Local August 27, 2012 | 2:08 pm

The New York Times backs Dominican-born judge to Surrogate Court

New York.- In today’s The New York Times item titled “For Judgeships in New York City,” the renown daily states its support, albeit a “close call,” for Dominican-born Civil Court judge Rita Mella, to the bench in the Manhattan Surrogate Court

It there are several “important-but-low-visibility judicial contests” in the city’s boroughs of Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx that warrant broad attention. Here are our recommendations in four of these Democratic matchups.

“SURROGATE’S COURT, MANHATTAN Two well-qualified sitting judges — Barbara Jaffe and Rita Mella — are vying to preside over this powerful court, which oversees wills, estates and adoptions. The winner will succeed Kristin Booth Glen, who is stepping down after seven years as one of the borough’s two Surrogate’s Court judges. Ms. Jaffe, a longtime Civil Court judge, has served since 2010 as an acting State Supreme Court justice, focusing largely on matrimonial cases. Ms. Mella won her Civil Court seat in 2006. She now sits in Criminal Court, but has also served as the principal court attorney for Margarita López Torres, a judge in Brooklyn Surrogate’s Court.”

The prestigious daily says both contenders are thoughtful and hard-working, and both support court reforms. In a close call, our endorsement goes to Ms. Mella. “We are impressed by her solid grasp of the office, excellent people skills and obvious passion for the court’s work.”

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