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JUDGE FARAH Farah’s practice grew over the years to the point that he started handling more and more appellate work. It was this extensive experience and exposure to the Court of Appeals and the Michigan Supreme Court that led Farah to a judicial career. “I probably argued in the Court of Appeals 40 times as an attorney, and drafted over 100 briefs,” calculated Farah. “I believe it was this work that was the most relevant experience in guiding me to the bench.” In 1998, Farah was appointed to Genesee County’s 7th Judicial Circuit Court where he was assigned to the family division. During his seven years in the family division, Farah handled domestic and juvenile cases. Since 2005, Farah has presided over cases in the court’s civil and criminal division.

DEVOTED COMMUNITY MEMBER Born and raised in Flint, Judge Farah has seen the good and the bad times. Yet despite the city’s ups and downs, Farah remains committed to his hometown. “I had my opportunities to leave the area, but at the same time I enjoyed what I was doing in Flint,” said Farah. “I like the area, and continuing to live and work here doesn’t mean that I couldn’t travel to other areas.” As a judge and longtime community member, Farah has seen the struggles of Flint first-hand. “Back in the 1970s, Flint had three times the automotive manufacturing jobs as we do now,” remembered Farah. “And public schools had more then 40,000 students compared to 10,000 today. We have seen the difficulties that hard times can bring about. The water crisis is one of them. We have difficulties with the government sometimes in our area. We were under an emergency manager for a while and that presented a lot of challenges. The resources just aren’t there like they used to be.”

Joseph Farah with longtime companion Andrea LeGendre (right) and her daughter Alexandrea

But through the tough times, Farah doesn’t believe anyone should give up on Flint.

“It’s sad to see the struggles in Flint, but there’s no time for despair, no time for the doldrums. You just keep marching ahead, knowing two things resolutely in your mind. First, Flint will never be the same as it was and, second, we will make it better than it is.” JUDGE JOSEPH J. FARAH


Benchmark | Winter 2016