Recovery Court Recognizes Graduates

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From left, Assignment Judge Julio L. Mendez, Recovery Court Judge Mark Sandson and Stockton University President Harvey Kesselman. Sandson received the university’s Partner of the Year award in June 2019. (Courtesy of Stockton University)

The Atlantic/Cape May Vicinage recognized the successes of 42 Atlantic County graduates of its Recovery Court Program during two virtual ceremonies on Tuesday.

The graduates, along with their friends and families, treatment providers and court staff, were scheduled to attend the ceremonies.

The Recovery Court team, led by Superior Court Judge Mark Sandson and staffed by court personnel, attorneys, probation officers, substance abuse evaluators, and treatment professionals, has continued to support the participants’ recovery during the COVID-19 crisis.

“Our total graduating class for 2020 is 88. The graduating class size reflects the enormous growth of our program, and further reflects the enormity of the substance abuse catastrophe impacting Atlantic County and our state,” Sandson said. “These graduates have achieved sobriety and employment. They are prepared for a life as positive family members, role models and citizens. All of them have embraced the concepts of honesty and recovery.”

The ceremonies were expected to include encouraging words from Sandson and Superior Court Assignment Judge Julio Mendez as they recognized the graduates’ journeys from addiction to recovery.

The ceremonies also marked Sandson’s last group of Recovery Court graduates as he approaches retirement in November. During his four-year tenure as Recovery Court judge, he has made transformative changes in the program.