After practicing law for the past 20 years, lifelong Union City resident Mark Nelson will be sworn in as a Superior Court judge on March 28 at the Brennan Court House in Jersey City. Nelson didn't always know he wanted to be a lawyer. "It's just something that happened," he said last week. "I didn't always know, but the interest really came on in college, when I thought law could be interesting." Nelson graduated from Ramapo College in New Jersey and received his Masters of Law degree from Western New England College in Springfield, Massachusetts. Nelson is a senior and managing partner of Nelson and Walrod, Esqs., a law firm on the corner of 47th Street and Kennedy Boulevard that concentrates on litigation and trial work. Nelson and Melvin Kracov, a West New York resident and counsel to the U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey, were nominated by Gov. Christie Whitman to be Superior Court judges. Kracov said recently that he could not discuss specifics, but that he was delighted and humbled by the governor's confidence in him. Kracov has been practicing law for 28 years and received his law degree from St. John's University School of Law in Brooklyn, New York. He earned his law degree from New York University's School of Law in Manhattan. He has also served in the U.S. Attorney's Office as deputy chief, and senior counsel and executive assistant to the U.S. Attorney. Kracov will be sworn in at the same location and on the same date as Nelson. "I will try to do my best to serve the citizens of Hudson County," Kracov said. "The goal of every trial lawyer is to someday have the role of a judge." Probably will serve in JC Nelson said he was recommended to the governor by one of three local legislators, but was not sure which one. "It's not that someone will just come to you," Nelson said. "You have to express some interest." This can be done, he said, by mentioning one's interest in becoming a judge and trial experience to colleagues. Nelson said he was told that he will most likely be serving at the Jersey City court house location in the civil division, which addresses grievances between landlords and tenants, among other civil issues. Nelson admitted that while he is proud of such an achievement, he has mixed emotions about leaving his current workplace. "It feels rewarding to some extent, and satisfying because it says something about your career to have someone recommend me to the governor," Nelson said, "but I'm going to miss the people in Union City. I know Union City, I've been a lifelong resident, and although I don't have to physically move, I'll be leaving this office. I'd like to stay here. If I had a choice, I would have chosen to go to Jersey City because it's still in the area. It's easier knowing the community. I've always enjoyed Union City and I think the lawyers here treat each other with respect and that's not always the case." Superior Court judges serve seven years, after which the senate reviews them. If the senate is satisfied in its review, Superior Court judges will then receive tenure. Nelson said a Superior Court judge can expect to make a yearly income of $133,000. He added that Hudson County has about 30 Superior Court judges serving in the juvenile and adult criminal division and in the family and civil division.