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Bar Trustees
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Joshua Altman
2015 Trustee

Josh was admitted to the New Jersey and Federal Bars in 2000 and is an associate in the law firm of Benedict & Altman in New Brunswick. His practice is concentrated primarily in the area of criminal defense in State and Federal Courts.

Josh graduated from the University of Vermont in 1997 and received his JD from Seton Hall University Law School in 2000. During law school he clerked for the law firm of Gill & Chamas in Woodbridge and after his admission to the NJ Bar, he clerked for Hon. Bryan Garruto, JSC during the 2000-01 court term.

Josh is a very active member of the bar. He serves as Co-Chair of the Association’s Young Lawyers Committee, is a Trustee of the Middlesex County Bar Foundation and is President of the New Brunswick Bar Association. He is also a member of the NJ State Bar Association and National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and was recently named a Rising Star by New Jersey Monthly Magazine.

Benedict & Altman
247 Livingston Avenue
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
732.745.9000
jaltman@benedictandaltman.com

Kim M. Connor
2015 Trustee

Kim M. Connor is a graduate of New York Law School, and is a member of the New Jersey State Bar, the U.S. District Court of New Jersey, and the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals. Kim is Of Counsel in the New Jersey Office of Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker, LLP.  She practices primarily in the areas of professional liability defense and insurance coverage. 

Kim is a member of the American Bar Association, the New Jersey Bar Association, and the Middlesex County Bar Association. Kim is Chair of the Insurance Coverage Division of New Jersey Bar Association for the 2011-2012 term, and is currently the District VIII Ethics Committee Chair.

Wilson Elser
200 Campus Drive
Florham Park, NJ 07932
973.624.0800
kim.connor@wilsonelser.com

Megha Thakkar
2015 Trustee

Megha was admitted to the state bar of New Jersey in 2008 and the state bar of New York in 2009.  She is an associate at Norris McLaughlin & Marcus, P.A. in Bridgewater. She represents clients in all aspects of matrimonial and family law, including divorce litigation and mediation, post-judgment litigation, custody and parenting time issues, alimony and child support, pre-nuptial agreements, and domestic violence matters.  Prior to her current position, Megha was a senior associate at the Law Offices of Edward R. Weinstein, L.L.C. in East Brunswick where she also exclusively practiced matrimonial and family law.  She also served as the Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Andrea G. Carter, J.S.C., Superior Court of New Jersey, Family Part, Middlesex County.  In 2014, Ms. Thakkar was selected for inclusion on the list of New Jersey Super Lawyers Rising Stars.

Megha graduated from New York University in 2005 and from St. John's University School of Law in 2008.  In law school, she was a recipient of the St. Thomas More Academic Scholarship, was a member of the Moot Court Honor Society, served as President of the South Asian Law Students Association, and was named to the Dean's List.

Norris, McLaughlin & Marcus, PA
721 Route 202-206
Suite 200
PO Box 5933

Bridgewater, NJ 08807-5933
908.722.0700
mrthakkar@nmmlaw.com

Rosemarie Williams
2015 Trustee

Rosemarie Ruggiero Williams is a retired Superior Court Judge with a state-wide Mediation/Arbitration and legal consulting practice. She makes her home base Middlesex County with an office located on Centennial Avenue in Piscataway. While on the bench she sat in every division and was the designated Environmental Judge for Vicinage 13. She also served as the Presiding General Equity and Probate Judge. Although assigned to several vicinages her last assignment was to Middlesex County and she has been a member of our bar association since that time. Since judges cannot serve on boards of bar associations she has enjoyed being more active to since leaving the bench. She was recently elected as fellow of the American Bar Association.

Prior to going on the bench she was a litigator for many years, handling all types of civil litigation including Civil Rights, Employment, and Environmental and Personal Injury cases. Her last assignment prior to coming on the bench was Section Chief of the Tort Litigation Unit in the Attorney General's office.

