SCHENECTADY : Polk to pursue Democratic nod for Family Court bench
Attorney Jill Polk will vie for the Democratic nomination for Schenectady County Family Court judge, increasing the likelihood of a September primary.
Polk also intends to seek ballot lines for the Working Families Party and on an independent line, but has not received any offi cial endorsements yet. Earlier this spring, the Schenectady County Democratic Committee endorsed Kevin Burke, who serves as fi rst deputy in the County Attorney’s Offi ce.
In announcing her candidacy, Polk touted her experience practicing family law in Family Court. She said her experience representing a diverse range of clients and having sat on the bench as a referee making decisions in family court makes her an ideal candidate.
“I will put the needs of our families first to find solutions to the challenges families face,” the Schenectady-based attorney said in a statement. “I can make the tough decisions, but I understand that they must be balanced with helping families solve problems for themselves in a positive and constructive way — for that is what we ultimately want.”
Polk also highlighted her work within the community. She served on the boards of Northeast Parent and Child Society and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Schenectady County and volunteered her time to develop the Women’s Bar Association’s free monthly legal clinic, a pro bono legal representation service for victims of domestic violence.
Polk received the Capital District Women’s Bar Association Pro Bono Award and the Schenectady County YWCA’s Women of the Year award. She earned her law degree from Albany Law School.
The seat is among two in the bustling court and has remained vacant since Christine Clark was sworn in as a state Supreme Court justice in January. Since that time, a patchwork of visiting and retired judges has filled the vacancy.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo could appoint an acting judge, but there’s been no indication when or if he ’ll will do so.