Joseph D. Coronato has been nominated by Gov. Chris Christie to become the new Ocean County prosecutor, pending state senate approval.
Coronato, a longtime Toms River resident and attorney, now with the firm of Coronato, Brady and Kunz, 12 Madison Ave., Toms River, would replace Marlene Lynch Ford, who was appointed by Gov. Jon Corzine in June 2007.
Coronato could not be reached for comment.
The nomination of Coronato was one of three nominations for three different county prosecutor positions made by Christie yesterday. The other two were: James P. McClain for Atlantic County Prosecutor and Frederic M. Knapp for Morris County Prosecutor.
Ford said on Friday afternoon that her five-year appointment expires on June 26, but that she would legally be required to continue in her role until a successor is appointed.
Ford, who lives in Toms River with her family, said she hopes to serve again in a public capacity.
When asked if that might involve a different gubernatorial appointment, she said, "I know that I may be considered for other positions that are appointed by the governor. But it would be presumptuous on my part to assume that will happen. Nothing has been offered to me. I'm hopeful there is an opportunity for me to serve the public in another capacity in the future. If not, I'll return to private practice."
Ford, a former state Assembly member, was nominated in 1992 by Gov. James Florio to be a Superior Court judge, according to her bio (see attached PDF) on the prosecutor's website.
She served in the family division for four years, and for ten years in the civil division. In 2006, she was appointed by Chief Justice Zazzali to be Presiding Judge of the Family Division.