She graduated from Villanova School of Law and Summa Cum Laude from the College of New Jersey. In addition to her other legal activities she enjoys teaching and has taught continuing legal education courses in various subjects for both the bench and bar. Currently she also serves as an adjunct professor at Seton Hall Law School teaching trial skills and dispute resolution courses.

PO Box 86
Hopewell, NJ 08525
732.246.8118
RosmarieRWilliams@msn.com

Eugene Wishnic
2015 Trustee

New Jersey native Eugene Wishnic earned his JD in 1992 from the Rutgers School of Law in Camden. In 1997 he hung his own shingle on Bayard Street in New Brunswick. His practice is primarily focused on representing accident victims in Superior Court and defendants in both municipal and Superior Court. Since becoming an attorney in 1992, Eugene has made a firm commitment to developing a fluency in Spanish which has allowed him to carve out a niche client base among the local Latin community.

 

Eugene is a member of the Middlesex County Bar Association, New Jersey State Bar Association, Middlesex County Trial Lawyers’ Association, New Brunswick Bar Association, American Association for Justice, New Jersey Association for Justice, is a contributor to NJ-PAC and presently serves as co-chairman of the MCBA’s Municipal Court Practice Committee.  He is looking forward to serving as Trustee to the Middlesex County Bar Association and continuing to promote the strength and growth of the Association and the members it serves.

110 Bayard Street
Suite 2B
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
732.448.1700
eugene.wishnic@gmail.com

John F. Gillick
2016 Trustee

Jack is a partner in the East Brunswick law firm of Martin, Kane & Kuper and concentrates his practice on the litigation of employment discrimination, civil rights, and personal injury claims. He received his Juris Doctor from Seton Hall University in 2001 and thereafter served as Law Clerk to the Hon. Jack L. Lintner, former Presiding Judge of the Superior Court, Appellate Division.

The current Immediate Past President for the Middlesex County Bar Foundation, Jack spearheaded several projects including Casino Night, the Project Law essay contest and a holiday toy drive for Catholic Charities. He was recently named a "Rising Star" by Super Lawyers magazine for the fifth year in a row in the area of employment law. Jack has won appeals before both the New Jersey Supreme Court and the Third Circuit Court of Appeals and has been counsel of record on numerous published opinions.

A former Trustee for the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, Jack has taught continuing legal education courses on behalf of the Middlesex County Bar Association, is a Volunteer Lawyer for Justice for the Legal Services Foundation of Essex County, and is a member of the New Jersey, Middlesex County, New Brunswick and American Bar Associations. He is also a committee member for the Good Scout Award Dinner for the Boy Scouts of America’s Central New Jersey Council and is an Assistant Troop Leader for his daughters’ Girl Scout troop.

Martin Kane & Kuper
180 Tices Lane
Building B, Suite 200
East Brunswick, NJ 08816
732.214.1800
jgillick@mkklaw.com

Meryl Gonchar
2016 Trustee

Meryl is a partner at Greenbaum Rowe Smith & Davis LLP and co-chair of the firm’s Real Estate Department. Her practice encompasses all aspects of land use, zoning and land use litigation. She appears before planning and zoning boards throughout the state on behalf of property owners and developer clients in connection with residential, commercial, industrial and mixed use projects. She also represents clients in land use, condemnation and related litigation before the Superior Court of New Jersey in connection with prerogative writs litigation, challenging denials of land use approvals and defending approvals against challenges. Her diversified experience and extensive knowledge of the complexities of land use law enables her to assist clients throughout the various stages of a project’s development, from acquisition through approvals and permitting, due diligence, financing, leasing or sales.

