MCBA Family Law Section
2013 Family Law Awards Winners
Cheryl Connors to Receive
2013 Martin S. Goldin
Family Law Award
The 2013 winner of the Martin S. Goldin Family Law Award is Cheryl E. Connors, Esq., of the law offices of Wilentz, Goldman, & Spitzer in the Woodbridge Offices. Cheryl will be presented with this award on January 23rd, 2013, at the Association’s Annual Family Law Dinner Meeting, to be held at The Pines Manor in Edison. (Click here for event details.)
Martin S. Goldin, the Chair of the Family Law Section since its inception in 1972, passed away in 2002. Marty was regarded as a fair and reasonable adversary and was renowned for his good nature, collegiality and genuine respect for all members of the bench and bar. Marty took great pleasure in discussing legal issues with newer attorneys and generously gave his time to mentor any attorney who sought his counsel.
In February, 2003, the Family Law Section established the Martin S. Goldin Family Law Award, to be presented each year to a Family Law Practitioner who has been engaged in the practice for 15 years or less and who exemplifies those principles by which Marty practiced family law, including: maintaining a continuous study of past and present case law; making a careful and detailed analysis of each case; presenting the issues and applicable law to clients in a readily understandable manner; attempting to settle issues on a fair and reasonable basis before resorting to litigation; fostering respect and courtesy for the bench and bar; maintaining high standards of integrity and professionalism, and exhibiting leadership in the County or State Bar Association.
Cheryl epitomizes the qualities in a lawyer that were especially important to Marty and which he incorporated into his daily practice. Cheryl is a zealous advocate for her clients and works to reach a fair and reasonable settlement according to the facts applied to the law of each case. Cheryl’s method of seeking the best result for her client involves a firm understanding of the law, careful attention to details, and a continuing dialogue with that client regarding the rights and liabilities which will affect the final resolution in the case.
Cheryl maintains a warm, even-tempered demeanor in her legal work, and she does not vary that temperament as she deals with her adversary regardless of the difficulties presented by the case.
Cheryl received her BA degree with distinction from Cornell University in 2000 and her JD from Seton Hall University, magna cum laude in 2005. At Seton Hall University Cheryl was a senior member of the Seton Hall Law Review, and upon her graduation she served as judicial clerk for the Hon. Barry T. Albin, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of New Jersey, from 2005 – 2006. Justice Albin has graciously agreed to present the Goldin Award to Cheryl on January 23rd.
Cheryl is an associate with the Family Law Team at Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer in Woodbridge. She concentrates her legal work in all issues of family law and has been trained and actively participates in collaborative law in family matters. She participates in the preparation and presentation of the Wilentz Family Law Digest at the joint meeting attended by members of the Middlesex, Union and Somerset Bar Associations.
In the New Jersey State Bar Association, Cheryl is a member of the Family Law Executive Committee, Family Law Section and Young Lawyers Division. She is a member of the Middlesex County Bar, Monmouth County Bar, New Jersey Women Lawyers Association and the Mid-Jersey Collaborative Law Alliance. She has served on the Law Revision Commission and on the Palimony Statute Subcommittee of the Family Law Executive Committee of the State Bar. She has co-authored an article presented at the 2008 Family Law Symposium, and authored “A Balancing Act: The Extent to Which a Stepparent Should be Held Responsible for a Stepchild’s Post-Divorce Support” published in the New Jersey Family Lawyer in 2011. She has been published in Divorce Magazine.
Cheryl is a panelist on the Early Settlement Panel in Middlesex County and an Associate Editor for the New Jersey Family Lawyer. She was selected for inclusion in the New Jersey Super Lawyers – Rising Stars in 2011 and 2012.
Cheryl is married to Thomas J. Connors, and they reside in Middletown, with their two children Brody, age 4, and Allie, age 2. She relaxes by spending her time with her husband and children in family activities.
