By Jeffery Smith firstname.lastname@example.org
BATH - Attorney Shawn M. Sauro will likely be the next Steuben County Public Defender.
The Steuben County Public Safety and Correction Committee unanimously approved Monday morning County Manager Jack Wheeler’s appointment of Sauro to the position. Sauro, 43, of Campbell, has served as a county assistant district attorney.
“He has been with the office for a little more than a year,” Wheeler told the PS&C Committee prior to the vote. “He is a qualified and confident attorney. I think he will do an excellent job.”
Sauro worked heavily for the past year and a half with former Steuben County District Attorney Phil Roche, who now serves as Steuben County and Family Court Judge.
“When I came to the public defender’s office, it was with the hope that I might be able to take the position if (Roche) decided to move into a county court position,” Sauro said. “So I was paying close attention to what Phil did.”
Wheeler said when the position was open and available the county received just one application for the post.
“I’m glad it’s the application that we were hoping for,” Wheeler said. “I did interview (Sauro) and he is the individual that Roche for the past year had been training. Not necessarily grooming, but just giving needed experience.”
Sauro said he will be happy if he can be a quarter of the success Roche has been at the public defender job.
“Phil has really been a titan when it came to his ability to work with the state and funding for things we are doing and keeping the system running,” Sauro said. “That’s really the name of the game here.”
Sauro will be officially appointed to the position at the 10 a.m. Jan. 22, Steuben County Legislator’s meeting. He will be paid $92,000 annually as public defender.