Meryl is an active member of the NJ Builders Association, serving on the Legislative Committee and speaking regularly at the Association’s events. She is the Vice President of Associate Affairs of NAIOP New Jersey and has previously served as a member of NAIOP’s Board of Trustees and as co-chair of its Education Committee. She is a past president of CREW NJ and a former delegate to CREW Network. She is a past chair and member of the Board of Directors of the Land Use Law Section of the NJ State Bar Association as well as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Bar Association’s Women in the Profession Section. She is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Middlesex County Bar Association.  Ms. Gonchar is a Fellow of the American College of Real Estate Lawyers (ACREL).  She is also a founder of the firm’s Women’s Leadership Forum. 

Meryl is recognized in the Chambers USA Guide and Best Lawyers in America. She is listed in New Jersey Super Lawyers as a Top 100 Lawyer and among the Top 50 Women Lawyers in the state.

Meryl is a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors and a past President of Women's Philanthropy of Jewish Federation of Greater Middlesex County and a member of the Board of Trustees of the New Jersey Association of Jewish Federations.  She has served on the Board of Directors of Executive Women of New Jersey and the Board of Trustees of the George Street Playhouse.

She is a graduate of Rutgers College and Rutgers University School of Law, Newark.

Meryl resides in East Brunswick with her husband, Wayne.  They have two children, Daniel, a pilot and flight instructor, and Jillian, who will be a freshman at Ithaca College in the fall.

Greenbaum, Rowe, Smith & Davis
Metro Corporate Campus I
PO Box 5600
Woodbridge, NJ 07095
732.549.5600
mgonchar@greenbaumlaw.com


Louis Seminski
2016 Trustee

Lou is a Creditors' Rights Associate on the Banking & Creditors' Rights Team at the law firm of Wilentz Goldman & Spitzer. He has experience in litigating a variety of banking and complex commercial matters involving financial institutions and other entities. He also has significant experience in real estate related disputes, professional malfeasance, enforcement of restrictive covenants, governmental affairs and intellectual property issues.

 

Lou is a Trustee of the Middlesex County Bar Association, a member of the Federal and Chancery Practice Committees of the Burlington and Atlantic County Bar Associations, the New Jersey State Bar Association, and the Association of the Federal Bar.

 

In addition to his positions in the Bar Association, Lou is a Barrister of the John C. Lifland American Inn of Court, an association dedicated to the practice of civil litigation and intellectual property law in both Federal and State Court.

 

Lou is active in the community, serving as Treasurer and Trustee of the Raritan Bay YMCA, a volunteer with the Raritan Bay Medical Center Foundation, as well as mentoring students at his alma mater, St. Joseph's High School in Metuchen, N.J., St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia, PA and Rutgers Law School where he serves on a career services advisory panel.

 

Upon entering the practice of law, Lou served a one year clerkship for the Hon. Yolanda Ciccone, J.S.C. after earning his JD degree at Rutgers Law School in 2001. While attending Rutgers Law School, he served as Articles Editor of the Rutgers Law Journal. Lou enjoys writing about the emerging legal issues of the day as they pertain to his practice, as well as those matters involving small closely held businesses.

Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer
90 Woodbridge Center Drive
PO Box 10
Woodbridge, NJ 07095
732.636.8000

lseminski@wilentz.com

Daria Anne Venezia
2016 Trustee

Daria was admitted to the New Jersey Bar in 1986 and is also a member of the Pennsylvania Bar and  Massachusetts Bar. She is a partner in the law firm of Venezia & Nolan, P.C. in Woodbridge. Daria's practice is concentrated on representation of government bodies, tax appeals and estates and guardianships.

Daria graduated from Boston College and received her JD from Boston College Law School. She also received an L.L.M. in Taxation from Boston University.

Daria formerly taught Business Law as an adjunct professor at Middlesex County College. She was also formerly a volunteer attorney coach for the Mt. St. Mary Academy mock trial team. Daria is a volunteer mediator in the Chancery Division Vounteer Mediation Program.

Daria is married to James Todd and has a son William.

