There is once again considerable speculation that state Attorney General Paula Dow will leave her post to become a judge, and Gov. Chris Christie’s chief counsel Jeff Chiesa will supplant her as the Christie Administration’s new attorney general.
A close confidante of Christie’s, Chiesa forged the trust factor with Christie going back to their time in the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Chiesa served from 2002 – 2009, last serving as the executive assistant U.S. attorney. He also served as Counsel to the U.S. Attorney.
A former member of the powerful and political influential Wolff & Samson law firm, Chiesa was in charge of Christie’s transition team in 2009.
There are questions as to whether the judgeship for Dow would be superior or supreme.
The state’s first African-American woman to serve as attorney general, Dow occupied the post for two years. Her cases involving elected officials included the successful prosecution of former Perth Amboy Mayor Joe Vas and arrest (and ongoing prosecution) of former Middlesex County Sheriff Joe Spicuzzo.
Also a veteran of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, where, like Chiesa, she served as Christie’s counsel, Dow served as the Essex County Prosecutor prior to Christie choosing her as his Attorney General.
Sources anticipate that Kevin O’Dowd, deputy chief counsel to Christie, would likely move up to fill the chief counsel chair vacated by Chiesa. Another source said the transition has already begun.
Dow told PolitickerNJ in April that she was not planning an exit from her post.