In the news: Stephanie L. Everett
Governor Maura Healey has sworn in Stephanie L. Everett as the Suffolk Register of Probate and Family Court, the first Black person to hold the position.
Everett, a lawyer, had in the past represented families with cases before the court. She replaces Felix D. Arroyo, the former Boston councilor and patriarch of the political family, who announced his retirement in March. He was the court’s first Latino register.
“The Probate and Family Court is largely unknown to many Massachusetts residents —x until they need it,” Everett said in July. “As someone who has experienced the Court from both sides, as a young mother and as an attorney, I’m intimately familiar with the impact it can have on people’s lives, as well as the fear, frustration and confusion that families face far too often when interacting with the Court.”
Most recently, Everett was the first executive director of Boston’s Office of Police Accountability and Transparency, which a 2020 ordinance created as one of several police reforms.
Healey nominated Everett in July followed by the Governor’s Council confirming her appointment. She was sworn in August 16.
The Suffolk Probate and Family Court handles matters that involve families and children, such as adoption, divorce, child support and wills.
“Stephanie Everett is uniquely qualified to step into this position as she has interacted with the court as both a young mother and an attorney, and she has built an incredible career advocating for justice and equity for her community of Boston,” Healey said in July, adding that Everett “has the experience, professionalism, determination and empathy needed to serve the families, lawyers and staff that rely on the Court.”
Prior to her work with the city, Everett was a solo law practitioner for eight years. She served as the lead counsel in trials before criminal and juvenile court sessions and as a member of the Norfolk County Bar Advocate Program, accepting indigent clients facing criminal charges and families involved with the state Department of Children and Families.
Everett, a graduate of Northeastern University and Suffolk University Law School, is a member of the Massachusetts Black Lawyers Association.