Judge Polly Hoye announces her upcoming retirement

JOHNSTOWN — Republican Fulton County Court Judge-Surrogate Polly A. Hoye— who has served in that capacity nearly 20 years — announced this week she is not seeking relection to another 10-year term.

Her position on the bench will be up for grabs this year.

The 63-year-old Hoye is one of two Fulton County Court judges, the other being Judge Michael W. Smrtic, who was elected last fall.

In making her announcement, Hoye said she plans to retire from her judicial position, effective at the end of February. Hoye has held the position since 2002. Her position will be on the ballot this year.

Hoye was elected to the judgeship in 2001, having previously served as Fulton County district attorney from 1996 to 2001. Prior to that she was an assistant district attorney since 1989, and had served as Fulton County public defender and assistant public defender. She also had a private law practice, Hoye & Hoye Attorneys, with her late father, Theodore E. Hoye, Jr.

“It has been my honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Fulton County as county judge and surrogate for almost 20 years,” Hoye stated. “I have enjoyed working with the local attorneys and conducting trials with jurors over the years. I have been blessed to be supported by hard-working and talented staff in the courthouse. Fulton County and the court system are fortunate to have so many dedicated professionals who keep our courts functioning fairly and efficiently. I look forward to spending time with my family and enjoying other pursuits”.

Hoye has served as an acting county state Supreme Court justice since 2004, and served as the presiding judge of Fulton County’s Integrated Domestic Violence Court, which was created in 2005. She also served as president of the New York State Surrogates Association.

The judge attended Hobart and William Smith Colleges for her Bachelor of Arts and Albany Law School to earn her JD degree.

Hoye said Wednesday that she could have run for another 10-year term, but would have not been able to finish it, as the mandatory retirement age for judges is 70. She said this decision came with much thought.

“It’s been my intention for awhile to not seek another term,” she said. “I’ve been thinking about it. It’s been a decision that was a long time coming.”

Reflecting on her career, she added, “It’s been an honor and awesome. I’ve tried to do a good job.”

By -