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Edward Schoifet Family Law Award
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Cheryl M. Spilka
2018 Edward Schoifet Family Law Award


In recognition of her contributions to the practice of Family Law, Cheryl M. Spilka, Esq., will receive the 2018 Edward Schoifet Family Law Award presented by the Family Law Section on January 23, 2019, at The Pines Manor in Edison, during the Bar Association's joint dinner meeting with the Union and Somerset County Bar Associations. (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.


Throughout her years of practicing family law Cheryl has demonstrated an admirable standard of professionalism to her colleagues and to members of the judiciary. Cheryl concerns herself with the quality of her work product and polishes all of her written communications and pleadings submitted to court until she is satisfied with them. Her preparation for every case includes researching any issue which may arise in that case. She has been diligent and dedicated in serving the needs and interests of her family law clients and in assisting attorneys and clients to settle even the most troublesome cases in mediation.  Her acknowledged success in mediating cases is based upon her ability to assess the strengths and weaknesses of each case and to convey that reality to the parties in a calm manner that is effective in reaching resolution.


Cheryl began her career in 1990 as Law Clerk for the Honorable Joyce E. Munkasci (retired), in the Family Part.  She was one of the first attorneys recognized by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Certified Matrimonial Law Attorney in 1998, a distinction she still maintains. She entered private practice in 1991 and was a partner with several successor law firms culminating with her partnership of Ramatowski, Spilka, and Schwartz from 2008 to 2017.  Currently she is Of Counsel with Rozin-Golinder, LLC in East Brunswick, New Jersey.


She has been an active member of the New Jersey State Bar and the Middlesex County Bar Association since 1991.  Cheryl has served on the Middlesex County Family Law Section Executive Committee since 2010.  She was a founding member of the Mid-Jersey Collaborative Law Alliance and a member of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.


Cheryl has generously given her time and competent legal skills to the Superior Court, Middlesex County, serving as a panelist in the Early Settlement Program since 1993 and serving on the District VIII Supreme Court Ethics Committee from 1999 to 2016.  She has been a Court Mediator for Economic Aspects of Family Law from 2007 and a member of the Middlesex County Assignment Judge’s Family Law Committee since 2005.  In addition, she has provided volunteer legal assistance for Women Aware, 1994-2003, and for Jewish Family Services, 1991-1994.  In family law cases, Cheryl has been appointed Arbitrator, Parent Coordinator, and Guardian-ad-Litem. She participated in the Joseph Halpern American Inns of Court, 1996-1999, and is currently a Master in the Aldona Appleton Inn of Court.


In 2005, Cheryl was awarded the Martin S. Goldin Family Law Award as an outstanding family law attorney who had been practicing less than 15 years.  As the recipient of the 2018 Edward Schoiffet Family Law Award, Cheryl is the first attorney to receive both prestigious awards in Middlesex County.


Cheryl has two sons, Andrew Schmierer and Ross Schmierer; Ross and his wife Rachael are the parents of her four grandchildren, all of whom Cheryl adores. Spending time with them is her favorite activity. She and her husband Len reside in Monroe Township. They enjoy traveling, and their extensive trips have taken them to more than 50 countries on 6 continents.  Cheryl spends her spare time attending concerts and the theater, reading, and playing cards.  As a young adult she was an accomplished violinist and enjoys all types of music.


The previous recipients of the Edward Schoifet Award were David M. Wildstein (2006), John P. Paone, Jr. (2007), Manny Gerstein (2008), Jean M. Ramatowski (2009), Leonard R. Busch (2010), Evelyn M. Hartmann (2011), Charles F. Vuotto, Jr. (2012), William G. Brigiani (2013), Robert E. Goldstein (2014), Russell H. Gale (2015),  Ellen F. Schwartz (2016), and Deborah A. Rose (2017).

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