Javerbaum Wurgaft
Hicks Kahn Wikstrom & Sinins, P.C.


Former Judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Joseph S. Conte, is Of Counsel to the Hackensack office of Javerbaum Wurgaft. He concentrates his practice on mediation, land use cases, and commercial real estate matters.

Judge Conte brings with him over three decades of experience as a trial lawyer, advisor, mediator, arbitrator and as a judge.

In his 20 year career as a Superior Court Judge, he has decided on several significant cases in both civil and criminal divisions. He presided over a range of civil jury trials and cases including personal injury, medical malpractice, professional malpractice and employment discrimination. He also managed and presided over a significant number of criminal cases including four death penalty cases and over 25 murder cases.

When new legislation was passed for Sexually Violent Predator cases, Judge Conte was the first and only Judge assigned for the entire state of New Jersey.

He was also the designated Prerogative Writs Judge for the Bergen vicinage, where he heard numerous high profile cases pertaining to land development and Municipal and County government actions.

During his tenure as a Judge, he participated in annual lectures and seminars to judges and lawyers on topics pertaining to jury selection in both civil and criminal cases and the topics in connection with land use. He has also attended seminars conducted by the National Judicial Society at Stanford Law School, University of Virginia Law School, and Brooklyn Law School, and participated in numerous programs for the National Judicial College and the American Jurisprudence Society in various locations across the country.

Prior to his appointment to the Superior Court in 1993, Judge Conte was engaged in the practice of law in Paramus, NJ. He served as a municipal court judge for the municipalities of Ringwood, Upper Saddle River, Wallington and Rochelle Park. He also served as a Public Defender for the Borough of Paramus, attorney for the Paramus library board and Special Borough Attorney for the Borough of Ringwood.

Judge Conte took on several public service posts. Most recently he was appointed as an advisor to the Instituto de Seguridad y Proteccion of the Sistema Universitario Ana G. Mendez. He provided services including guidance, discipline or supervision, educational programs to improve the current training and future sufficient or appropriate training of the Puerto Rican Police Department, to eliminate civil rights violations that were identified in a report of the United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division dated September 5, 2011 (investigation of the Puerto Rico Police Department) and other counseling to improve the department.

Judge Conte’s long and extensive experience in real estate, land use, planning boards, and boards of adjustment has established him as a leading authority which remains a focus of his private practice of law.

As an attorney, Judge Conte’s practice was devoted to residential and commercial real estate. He served as the Bank Review Attorney for National Community Bank for commercial mortgages in excess of two million dollars. He also served as Bank Review Attorney for United Jersey bank for commercial loans and mortgages. As part of his practice, he was involved in representing clients before Planning Boards and Boards of Adjustment. Judge Conte served as Registered Agent and Attorney for Home Depot for the State of New Jersey. He also represented and presented applications for such national and local companies as Home Depot, Costco, Wendy’s, Toy R Us, Kids R Us, KFC, Grand Union, Cali Associates (now Mack-Cali), Century 21 Developers, Prestige Motors, Tower Records, Budget Rent-A-Car and Mandarin Development.

Judge Conte is a graduate of the University of Dayton with a degree in Accounting and a graduate of Cleveland University Marshall. Judge Conte is admitted to practice in New Jersey and is licensed to practice in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey and the United States Supreme Courts.

Court Affiliations

  • Ohio Supreme Court
  • New Jersey Supreme Court
  • United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
  • Supreme Court of the United States

Bar Admissions

  • New Jersey Supreme Court
  • Ohio Supreme Court
  • United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
  • Supreme Court of the United States

Professional and Civic Organizations

  • Bergen County Bar Association
  • New Jersey State Bar Association
  • Past President, Paramus Rotary Club
  • Past President, Garfield Rotary Club
  • Past Vice-President, New Jersey Jaycees
  • Past President, Paramus Chamber of Commerce
  • Past President, Paramus Boys Club
  • Former Board Member, Columbian Club, Bergen County, NJ Chapter
  • Former Board Member, American Red Cross, Ridgewood, NJ Chapter
  • Chairperson of Fund Raising- “Raise the Roof” New Building
  • Chairperson, 1st Grand Ball
  • Co-Chairperson, Annual Golf Outing