Francine I. Axelrad, P.J.A.D., retired, on recall.
Appointed to the Tax Court in 1993, Judge Francine I. Axelrad also served a four-year assignment in the Family Division of Superior Court in Vicinage 15 (Gloucester, Cumberland and Salem Counties), handling a variety of cases in the other Superior Court divisions, and tax court cases, before being elevated to the Appellate Division, Superior Court in 2000. She became one of eight presiding judges in the Appellate Division in September 2007. She published 23 opinions as a trial judge and published 94 opinions on the Appellate Division. She retired on September 1, 2013. She returned to the Camden County Superior Court as a recall judge on March 10, 2014.
Judge Axelrad graduated magna cum laude from Connecticut College, where she was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. She earned her law degree at Rutgers University School of Law-Camden. She began her legal career in private practice and served as director of the Department of Law for Cherry Hill before her appointment to the bench. She also served as a Municipal Court public defender and zoning board solicitor.
Throughout her career as a lawyer and judge, Judge Axelrad has been a lecturer at various bar association and judicial education programs and professional symposiums. She was appointed to the Supreme Court Committee on Women in the Courts in 1996 and served as its Chairperson from 2002 to 2012. She was appointed to the Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Access and Fairness in the Courts in 2009, and served as Vice-Chair until 2012. She was also appointed to the Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Judicial Financial Reporting in 2002, and was appointed an Appellate Division Domestic Security Review Judge in 2003; in both instances she served until her retirement. She has served on the Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Extrajudicial Activities since 2016.
Judge Axelrad is a former Trustee of the Camden County Bar Association, remains active in various committees, and is the 2020 recipient of the Hon. Peter J. Devine, Jr. Award. She also serves as a judge for the State Bar Association High School Mock Trial Competition and Elementary and Middle School Trial programs. She is a former Chancellor of the Rutgers University - Camden Alumni Association, a recipient of the Nardi Distinguished Service Award, and been a guest lecturer at Rutgers Camden-Law School on a variety of topics during her judicial career. She taught “Judicial Process” at Rutgers University- Camden for the fall 2013 semester. Judge Axelrad is currently volunteering in her sixth year as an adjunct professor at Rutgers Camden-Law School teaching Trial Advocacy.
Judge Axelrad was inducted in the Lakewood High School Alumni Hall of Fame in 2001. She previously volunteered as a cardio-pulmonary resuscitation instructor with the American Heart Association, Adult Leader and Merit Badge Counselor for Boy Scout Troop 147, and girls’ soccer coach. She has been a longstanding participant with the Literacy Volunteers of America as an instructor of English as a Second Language.