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General News

Judge Helen Voutsinas Appointed to Appellate Division’s Second Department

NEW YORK – The Honorable Helen Voutsinas, a judge in Nassau County, was appointed by New York Governor Kathy Hochul to the Appellate Division’s Second Department, Newsday reported on May 22, noting that the midlevel appellate court handles “appeals originating from 10 downstate counties including Nassau and Suffolk.”

“The appointment of Voutsinas, 47, was announced Friday afternoon [May 20] by Hochul’s office,” Newsday reported, adding that “the courthouse is in Brooklyn Heights, with jurisdiction over both Long Island counties, as well as Richmond, Kings, Queens, Westchester, Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, and Putnam counties.”

Voutsinas is the daughter of immigrants, her father Gerasimos Voutsinas from Greece and her mother Denise from the Dominican Republic.

“Since 2019, Voutsinas has been a Nassau County appellate term judge, and before that she was a county district court judge,” Newsday reported, noting that “she was elected in 2018 to be a county justice” and “was also previously president of the Long Island Hispanic Bar Association and the Nassau County Women’s Bar Association.”

“A St. John’s University School of Law graduate in 1999, Voutsinas was in private practice from 1999 to 2001, assistant town attorney for North Hempstead from 2001 to 2003, deputy majority counsel for the county legislature in 2004, and then a principal law clerk to a judge,” Newsday reported.

“In Voutsinas’ time presiding in Nassau courts, she has handled a range of matters, including one in April involving allegations puppy shops in Lynbrook and Hicksville sold sick dogs (Voutsinas, dismissing part of the claim but letting others stand, allowed the business to resume, but with conditions), and another in December regarding the Long Island Rail Road’s $2.6 billion Third Track project and its dispute with the Village of Garden City, which didn’t like where the railroad put utility poles and was holding up the project, Newsday reported, adding that “she ordered the village to grant the necessary permits for the project to go forward.”

“In 2014, she presided over the guilty plea of former celebrity lawyer Dominic Barbara in a case stemming from an alleged theft of a pocketbook from a store and a domestic dispute with his ex-wife,” Newsday reported, noting that “Voutsinas issued a conditional discharge but no jail time.”

“In 2006, as president of the Nassau County Women’s Bar Association, she tried to help shape a part-time work policy after Nassau’s then-district attorney, Kathleen Rice, changed her predecessor’s policy and told a dozen part-time attorneys in her office — many working mothers — either to quit or work full-time,” Newsday reported.

“It’s definitely not a food fight with the district attorney, this just became an issue and needs to be explored,” Voutsinas said at the time, Newsday reported.

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