Lalor organizes salute to law enforcement

More than 100 police officers, elected officials and community residents came together recently in the Town of Wappinger for the first annual Salute to Law Enforcement Day.

After recent attacks on law enforcement, Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor, who is of Counsel to our firm, decided in early December to honor the men and women who instead of running from danger run toward it.

There are nearly 800,000 police officers around the country who report to work daily despite the inherent dangers. One hundred twenty one police officers were killed in the line of duty in 2014. That number included 47 officers killed by gunfire, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.

“I’m grateful for their commitment to us and I’m proud to honor their work. The overwhelming amount of good work they do can be overshadowed by politics sometimes. While some are twisting tragedies to score political points, it’s important for us to recognize and remember our police officers for their bravery and service.” said Lalor.

Former Judge Nicolai joins our Law Firm

The Hon. Francis Nicolai, former Administrative Judge of New York State’s Ninth Judicial District, is now Senior Counsel to one of Westchester’s most prominent law firms.

Steven H. Gaines, managing partner of Gaines, Novick, Ponzini, Cossu & Venditti, announced the addition of Nicolai to the firm this morning, saying “It is rare to find a person with Judge Nicolai’s depth and breadth of legal experience from his time in private practice, through his generous public service in many different judicial roles. We are delighted to have him as our new Senior Counsel.”

Nicolai, a former Coast Guard officer who served in Greenland, Italy and Vietnam, is a graduate of the United States Coast Guard Academy and New York Law School.

He was admitted to the Bar in New York in 1971, and after retiring from the Coast Guard, was in private practice from 1973 to 1982 in Westchester and Rockland Counties.

Nicolai was appointed by Governor Hugh Carey to an interim County Court Judgeship in 1982 and again in 1983. Elected to a full term on the Court in 1984, he became a Justice of the State Supreme Court from the Ninth Judicial District in 1990, representing Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, and Westchester Counties.

In December of 1998, Nicolai was appointed the Administrative Judge of the Ninth Judicial District. From 2009 until his recent retirement, Judge Nicolai was the Presiding Justice of the Appellate Term for the Ninth and Tenth Judicial Districts.

A lifelong resident of Westchester County, he and his wife Allene have three children.

As Senior Counsel to Gaines, Novick, Ponzini, Cossu & Venditti, Judge Nicolai will be available at the firm’s White Plains office, located at 11 Martine Avenue.