ITHACA, N.Y. — Mayor Svante Myrick has endorsed Seth Peacock for Ithaca City Court Judge.

“I believe that Seth is the right person for this seat,” Myrick said in a Facebook live video on June 16. “He’s the right person to lead the court at this moment, and that going to vote for him now is one piece of a much larger necessary puzzle if we’re going to achieve justice here in the City of Ithaca with our system.” 

Myrick has shown his support for Peacock in the past by appointing him city court judge on an interim basis twice, once in 2014 and again in 2019, to fill a vacancy left by now-County Judge Scott Miller. Peacock is currently one of the two city court judges.

Myrick praised Peacock’s engagement with the community, from coaching youth to serving on the board of the Ithaca City School District. He said that Peacock has matured over his career as a lawyer and has successfully run Ithaca’s first Wellness and Recovery Court.

Peacock is the first and only person of color to serve on the bench in the Sixth Judicial District

Peacock has garnered a number of other endorsements, including over 40 Ithaca attorneys; Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, chair of the Tompkins Legislature and J.R. Clairborne, former City of Ithaca common council member; Cornell University professor emeritus Richard Talman; executive director of the Greater Ithaca Activities Center Travis Brooks; member of the Tompkins County Human Rights Commission Kathleen Bergin; and common council members Deborah Mohlenhoff, Cynthia Brock, and George McGonigal.

The city court judge position is a 10-year term, which will begin January 1, 2021. Dan Johnson, Tompkins County assistant district attorney, is running against Peacock.

“I am grateful for his steady support especially regarding those areas and issues that we are both concerned with like Ithaca Wellness and Recovery Court and alternatives to incarceration,” Peacock said. “We also share the belief that a strong connection to the entire Ithaca community is a necessary characteristic of an effective judge. I also agree that having a representative judiciary enhances the legal system’s legitimacy.”

New York State is holding its primary elections for state and local offices on June 23. Eligible voters can vote via absentee ballot due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and those ballots must be postmarked by June 23. Voters can also cast their ballot in person during early voting from June 13 to June 21, and in-person voting will take place on June 23. Other elections on the democratic primary City of Ithaca ballot are for the New York State 125th Assembly District, as well as Tompkins County district attorney.

Madison Fernandez

Madison Fernandez is a contributing reporter at the Ithaca Voice. You can reach her by email at mfernandez@ithacavoice.com.