MONTICELLO - John Ferrara, a well-known local attorney who recently closed his Monticello law firm in announcing his retirement, could be Sullivan County's next Acting District Attorney.
Three sources have confirmed to The Sullivan Times this week that Ferrara, 65, is now a candidate to take over the office once current DA Meagan Galligan is sworn in as a State Supreme Court judge at the Third Judicial Department come January. He would likely be hired as 1st Assistant District Attorney, one source said.
John Ferrara (photo from LinkedIn)
In a message to The SullivanTimes, Ferrara would only say that he would make a comment in a few weeks.
His law firm website now includes a farewell message and that he was retiring from law, but it's unclear when it was posted.
The Sullivan Times previously reported exclusively that Galligan - and her former boss Jim Farrell (now a County Court judge) - were trying to recruit White Lake attorney Jared Hart to be Acting DA.
District Attorney Meagan Galligan last week at Democratic rally in Hurleyville
Hart, previously asked about his interest, declined to comment in May. The SullivanTimes again reached out to Hart (via email) for comment on Wednesday based on the new information but has not yet received a reply. One source said that Hart politely declined the offer because he has a successful private practice that also allows him time with his family.
A separate source familiar with the office said that Galligan has struggled to retain assistant district attorneys since she was sworn in as DA in January 2021 - and that is likely why she has sought someone from the outside to replace her.
That's backed up by the departure during her tenure of Robert Zangla, her former chief assistant DA who is now working for the County Attorney and who took a significant pay cut to work for County Attorney Michael McGuire. Former ADA Kristin Hackett left the District Attorney's Office at the end of May 2021 (after nearly four years of service) - and then joined the County Attorney's Office in June of that year, according to her LinkedIn profile.
Among other departures, Galligan also lost ADA Leigh Wellington, who left in July 2021 to join the Westchester County District Attorney's Office.