The newest justice on the bench in Rockland County is Djinsad Desir who was sworn in on Monday at the Ramapo Cultural Arts Center.
Desir was the youngest of three candidates in the race for Spring Valley Justice who lost the Democratic primary election on Sept. 10 by one absentee ballot. He later won the general election on Nov. 5 with more than 1,000 votes and unseated an incumbent, the Honorable Susan Smith.
“People vote because it's their duty, not because they feel it affects the election. If you're in it, you have to fight to try to win,” said Desir who is also a litigation associate at Vernon & Ginsburg LLP in New York City.
Desir is one of a few Haitian-American Seventh-day Adventists to hold an elected office which included former U.S. Representative Ronald Brise of the 108th district in Florida. His term will expire in 2017.
“Your faith really is the foundation for compassion and the sense of fairness that you need on the bench. I want to see human beings first rather than defendants,” said Desir.