Dartmouth’s Joseph Michaud Nominated to State Housing Court
STATE HOUSE, BOSTON — Judicial nominees usually come in dribs and drabs but Gov. Charlie Baker on Tuesday offered a wave of picks for the state Housing Court.
One of the nominees, Joseph Michaud, is from Dartmouth.
The governor put forward five nominees for newly-created seats on the court, which hears eviction cases, small claims cases, civil action suits, and others related to residential housing.
Baker nominated Michaud, along with Irene Bagdoian of Westborough, to serve on the court's Metro South Division.
Michaud has served on active duty in the U.S. Army intermittently for the last 30 years as a lieutenant colonel in the Judge Advocates General Corps, the governor's office said. He runs his own practice and focuses on residential and commercial real estate transactions and landlord-tenant matters. He serves as chairman of the South Coast Chamber of Commerce in New Bedford and can often be found playing bass guitar in a local band, the administration said. Michaud is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Sam Houston State University and the Franklin Pierce Law Center at the University of New Hampshire.
Gustavo del Puerto of Salem was nominated to serve on the court's Northeastern Division, while Donna Salvidio of Worcester and Neil Sherring of Westwood to serve as circuit justices.
If confirmed, Baker's nominees would represent a 50 percent expansion of the court. His administration proposed the expansion in the fiscal year 2018 budget to expand its jurisdiction across the state. Baker's office said the expansion will extend the court's jurisdiction to an additional million people in southern Middlesex County, Norfolk County and the Cape and Islands. The court currently has 10 confirmed judges.
"We are proud to nominate a diverse slate of candidates with the experience to join our expanded Housing Court that will now serve the entire Commonwealth," Baker said in a statement. "These attorneys have each spent over two decades practicing law in Massachusetts and if confirmed by the Governor's Council, they will ready for their new positions during this important transformation of the Court."
All five nominations Baker made Tuesday are subject to confirmation by the eight-member Governor's Council, which will first hold a hearing on each nominee.
--Colin A. Young with Michael P. Norton contributing, State House News Service