Gov. Christie has nominated Burlington County Freeholder Aimee Belgard, a Democrat who ran for a congressional seat last year, for a Superior Court judgeship.
Belgard, a trial lawyer for 14 years, served a three-year term on the Freeholder Board and last month lost her bid for reelection in a close race. Last year she ran to represent South Jersey's Third District, a seat that opened up when Republican Jon Runyan retired. Republican Tom MacArthur, a former mayor of Randolph, Morris County, won the seat.
Her nomination goes to the Senate for confirmation. A vote is expected this month.
Belgard could not be reached for comment.
Assignment Judge Ronald Bookbinder called Belgard "a quality trial lawyer" and said he was thankful to the governor, state senators, and party leaders for considering her for appointment as a judge.
"We hope that she is assigned by the chief justice to Burlington County," he said, saying his county's 17-judge vicinage has lost three judges to retirement and reassignment since July, and will lose Judge Marc Baldwin to retirement at the end of the month.
Belgard, 41, lives in Edgewater Park and previously was a member of the township committee. She obtained her law degree from Widener University in Delaware in 1999 after receiving a bachelor of science in environmental studies from what is now Stockton University. She worked for the Sweeney & Sheehan law firm in Westmont between 1999 and 2013, trying cases in Superior Court and filing appeals.
Belgard "represented a broad range of clients in employment, government, consumer fraud, construction, insurance coverage, personal injury and general civil liability matters," according to her resumé.