Venezia & Nolan
306 Main Street
Woodbridge, NJ 07095
732.634.8700
dariaannevenezia@verizon.net

Charles Whelan III
2016 Trustee

After graduating from Rutgers Newark School of Law in 1981, Chuck clerked for the Hon. Samuel Allcorn, P.J.A.D.  He has been a sole practitioner since 1987, specializing in commercial and real estate litigation and bankruptcy, with an emphasis on title litigation.  Chuck is admitted to the New Jersey and New York Bars.  He has been recognized by Who’s Who in American Law, and has been rated preeminent by Martindale Hubbell.  He has been accepted as an expert witness in the fields of real estate law and professional negligence by the New Jersey courts.

Chuck served as a volunteer mediator in the Superior Court of New Jersey for five years, and was pro bono general counsel for Plainfield Habitat for Humanity for 22 years.  He served for two years as chairman of the board of the Central Jersey Chamber of Commerce, and was a youth sports coach for eleven years. He is also a member of the New Jersey State Bar Association and the Commercial Law League of America.  In his free time, Chuck enjoys mountain hiking.

114 Bayard Street
New Brunswick, NJ 08901

732.214.0300
whelaw@ix.netcom.com


Richard Barker
2017 Trustee

"Red" is retired from the practice of law. Prior to his retirement he was the Deputy Public Defender in the Middlesex Region of the Office of the Public Defender. His path to the Public Defender's Office is the result of a career dedicated to public service.

A self-labeled "child of the 60's," he was a volunteer at William Kunstler's Center for Constitutional Rights while in law school at Rutgers-Camden. He first made a name for himself as the Program Director for Hunterdon County Legal Services. He continued his quest to provide access to equal justice to all citizens by forming the Budget Barrister law firm in Woodbridge in 1979 (this was a full service solo practice that was the first in NJ to advertise in the Yellow Pages and in newspapers low cost legal fees for specified services and to file computer generated pleadings).

In 1989, Hon. Bradley Ferencz, J.S.C., who was then Deputy Public Defender for the Middlesex Region, persuaded Mr. Barker to join the office as a staff attorney. It was a perfect fit, as the position suited his appetite for both trial work and social justice. Ever since, he has cemented his status as one of the premier criminal defense attorneys in the county.



Risa M. Chalfin
2017 Trustee

Risa Chalfin is an associate at Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer practicing in the area of Commercial Litigation.

 

Prior to joining the firm, Risa was the law clerk for the Hon. Glenn Berman, Chancery Division of the New Jersey Superior Court. During her term as a law clerk, Judge Berman presided over the State v. Ravi trial. While in law school, she interned for the Hon. Barry T. Albin, Associate Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court and the National Football League.

 

Risa is a Trustee of the Middlesex County Bar Association and the Middlesex County Bar Foundation.  She serves on the Young Lawyers Committee for the Middlesex County Bar Association and the New Jersey Women Lawyers Association. She is also a member of the New Jersey State Bar Association.

 

Risa is actively involved with the University of Pennsylvania, acting as Co-Administrative Vice President of her class and interviewing prospective students. She is active in the Anti-Defamation League.

 

In her free time she enjoys following the New York Yankees and running.

Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer, PA
90 Woodbridge Center Drive
PO Box 10
Woodbridge, NJ 07095
732.636.8000
rchalfin@wilentz.com

Patrick Heller
2017 Trustee

Patrick was admitted to the New Jersey Bar in 2001 and is an associate with the law firm of Terkowitz and Hermesmann in Somerset. His practice primarily involves insurance defense including automobile liability, PIP arbitrations, worker's compensation defense and coverage matters.

Patrick graduated from High Point University in 1997 and from Penn State Law-Dickinson in 2001. Patrick also clerked with the Hon. J. Wesley Oler, Cumberland County Court of Common Pleas.

