State Judicial Review Commission says Dem candidate for Ulster Surrogate Court “not qualified”


Sara McGinty

A state judicial review commission rated Peter Matera, Republican candidate for Ulster County surrogate’s court judge, “qualified” in a Sept. 28 press release. But Democratic nominee Sara McGinty also submitted to review and was rated “not qualified” in a subsequent release issued on Wednesday, Oct. 5, after not being mentioned in the earlier release. Sharon Graff, the Working Families candidate, chose not to participate in the process.

McGinty, who won a Democratic primary over Graff last month, said Wednesday that, rumors to the contrary, “I have no intention of withdrawing. I have no reason to do so.”

The Albany-based Independent (Third District) Judicial Elections Qualification Commission rates candidates from “highly qualified” to “not qualified” but does not discuss its findings. Local attorney Majer Gold of Woodstock is a member of the 15-member review commission, which is appointed by senior state judges upon recommendations from county bar associations.


Graff said she chose not to participate in what McGinty called an “exhaustive process” because of “pressing business” in her Kingston law firm. Graff was the Democratic convention’s choice in June but lost the nomination to McGinty by more than 10 percent of the final vote.

Matera will also appear on the Conservative, Independence and Reform party lines. Candidates are vying to succeed retiring Surrogate Judge Mary Work. Term of office is 10 years.

There are 2 comments

  1. Lets B. Honest

    Hugh Reynolds ongoing subjective digs at Graff shows his inability to remain unbiased in his reporting. The loss was by just less than 10 %, not more. Further McGinty’s only ended up being in the primary due to a technicality regarding notice, and in truth, she failed to obtain the necessary number of signatures to be placed on the ballot. The lack of attention and thorough, accurate and objective reporting regarding this race has been disgraceful especially considering it has is a 10 year appointment! Reynolds further fails to address that there is great concern my many democrats that by McGinty choosing to stay in this race after this determination is giving it to the republicans and against many leaders’ better judgment, she is choosing to continue to run. Why not give the WHOLE story Mr. Reynolds?

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