Meet David Gandin

An experienced trial attorney and public defender, David is dedicated to protecting the legal rights of all citizens and has vast knowledge and understanding of both criminal and civil law. Since 2013, He has served as Principal Court Attorney for the Honorable Maria G. Rosa, State Supreme Court Judge, where he prepares legal opinions on a vast array of issues and presides over attorney conferences. 

After completing a federal appellate court clerkship, David started his litigation career as a public defender with the Legal Aid Society, where he spent seven years providing zealous representation to indigent clients. David later worked in private practice, representing clients in both criminal and civil cases, handling each case with the same focused attention that he brings to all of his endeavors. ​

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David’s additional public service includes working as the Principal Court Attorney for Judge Robert DiBella in Westchester County, as well as working with the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, and the Office of the Federal Public Defender and the United States Attorney's Office.

David also served as treasurer for the Gardiner Democratic Committee, teaches law as an adjunct professor at Marist College, is chair of the Town of Gardiner Zoning Board of Appeals, and serves on the Committee on Character and Fitness for the Third Judicial District.


David graduated summa cum laude from the Washington College of Law at American University in Washington, DC., and from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie. He and his wife, Patty, live in Gardiner with their four children.

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Values & Core Beliefs

A judge must apply the law in a just and impartial manner, treating every person -- regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, income or socioeconomic status -- with dignity and respect. Such impartiality, along with integrity and legal acumen, are vital to the fair administration of justice. My steadfast determination to provide equal justice for all, my dedication to public service, and my legal experience make me a uniquely qualified candidate for Supreme Court Judge.

Educational Background

I graduated from Vassar College with a degree in political science. After working in construction in Oregon and as a woodworker in North Carolina, I attended law school at the American University in Washington, DC. As a law student, I worked with both the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, the Office of the Federal Public Defender and the United States Attorney's Office for the District of Oregon, where I developed a passion for criminal law -- a passion that stems from my commitment to protecting constitutional rights and providing zealous advocacy to all individuals, regardless of income, race or ethnicity.

Extensive Courtroom Experience

After graduating from law school Summa Cum Laude in 1996, I spent two years in Richmond, Virginia performing legal research and writing more than 150 decisions for the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, a federal appellate court. At the end of my clerkship, I returned to New York to work as a public defender for the Legal Aid Society in Brooklyn. During the next seven years, I managed a large caseload representing indigent clients. I appeared in court almost every day and tried numerous jury trials to verdict. As a union attorney, I also worked 5:00pm to 1:00am arraignment shifts in the courthouse.

Following the birth of my oldest son, my wife and I moved to White Plains in Westchester County, where Supreme Court Justice Robert DiBella hired me as his Principal Court Attorney. In this capacity I wrote legal decisions, conducted settlement conferences with attorneys, counseled the judge and managed his chambers. We had a criminal and civil caseload and, again, I was in the courtroom nearly every day.  When my wife became pregnant with our second child, we knew we needed more room for our growing family and settled in Ulster County where we have lived for the past 13 years.

After moving to Ulster County, I worked for the law firm of Jacobowitz & Gubits in Walden as a civil and criminal litigator for 4½ years. While my practice was primarily in Orange, Ulster and Sullivan counties, I appeared and tried cases in courts everywhere from Queens to Albany. I litigated in justice court, family court, surrogate's court, county court, supreme court and in federal court in both the Southern and Northern Districts of New York. During this time I was a member of the Orange, Ulster and Dutchess County 18-B panels representing indigent clients charged with criminal offenses at both the trial and appellate level. The Ulster County Court also appointed me as a special prosecutor.​

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For the past eight years, I have served in the Dutchess County courthouse as the Principal Court Attorney to the Honorable Maria G. Rosa, the first Democrat elected to the state Supreme Court in Dutchess County since 1963. (By statute, judges elected to the New York State Supreme Court may hire a secretary and court attorney.) As her Principal Court Attorney, I manage Judge Rosa’s chambers and a caseload of more than 400 cases. I have written over 500 legal decisions, and have advised Judge Rosa on the disposition of thousands of motions. We handle a wide range of civil matters involving, among other areas, civil rights, negligence, medical malpractice, divorce (including custody and child support), foreclosure, prisoner's rights, land disputes, breach of contract, Article 78 proceedings, labor law and employment disputes, election law matters, and constitutional claims. I have developed the experience, knowledge, and expertise necessary for the just and effective adjudication of these types of matters.

Family & Community Involvement

On a more personal note, I am 50 years old and live with my wife, Patty, and our four children (ages 8,10,12 and 14) in Gardiner, NY.  I was a long time member of the Gardiner Democratic Committee and formerly served as its Treasurer. I teach law as an adjunct professor at Marist College, am the chair of the Town of Gardiner Zoning Board of Appeals and serve on the Committee on Character and Fitness for the Third Judicial District. I am a beekeeper, raise chickens, play upright bass and guitar, and love to explore the natural beauty of the Hudson Valley. I will bring to the Court a love for our region, strong values, and crucial experience.