Patrick is active in the legal community and the bar association. In that regard, he serves on the MCBA Civil Practice Committee, helped put together and present a seminar on the Verbal Threshold and PIP law. He is also a frequent contributor to the MCBA's newsletter. Patrick has also been published in the New Jersey Law Journal and Rutgers Law Review-Commentaries wherein he has written articles dealing with emerging tort law issues and their impact on the legal community. Further, Patrick was selected by the New Jersey Board of Law Examiners and has served as a bar grader/reader for New Jersey Bar Exam.

Terkowitz & Hermesmann
400 Atrium Drive
PO Box 6745
Somerset, NJ 08875-6745
732.805.2800
pheller@hanover.com

Edward Testino
2017 Trustee

Edward Testino is a solo-practitioner in the Township of Old Bridge and concentrates his practice on trial, personal injury, matrimonial and municipal work. He received his JD from Oklahoma City University School of Law in 1984 and he received an LLM in Securities Regulation in May 1985 from Georgetown University School of Law. Ed is an alum of the University of Delaware where he received his BA degree. He is also admitted to the New York and D.C. Bars.

Ed serves as a member of the Middlesex County Bar Foundation Board of Trustees and currently serves as Treasurer. He is also a member of the Casino Night Committee.

In addition to the MCBA, Ed is a member of the New Jersey State Bar, Family Law Section and American Inns of Court. He has taught continuing legal education courses and lectured at trade associations on legal topics.

Ed has served in many capacities in his community, including serving sixteen years on the Old Bridge Town Council and over 20 years on his local Rotary. As a member of the Old Bridge/Sayreville Rotary Club, Ed helped support various local charities and he is a recipient of the Paul Harris Fellow Award for his service.

121 Highway 34
Matawan, NJ 07747
732.525.9000

testinolaw@hotmail.com


Kimberly Yonta
2017 Trustee

Since establishing YONTA LAW, LLC in New Brunswick in 2012, Kimberly concentrates her practice on criminal and municipal defense cases.  A former Assistant Hudson County Prosecutor in Jersey City, she served as both appellate unit and trial team supervisors, serving the people of Hudson County for over ten years.


Admitted to practice in New Jersey and Connecticut, Kimberly is a trustee of the New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA).  She serves as Chair-Elect of the Criminal Law Section, Chair of the Committee on Lawyers in Transition, Past Chair of the Women in the Profession Section, and Past Chair of the Young Lawyers Division.  In the NJSBA, she is a member of the Amicus Committee, Government and Public Sector Lawyers Committee, and the NJSBA representative to the Supreme Court Committee on Criminal Jury Charges.  With the New Jersey State Bar Foundation, Kimberly is a member of the "Legal Eagle" editorial advisory board. Past appointments include: New Jersey Commission on Professionalism and the Law, Membership and Public Relations Committee, Judicial Administration Committee, Legal Education Committee and Hudson Vicinage Advisory Committee on Minority Concerns.  Serving her local community, Kimberly is an assistant coach of the Rutgers University Mock Trial Association, the National Runner-Up Champion in 2011-12.  She also volunteers some of her time to the St. Vincent de Paul Society at St. Bartholomew Church in East Brunswick, ministering to those in need through the client services program.  Past achievements include Certification by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Criminal Trial Attorney and Middlesex County Bar Association Young Lawyer of the Year.  Kimberly served as the law clerk to the Hon. N. Peter Conforti in Morris County in 1999-00. She received her B.A., cum laude, from Providence College, attended Washington College of Law at American University, and received her J.D. from Quinnipiac University School of Law.

 

Kimberly lives in East Brunswick with her husband Craig Aronow, Esq., and their beautiful daughters, Abigail (6) and Madeline (3).
111 Livingston Avenue
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
732.421.1680
yontalaw@gmail.com

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Calendar

1/9/2015
Jan 9th Board of Trustees Meeting

1/21/2015
Jan 21st General Membership Dinner Meeting

1/26/2015
Jan 26th Municipal Court CLE Seminar

1/27/2015
Jan 27th Tax Law CLE Seminar

1/29/2015
Jan 29th Real Estate CLE Seminar

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