Housing Court Bar Association welcomes new Supervising Judge Kevin McClanahan
Judge Kevin McClanahan has been to his share of Kings County Housing Court Bar Association (KCHCBA) meetings over the years. However, the Jan. 12 meeting was the first since he has taken over as supervising judge of the Housing Court.
Michael Rosenthal, president of KCHCBA, congratulated McClanahan for his new position, but both know that the judge has a difficult task ahead of him running that courthouse.
“We’d like to welcome Judge McClanahan, our new supervising judge to the Kings County Housing Court, to his new role,” Rosenthal said. “I’d like to congratulate him for that.”
“Thank you for the congratulations,” McClanahan said in response. “Most of you have been giving me congratulations and condolences at the same time. I appreciate that. I’m excited about taking over this position. I’ve been around for a number of years, you know me.”
McClanahan, who has been on the bench since he was appointed to the Housing Court in 2002 by Hon. Jonathan Lippman, is taking over for Hon. Cheryl Gonzales, who was elected to the Kings County Supreme Court last year. Despite his decades of experience in the court, the new supervisor is starting shorthanded.
“We’re going to have to deal with some of the bad before we get to the good,” McClanahan said.
“The reality is that we’re down two judges and as of Feb. 3rd we could be down six judges. That stems from factors that are out of our control in terms of the appointment of new judges.”
As if it wasn’t hard enough running a courthouse without a full complement of judges, McClanahan guessed that the court is also short by about 26 court attorneys, and an unknown number of clerks as well.
“Just to give you an example – Today I was covering Part P and unfortunately one of our judges had a family emergency so I began to cover Part S,” McClanahan explained. “I had another judge who has been out and I ended up covering Part D. My trial part was covering Part F and I ended up covering Part A, which was not that busy.
“Somewhere in the beginning of the morning, we realized that we didn’t have enough clerks so Part S did not have a clerk,” McClanahan continued. “So they took my clerk who was covering Part O and P and the expedited part and gave her Part S to cover as well until they could find clerks.”
Judge Jack Stoller, the Supervising Judge of the New York City Housing Courts, was also on hand for the meeting. Stoller didn’t have better answers than McClanahan did, however, he was helpful to KCHCBA members who had questions about their pending cases.
The KCHCBA had previously honored McClanahan during its Annual Luncheon in 2016.
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