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New Jersey Appoints New ABC Director

NJ Division of ABC Liquor License Lawyers

From the Desk of New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal:

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal today announced that Governor Murphy will nominate attorney James B. Graziano to serve as the Director of the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control (“ABC”), the state agency with oversight over of the manufacturing, distribution, and sale of alcoholic beverages throughout the state.

Graziano is a founding partner of Graziano, Piasecki & Whitelaw in Green Brook, where he specializes in civil litigation involving personal injury and employment claims. He also serves as a municipal court judge in Metuchen Borough and formerly served as the attorney for the Metuchen Parking Authority.

“James is a seasoned civil litigator and experienced municipal judge whose legal background makes him an excellent candidate to lead the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control,” said Attorney General Grewal. “The ABC interacts extensively with businesses and municipalities across New Jersey in regulating and enforcing the state’s liquor laws, and James’ practice of law both on and off the bench make him uniquely qualified to carry out those duties.”

After graduating with honors from Rutgers University, Cook College, with a B.S. in Environmental Studies, Graziano attended Rutgers University School of Law in Camden, where he served as Notes and Comments Editor of the Rutgers Camden Law Journal. 
After earning his law degree, Graziano clerked for the Honorable John C. Demos, A.J.S.C. in Middlesex County before beginning his legal practice as an associate with the firm of Psak & Parker in Middlesex.

Graziano lives with his wife in Middlesex County, where he has served his community as a volunteer firefighter and emergency management coordinator.

As ABC Director, Graziano will oversee compliance among the more than 9,000 licensees who manufacture, distribute, sell, and serve alcoholic beverages in the state. He will also oversee the investigations of violations of the ABC law, which are conducted by the ABC’s Investigations Bureau.

“It is an honor to be appointed to lead the Division. Alcohol regulation has important public safety and economic implications,” said Graziano. “I look forward to working with the Attorney General, the members of the Division and industry representatives to advance the legislative objectives of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act.”

Graziano will begin serving as Acting Director of the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control on November 26. Governor Murphy will formally nominate Graziano to the position, which is subject to the advice and consent of the State Senate.

He will succeed David P. Rible, who has served as the Director of the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control since July 2017. He is leaving the Department of Law and Public Safety to pursue new opportunities.

“I want to thank Director Rible for his leadership and public service. As Director, as an assemblyman, and as a police officer, Dave has dedicated his career to faithfully serving the people of this State, and to that end, we owe him our thanks.” said Attorney General Grewal.

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