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York Alum to Step Down from Queens Supreme Court

York College distinguished alumnus George Grasso has announced he will step down from the Queens Supreme Court.

Succeeding another York alum, Jeremy Weinstein, Judge Grasso started his tenure as administrative judge for Queens County Supreme Court, Criminal Term in 2021. He came to the role with an enviable swath of experience from beat cop to previous role as a judge.

Starting as an NYPD officer right after graduating from York College in spring 1980, George Grasso has served the city of New York with distinction and made his undergraduate alma mater proud in every iteration of his magnificent career. 

He has never failed to honor York for its role in his life and never failed to serve as a proud alum when and where needed. He served on the college's Foundation Board, the Alumni Association, the Fiftieth Anniversary Planning Committee and always willing to help students. Indeed, just this spring he went below the college level by serving as keynote speaker during career day at the Queens High School of Science on York's campus. 

As First Deputy NYPD Commissioner during the Bloomberg Administration, he even made time to come to the campus to save a York Journalism student from the inconvenience of going to 1 Police Plaza to interview him for a "Pandora's Box" article on his appointment. 

"'I used to be an editor on "Pandora's Box" in my student days,'" he told the young reporter. "So when [the student newspaper] is on deadline, I have to show up.'" 

That is the quality human and alum Judge Grasso is and he showed his highest compliment when he enrolled his son Joseph at York to be mentored by his own former mentor, Dr. Shirley Ostholm.

It worked out, with the younger Grasso going on to law school and is now an assistant district attorney. ADA Grasso has since paid it forward by coming in to encourage students in his old department and beyond. As a student, he too wrote for the college's newspaper and was an active theater performer in preparation for the courtroom. His parents never missed an opening night and it was always a delight to see them enjoying these college productions.

"He is not retiring but is looking to what more he can do about crime," said Dr. Ostholm of Judge Grasso, following the announcement. "George has always been a reformer, and makes things better wherever he is working." 

York wishes Judge Grasso the very best in his next career move and thanks him for always remembering his roots with us. 

Top Queens judge to retire