Gov. Charlie Baker nominated Joseph E. Kelleher, III and Alexander Mitchell-Munevar as Associate Justices of the Housing Court last week.
Attorneys Kelleher and Mitchell-Munevar have more than 40 years of combined legal experience.
“The many cases pertaining to housing tried by Attorneys Kelleher and Mitchell-Munevar have prepared them well to serve as Associate Justices of the Housing Court,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “I am pleased to submit these qualified candidates to the Governor’s Council for their advice and consent.”
The Housing Court Department is a statewide court with jurisdiction over civil and criminal actions, including equitable relief, which involve the health, safety, or welfare of the occupants or owners of residential housing. The Court hears summary process (eviction) cases, small claims cases, and civil actions involving personal injury, property damage, breach of contract, discrimination, and other claims. The Housing Court also hears code enforcement actions and appeals of local zoning board decisions that affect residential housing. The Housing Court has 15 judges authorized to serve its 6 divisions – Central, Eastern, Northeast, Southeast, Western, and Metro South – and conducts sessions in over 20 locations every week. If confirmed by the Governor’s Council, Attorney Kelleher will fill the seat vacated by the Honorable Ann Chaplin, and Attorney Mitchell-Munevar will fill the seat vacated by the Honorable Fairlie Dalton.
Judicial nominations are subject to the advice and consent of the Governor’s Council. Applicants for judicial openings are reviewed by the Judicial Nominating Commission (JNC) and recommended to the governor. Governor Baker established the JNC in February 2015 pursuant to Executive Order 558, a non-partisan, non-political Commission composed of volunteers from a cross-section of the Commonwealth’s diverse population to screen judicial applications. Twenty-one members were later appointed to the JNC in April 2015.