Brooklyn Boro

Maria Aragona claims victory in Civil Court primary

Cause for celebration, says Columbian Lawyers’ President Caputo

August 26, 2020 Rob Abruzzese
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It took about two months for the final votes to be counted, but Maria Aragona was finally able to announce last week that she was the winner of June’s Democratic primary for Civil Court judge in Brooklyn.

“I am humbled and proud to announce it is finally official that I am the Democratic nominee for Civil Court judge in this year’s general election in November,” Aragona said. “Words cannot express how truly grateful I am to all of the voters in the 3rd Municipal District for voting in this year’s primary election, either by coming out to vote on June 23 or during early voting or who voted by absentee ballot.”

Aragona, a law clerk in the Kings County Supreme Court, Civil Term, had a commanding 21.5 percent lead against her opponent, Stephen Burzio, on the day after the June 23 primary. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, an abnormally high number of mail-in ballots needed to be tallied.

The 3rd Municipal District, from which Aragona was elected, comprises the neighborhoods of Williamsburg, Greenpoint and Bushwick and also includes parts of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Clinton Hill and Fort Greene.

While the victory is only a Democratic primary victory, Aragona is likely going to be on the ballot in November unopposed. If she wins that election, she will become a judge in the Brooklyn trial courts on Jan. 1, 2021. She was elected to sit in the Civil Court, but because the system doesn’t have enough judges in other areas, Aragona will sit for at least one year in the Kings County Criminal Court before heading back to Civil Court.

Aragona is a Hofstra University School of Law graduate who started her career in private practice. Since 2012, she has worked as a law clerk in the Supreme Court for Justice Kenneth Sherman. In the trial assignment part, Aragona worked on cases that involved construction accidents, labor law cases, medical malpractice, negligence and automobile accidents.

Active in the local bar associations, Aragona is a trustee at the Brooklyn Bar Association, is president of the Confederation of Columbian Lawyer Associations and the Catholic Lawyers Guild, and is first vice president of the Columbian Lawyers Association of Brooklyn.

She received a lot of support from the Columbian Lawyers during her campaign. And when members found out that she officially won the primary, they were ecstatic.

“Hearing the news that Maria Aragona has officially become the Democratic nominee for Civil Court Judge Kings County is truly a cause for celebration,” said Chris Caputo, president of the Columbian Lawyers of Brooklyn.

“I could not think of an individual more deserving,” Caputo continued. “Through her time spent as the principal law clerk to a judge in Supreme Court Kings County, Maria has consistently shown the legal acumen, temperament and organizational skills that will serve her well in a judicial role.  She has a tireless work ethic, which is demonstrated in both her professional life as well as in her personal life through her involvement with numerous community and legal associations.”

Caputo and Aragona were recently installed together as president and first vice president, respectively, of the Columbian Lawyers Association. Caputo admitted that many members were already congratulating her at the installation prior to the victory being made official. They just couldn’t help it, he said.

“I echo the sentiments of our entire membership when I say that we are extremely proud of her accomplishment,” Caputo said. “One of the goals of our association is to foster, promote and support the advancement of qualified persons of Italian ancestry to the judiciary. We could not ask for a better example than Maria Aragona to embody the fulfilment of that goal. The people of Brooklyn will benefit from having her on the bench, and she will no doubt serve with distinction for many years to come.”

Aragona also had the support of some local politicians, including U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney, State Sen. Julia Salazar, Assemblymembers Walter Mosley and Joseph Lentol, and District Leader Linda Minucci.

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