Past winners of the award are Megan S. Murray in 2012, Paula Menar in 2011, Daniel Brown in 2010, Lisa Vignuolo in 2009, Gregg Rubenstein in 2008, Steven Enis in 2007, Frank Tournour in 2006, Cheryl Spilka in 2005, Lee Ann McCabe in 2004 and Robert M. Zaleski in 2003.
Chuck Vuotto to Receive
2013 Edward Schoifet
Family Law Award
In recognition of his contributions to the practice of Family Law, Charles F Vuotto, Jr. will receive the 2013 Edward Schoifet Family Law Award presented by the Family Law Section of the Middlesex County Bar Association. The award presentation will be held on January 23rd, at The Pines Manor in Edison, during the joint Middlesex/Union/Somerset Bar Dinner Meeting. (Click here for event details.)
The Schoifet Award, the highest honor presented by the Family Law Section, commemorates the legacy of Edward Schoifet who passed away in 2006. Ed was considered the dean of the Middlesex County Family Bar and was recognized as a role model for all family law practitioners.
The Award is presented annually to a Family Law Practitioner who has been engaged in the practice for 15 years or more and who exemplifies those principles by which Ed practiced family law: maintaining knowledge of past and present case law to advise clients thoroughly; analyzing the facts of each case in detail and diligently applying the law to those facts; presenting the issues and applicable law to the client in a manner appropriate to the client’s understanding; making purposeful efforts to settle the issues in fair and reasonable terms before resorting to litigation; fostering respect and courtesy for the bench and fellow attorneys; maintaining highest standards of integrity and professionalism; and exhibiting leadership in the Middlesex County or State Bar Association.
Chuck has been chosen by his colleagues to receive this award in honor of his long career as an accomplished family law attorney known for his advocacy for his clients while maintaining an attitude of fairness with his adversaries and courtesy in all circumstances. In representing his clients whether in the courtroom or in his pleadings, Chuck’s presentation is organized, documented, and to the point. Chuck is well-known to his colleagues for maintaining his binders of all material relevant to the case.
Chuck received his BA degree from Seton Hall University in 1983, and his JD degree from Ohio Northern University, Claude W. Pettit College of Law in 1986. He was admitted to the Bar of the State of New Jersey and to the U.S. District Court of the District of New Jersey in 1986. Chuck is a Certified Matrimonial Attorney in New Jersey, and a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, and a Fellow in Litigation Counsel of America. He is a partner in the law firm Tonneman, Vuotto, Enis & White, LLC in Matawan, NJ.
Chuck has served on the New Jersey Supreme Court’s Family Part Practice Committee from 2009 to 2011. He is a past Chair of the Family Law Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association and currently the Editor-in-Chief of the Section’s publication the New Jersey Family Lawyer.
For the past four years Chuck has been selected in the area of Family Law for inclusion in the Best Lawyers of America. He has been included in the listing of New Jersey Super Lawyers for the past six years and has a Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating of AV.
Chuck has lectured on family law subjects to the Family Part Judges at Judicial College, at ICLE seminars, Family Law Symposiums, and to accountants at the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the New Jersey Society of CPA’s. In the case of Brown v. Brown, 348 N.J. Super. 466 (App. Div. 2002), Chuck authored the brief in support of the State Bar Association’s motion for leave to appear as amicus curiae.
Trained in arbitration and mediation in family law, Chuck has served as a panelist on the Early Settlement Program and also as a Blue Ribbon panelist.
Chuck and his wife Rosemary reside in East Hanover, New Jersey, with their son Nicholas, age 18. Together they enjoy dining out with friends, traveling, and listening to classic rock and country music. Chuck relaxes by riding his Harley Davidson, biking, playing tennis, hiking, and drawing.
The previous recipients of the Edward Schoifet Award were Evelyn M. Hartmann in 2012, Leonard Busch in 2011, Jean Ramatowski in 2010, Manny Gerstein in 2009, John P. Paone, Jr. in 2008, and David Wildstein in 2007.