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New Jersey Legal Community Supports Nomination of Michael Noriega as Associate Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court


The Governor’s Judicial Advisory Panel, comprised of Chief Justice James Zazzali, Justice John Wallace, Chief Justice Deborah Poritz, Justice Virginia Long, Justice Stewart Pollock, and Judge  Peter Doyne: “The Panel found that the candidate has the competence, integrity and judicial temperament to be an outstanding Justice.”

Matthew S. Adams, President of the Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers of New Jersey: “Michael Noriega’s rare combination of intellect and humility make him uniquely qualified to serve as an Associate Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court. His professional accolades are matched only by the unanimous consensus of his peers that he is a terrific person. His career has been dedicated to ensuring that everyone, no matter their station in life, is afforded the full due process protections that our legal system provides. As a Supreme Court Justice, he will no doubt continue to do so. The Governor could not have selected a more even-handed, compassionate, empathetic, and talented individual to serve on the Court.”

Jeralyn L. Lawrence, New Jersey State Bar Association President: “Today’s nomination of Michael Noriega offers a promise of relief in the historic vacancies that have faced our state’s highest court for months. Restoring the Supreme Court to a full bench for the first time since December 2021 marks an important step in upholding the independence and integrity of our Judiciary, as well as ensuring that our state’s highest court better reflects the diversity of our great state. Mr. Noriega has been an active member of the New Jersey State Bar Association, serving as the 2018-2019 chair of the Immigration Law Section and is a current member of the Judicial Administration Committee and Legislative Committee, and he was also a member of the Association's Pandemic Task Force. We urge the Senate to provide an expeditious hearing for Michael Noriega. We also continue to be concerned about the nearly 60 vacancies facing our Superior Courts. We hope that efforts will remain focused on addressing those vacancies that have had a deep and lasting negative impact on the people and businesses that call our state home.”

Jeff Chiesa, Former U.S. Senator and New Jersey Attorney General: “Mike Noriega is a first-rate lawyer of the highest integrity who cares deeply about his home state and the many issues impacting communities throughout the state. Mike’s humility, sharp intellect and diverse experiences as a lawyer will make him an outstanding Associate Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, and I commend Governor Murphy for selecting such an excellent candidate.”

John Kip Cornwell, Interim Dean and Professor of Law at Seton Hall University: “Michael Noriega is a cherished Seton Hall alumnus and a beloved adjunct professor at Seton Hall Law, most recently teaching our required Appellate Advocacy course. His willingness to generously share his knowledge with our community has benefitted our students immeasurably. We are, in addition, extremely proud of his tireless work on behalf of the immigrant population in New Jersey. It is wonderful that his values and intellect can now find a home on the state’s highest court.”

New Jersey Public Defender Joseph Krakora: “Today is a special day in the 56 year history of the New Jersey Office of the Public Defender. Governor Murphy’s nomination of Michael Noriega to the New Jersey Supreme Court represents the first time a public defender has been selected to serve on our State’s highest court. Mr. Noriega worked for this office from 2003-2008 as a staff attorney in our Essex Trial Region before going into private practice. Since that time, he has represented our clients as designated counsel and served, on a volunteer basis, as an advisor to our attorneys on issues related to immigration consequences for non-citizen clients. He is a first class attorney with integrity and a true commitment to social justice and equal protection under the law for all New Jersey residents. He will make a great addition to the Court and I am proud to call him a colleague. He is the perfect choice to become the first former public defender on the NJ Supreme Court.”