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Anderson.nora.S.2012.10.01.DET

Anderson.nora.S.2012.10.01.DET

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Published by: liz_benjamin6490 on Oct 10, 2012
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STATEOFNEWYORKCOMMISSIONONJUDICIALCONDUCT
In
theMatter
of
theProceedingPursuanttoSection44,subdivision4,
of
theJudiciaryLawinRelationto
DETERMINATION
NORA
S.
ANDERSON,aJudge
of
theSurrogate'sCourt,NewYorkCounty.THECOMMISSION:HonorableThomasA.Klonick,ChairHonorableTerryJaneRuderman,ViceChairHonorableRolando
T.
AcostaJoseph
W.
Belluck,Esq.JoelCohen,Esq.RichardD.Emery,Esq.PaulB.Harding,Esq.NinaM.MooreHonorableKaren
K.
PetersRichard
A.
Stoloff,Esq.APPEARANCES:RobertH.Tembeckjian(BrendaCorrea,
Of
Counsel)fortheCommissionGodosky
&
Gentile,P.C.(byDavidGodosky)fortheRespondentTherespondent,Nora
S.
Anderson,aJudge
of
theSurrogate'sCourt,NewYorkCounty,wasservedwithaFormalWrittenComplaintdatedJuly29,2011.The
 
FormalWrittenComplaintcontainstwocharges
of
misconductarisingfromher2008campaignforSurrogate.Charge
I
allegedthatrespondentandherthen-employerparticipatedinaseries
of
financialtransactionsinwhichsheacceptedapurportedgiftandapurportedloanfromhimandpromptlyfunneledthosefundstohercampaign.ChargeIIallegedthataftertheprimaryelectionandbeforethegeneralelection,respondent'scampaignheldafundraiserforthepurpose
of
repayingaloanrespondenthadmadetohercampaIgn.RespondentfiledaverifiedanswerdatedSeptember21,2011.
On
June26,2012,theAdministrator,respondent'scounselandrespondententeredintoanAgreedStatement
of
FactspursuanttoJudiciary
Law
§44(5),stipulatingthattheCommissionmakeitsdeterminationbasedupontheagreedfacts,recommendingthatrespondent
be
censuredandwaivingfurthersubmissionsandoralargument.
On
September
19,2012,
theCommissionacceptedtheAgreedStatementprovidedthatthepartiesagreedthatChargeIIwouldbedismissedandtheAgreedStatementwouldbemodifiedtosoreflect.TheClerk
of
theCommissionsoadvisedtheAdministratorandrespondent'scounsel.ByjointletterdatedSeptember
21,2012,
therespectiveattorneysadvisedtheCommissionthattheyagreedthatChargeIIbedismissed.Accordingly,theCommissionmakesthefollowingdetermination:
1.
RespondenthasbeenaJudge
of
theSurrogate'sCourt,
New
YorkCounty,since2009.HertermexpiresonDecember
31,2022.
Shewasadmittedtothepractice
of
lawin
New
Yorkin1983.2.
At
alltimesrelevanttothemattersherein,respondentwasandis2
 
marriedtoVincentA.Levell,anattorneyemployed
by
theNewYorkStateUnifiedCourtSystem.
3.
Priortobecomingajudge,respondentwasemployed
as
anattorneyinthelawfirm
of
SethRubenstein,PC,
in
Brooklyn,NewYork,from1999to2008.Respondenthadpreviouslyworked
as
ChiefandDeputyChiefClerkintheSurrogate'sCourt,NewYorkCounty.Overtheyears,therelationshipbetweenrespondentandMr.Rubensteindevelopedintoone
in
whichhewasafriendandmentor.Theywereandremainveryclose.Forexample,
in
2004,Mr.Rubensteinexecutedalastwillandtestament
in
whichhebequeathedtorespondent$500,000.4.InApril2008,respondentbecameacandidatefortheDemocraticnominationforSurrogate
of
NewYorkCounty.Shehadneverpreviouslyrunforelectiontoanyoffice.HeropponentsintheDemocraticprimarywereSupremeCourtJusticeMiltonA.TinglingandattorneyJohn
J.
Reddy,Jr.TheprimaryelectiondatewasSeptember
9,
2008.ThegeneralelectiondatewasNovember4,2008.WinningtheDemocraticprimaryforSurrogatewastantamounttoelection,inasmuchastherewasnoRepublicanorotherpoliticalpartycandidateontheballotinthegeneralelection.
Respondent'sIndictment
and
AcquittalonCriminalCharges
5.
InDecember2008,respondentandSethRubensteinwereindictedbyaNewYorkCountyGrandJuryonvariouscharges,includingfeloniesandmisdemeanorsarisingfrommonetarytransactionsthatRubensteinmadetorespondentduringthe2008campaign.
3

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