the first Black assignment judge in county history.

“I would like to thank Chief Justice Rabner for his confidence in my ability to serve as the assignment judge in Essex County,” Venable said.

“Judge Floria has set a strong example to follow. I am humbled and honored to have been chosen and I feel privileged to be a part of this independent judiciary.”

Stepping into this role, she will lead nearly 1,000 employees across the county. As the assignment judge, Venable will have control over the budget, personnel requests and county facilities. Through her job, she will report directly to the chief justice.

Prior to becoming the assignment judge, she took the bench in 2005 after being appointed by former Governor Richard Codey. After being re-appointed by former Governor Chris Christie in 2011, she earned tenure in 2011. Venable will replace Superior Court Judge Sallyanne Floria, who served nearly three decades on the bench.

“Judge Venable’s distinguished career has been marked by excellence, strong leadership, and empathy – qualities that will serve the State’s largest vicinage and the public well,” Rabner said.

“Essex County, and the Judiciary as a whole, are fortunate to have such a gifted jurist continue to maintain the highest standards Judge Floria exemplified.”

Expect Venable to enter into her new role in the new year.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

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