Gattari-Ross settles into court admin, magistrate duties

By: Brian Louwers | Warren Weekly | Published June 1, 2018

 Annette Gattari-Ross is sworn in as the 37th District Court’s new magistrate this spring. She worked as an assistant Warren city attorney for 23 years before she became the court administrator in October.

Annette Gattari-Ross is sworn in as the 37th District Court’s new magistrate this spring. She worked as an assistant Warren city attorney for 23 years before she became the court administrator in October.

Photo provided by the 37th District Court

WARREN — Annette Gattari-Ross spent 23 years handling Warren’s legal needs and representing the taxpayers collectively in court as an assistant city attorney. Now, as a court administrator and magistrate, it’s her job to ensure that the 37th District Court functions smoothly.

Gattari-Ross took over as the court administrator in October after the departure of Rob Curtis. In January, she was appointed as a magistrate, and she was officially sworn in in April upon completion of a list of educational and procedural requirements.

“The judge approached me about taking this job on. I enjoyed my work at the City Attorney’s Office. It was great work, but it was nice to be asked and to enter another chapter, into working with the court in a different capacity,” Gattari-Ross said.

By statute, her appointment required approval from the Warren City Council. That came unanimously on Jan. 23.

As a court administrator, Gattari-Ross works with the court’s administrative team to develop budgets, assess resources and needs, and ensure that the day-to-day operations are managed effectively.

As a magistrate, she presides over informal hearings, handles arraignments and assists with many duties handled by the court’s four judges.

Chief Judge John Chmura, who administered the oath of office for Gattari-Ross in April, said having two magistrates — attorney Roger Trimm serves as a magistrate on Wednesday mornings, when the judges hear cases in Center Line on a rotational basis — will help keep cases moving efficiently at one of the state’s busiest district courts.

According to points outlined in Warren’s budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year, the 37th District Court processed 63,000 new cases in 2017. That included 41,483 traffic cases, 2,018 felonies and 1,563 misdemeanors, as well as 609 small claims, 5,792 general civil and 4,617 landlord/tenant matters.

“Her experience is very valuable. She knows the procedures and how things are handled and required, in that respect, really no training,” Chmura said. “She’s done an absolutely fantastic job since she’s been here. She’s on top of everything and is working well with the judges and the staff. I couldn’t be more pleased with the job she’s done.”

Chmura said Gattari-Ross will be tasked with managing the continued transition to a paperless filing system, which he said will make the court more efficient.

“I’m enjoying it very much. I’m learning a lot, and it’s a nice change after 23 years in the City Attorney’s Office, which I did enjoy. My focus right now is doing my best job as a court administrator,” Gattari-Ross said.