St. Lawrence County Surrogate Court Judge Richey to retire Feb. 17
CANTON – The Hon. John F. Richey, Surrogate Judge of St. Lawrence County will retire on Feb. 17.
Richey has served as Surrogate Court judge since taking office in January 2015, following an election campaign in which he ran unopposed. During his time on the bench, in addition to his Surrogate's Court duties, Judge Richey has regularly handled matters in County Court and Family Court in both St. Lawrence and Franklin Counties.He was also appointed an Acting Justice of the Supreme Court, and as such, was assigned at various times foreclosure and matrimonial proceedings.
Richey indicated he was proud of the way his office addressed the prior two years.
"In December of 2019, Judge Richards retired, and I was assigned the day-to-day operations of County Court in addition to my other duties. Then the Covid crisis occurred adding another layer of difficulties to the proper administration of the courts. I never could have handled the case load without the diligent and dedicated work of my staff, particularly my Principal Court Attorney Michelle Ladouceur,” stated Richey.
Richey is originally from Massena, and graduated from both LeMoyne College and the Syracuse University College of Law (where he was a member of the Law Review). After a brief period of private practice, he commenced his career with the Unified Court System in 1989, working as a Court Attorney to his predecessor in office, the Hon. Kathleen Rogers. He continued as her Principal Court Attorney until his election to the bench. As this was initially a part-time position with Judge Rogers, he also worked for five years as Court Attorney to the Hon. Robert G. Main, Jr. of Franklin County.
During this time, he was elected and served for 10 years as the Town Judge and Acting Village Judge of Massena. He is a past President of the St. Lawrence County Bar Association; past President of the St. Lawrence County Magistrates Association, and was a long-time instructor at the David Sullivan Police Academy.
He was also a frequent instructor for Town and Village Judge Training, and taught various Continuing Legal Education classes for attorneys. He served as a member of the SUNY Canton Legal Studies Advisory Board, and most recently chaired a state-wide committee on court attorney pay disparity for the Office of Court Administration.