Judge Andrea Sabita Ogle was officially inducted into the Civil Court of the City of New York, one year after making history as the first ever biracial, and the first woman, and Guyanese-born, nominated by the Queens Democratic Party, chaired by Congressman Gregory Meeks.
Judge Ogle, who was supported by a packed court room of colleagues, some retired, friends and family, placed her hand on the bible held by her mother, Ivy Ogle, and joined by Nigel Ogle and Dr. Kevin Ogle as the judicial oath was conducted by Honorable Edwina Richardson-Mendelson, in Queens County Civil Court, on Sutphin Boulevard, last Friday.
Simone-Marie Meeks introduced the inductee.
Judge Ogle who realized an extraordinary American dream to become an attorney, successfully managing her own law practice in Queens County for more than 20 years and served as a member of the Attorneys for Children and 18b Assigned Counsel Panels, representing indigent adults and children in Family and Supreme Court proceedings since 1999, after being robed, thanked the Queens community for placing their trust and confidence in her.
With an outstanding record in the judicial system, deserving of her many accolades, Judge Ogle, who has written on issues including the 13thAmendment, bail representation of the indigent, and has organized Continuing Legal Education Seminars for attorneys on various topics, including the new “Raise the Age” legislation, said she was grateful for the support, and thanked her beloved family and parents for the sacrifices they made to help her achieve the American dream.
“Thank you to the Queens County Democratic Party, the Queens County Executive Committee, the District Leaders, elected officials and each club for your mentorship, guidance, and confidence,” said Judge Ogle, adding.
“Our borough is one that has its greatest strength in our communities, in our diversity and in our ability to seamlessly blend virtues, such as civil engagement, hard work and inclusion, making Queens County much richer and a model for the world.”
Congressman Meeks, said he was proud of all judges, noting that America’s strongest institution is the judicial system, as exemplified in Judge Ogle.
“Thank you for being a leader in our community. Thank you for making the sacrifice you made as an attorney to make things better in our communities. Thank you for being the judge you are, but most important, thank you for never forgetting who you are, where you came from, who helped you get here, and wanting to make a difference,” he said of Judge Ogle.
Queens Borough President, Donovan Richards described Judge Ogle as a distinguished public servant who is resilient and persistent. He said those who administer justice need to possess the best qualities of the borough. Empathy, fairness, hard work, service, and respect. “I am pleased that Judge Ogle has all these qualities.”
“She’s a Guyanese immigrant, she’s a Queens story, a woman, a public servant, a volunteer, and most importantly, she’s from Queens,” said BP Richards. Assemblywoman Jennifer Rajkumar, in turn called Judge Ogle, a trailblazer, and a tireless advocate for justice.
“We welcome her into our esteemed fold of judges. Her journey from Guyana to this momentous induction ceremony is filled with determination, resilience, and grit. From her early years in Guyana to her rigorous legal education in New York, she has displayed an unwavering commitment to the rule of law in pursuit of justice and has been a beacon for all of us in this community, she illuminates a path for us to follow,” said Assemblywoman Rajkumar.
Judge Ogle, who is inspired by the work of Justice Thurgood Marshall, the Supreme Court’s first African American justice who said, “we will only attain freedom if we learn to appreciate what is different and muster the courage to discover what is fundamentally the same,” was described as persistent, and focused by New York State Senator Leroy Comrie.
“Judge Ogle is always fighting for impoverished people, indigent families, and those who don’t have representation. She is fighting for women to get into positions of power and for people to be respected,” he said.
“Andrea will pay it forward, and keep the will of justice clean and pure, and will never let us down,” said Sen. Comrie.
Consul General of Guyana to New York, Ambassador Michael E. Brotherson, applauded Judge Ogle, on behalf of the Guyana government, and congratulated her outstanding achievements, noting that Guyanese have their place in the United States, and her successes reflect that of immigrants in general.
A congratulatory letter from Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs of Guyana, Mohabir Anil Nandall, was also read.
Other speakers included District Leader 39th Assembly District I. Daneek Miller, Ali Najmi, Esq. president, The South Asian and Indo-Caribbean Bar Association of Queens, Deborah A. Kaplan, Deputy Chief Administrative Judge of the New York City Courts, District Leader 29th Assembly District, and Pamela Bluford, during the proceedings emceed by Guyanese-born, Supervising Judge Shababudeen A. Ally.
New York State Senator Roxanne Persaud, Queens Democratic District Leader, District 31, Richard David, Adreena Ogle-Crawford, Alexander Ogle, Dr. William Ogle who did the robing, and other community leaders attended the celebration that opened with a procession and presentation of colors by the NY State Court Officers Honor Guard.
A reception, accompanied by the music of Angels Caribbean Entertainment Group of Companies, Amar Bisram and Geeta Bisram, celebrated Judge Ogle, while Sybil’s Bakery, Richmond Hill provided Guyanese food.