Noach Dear, 66, Jurist, Politician and Advocate for Orthodox Jewry
Brooklyn Supreme Court Judge Noach Dear, who was a strong voice for Israel and Orthodox Jewry while on the City Council for nearly two decades, died on April 19.
A long-time member of the City Council, he held a seat representing Bensonhurst, Borough Park, Midwood and Ocean Parkway from 1983 to 2001 before becoming a judge.
Mayor Bill de Blasio Tweeted, “He had a fighting spirit and always put his constituents first.”
He was an outspoken opponent of Mayor Dinkins, whom he maintained had allowed the onslaught on the Jewish community in Crown Heights in 1991 when a black child died after being hit by a vehicle driven by a Lubavitcher. An Orthodox Jew from Australia was murdered in the violence that followed.
In a later mayoral election, Dear, a Democrat, crossed lines to endorse Rudy Giuliani in 1993 against Dinkins, who lost. He also raised funds for Bill Clinton and Al Gore.
Dear attended Yeshiva Torah Vodaath in Brooklyn.
He graduated from Brooklyn College in 1975, earned a master’s degree in social work from Wurzweiler School of Social Work in 1977, and a JD from Brooklyn Law School in 1991.
He started out as a district leader of Community Board 12 in Brooklyn. On the City Council, he led the Transportation Committee. He opposed a civil rights bill preventing discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in employment and housing.
In 1998 he ran for Charles Schumer’s former House seat in a race that Anthony Weiner won. In 2001, Dear was term limited out and he sought election to the State Senate but lost in that election during 2002.
He became Commissioner of the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission in 2002.
He became a civil court judge in 2008 and in 2015 was elected to a 15-year term as Permanent Justice on the New York Supreme Court.
He is survived by his wife Rickly Dear and four daughters.