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R.I. Governor Dan McKee makes 5 judicial nominations

The nominees, who still need to be confirmed by the Senate, are intended to fill vacancies in the Superior Court, Family Court, District Court, and Workers’ Compensation Court

PROVIDENCE — Governor Dan McKee on Tuesday made his first five judicial nominations.

McKee, who took office in March, picked nominees to fill vacancies in the Superior Court, Family Court, District Court and Workers’ Compensation Court. They’re all lifetime appointments. They’ll have to be confirmed by the Senate.

“It is an honor to appoint these five judges who will play a critical role in Rhode Island’s judicial system,” McKee said in a news release.

The nominees are:

Superior Court: Kevin F. McHugh

Kevin F. McHugh is a graduate of Rhode Island College, the University of Connecticut, and New England School of Law. He’s now the senior assistant city solicitor for the city of Providence, and legal counsel for the Special Legislation and Veterans Affairs committee in the state Senate. He lives in Providence. The seat opened up when Melissa A. Long got a seat on the state Supreme Court.

Family Court: Jeanine Perella McConaghy and Shilpa Naik


Jeanine Perella McConaghy is a graduate of Lawrence University and Suffolk University Law School. She’s now assistant attorney general and deputy chief of the criminal division, a board member of Foster Forward in Providence, and an adjunct professor at the University of Massachusetts School of Law. She lives in Barrington. The seat opened up with the retirement of Judge Rossie Lee Harris, Jr.

Shilpa Naik is a graduate of Brandeis University and Western New England University School of Law. She is the first Indian-Asian American to be nominated for the Family Court, McKee’s office said. She has worked in the Family Court since 2011 as a court-appointed special advocate, where she represents children who are in the Department of Children, Youth and Families system. She lives in Lincoln. The seat opened with the retirement of Judge Stephen J. Capineri.

District Court: William J. Trezvant


William J. Trezvant is a graduate of University of Rhode Island and the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William & Mary. He’s now senior counsel for Pannone Lopes Devereaux & O’Gara, and previously worked for 16 years in the attorney general’s office. He’s also involved in boards of community organizations, including the Narragansett Council Boy Scouts of America Scout Outreach Program and the Thurgood Marshall Law Society. He lives in Portsmouth. The seat opened with the retirement of Judge Madeline Quirk.

Workers’ Compensation Court: George J. Lazieh

George J. Lazie is a graduate of Roger Williams University and Suffolk University Law School. He serves as a bail commissioner for the state, teaches criminal and constitutional law-related courses at the Community College of Rhode Island, and was previously a special assistant attorney general. He also worked for 21 years in the Law Office of Steven B. Stein. He lives in Cumberland. The seat opened with the retirement of Judge Diane Connor.

Brian Amaral can be reached at brian.amaral@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @bamaral44.