Politics & Government

District judge (49-2-01)

This seat has jurisdiction in the townships of College, Ferguson, Halfmoon and Patton.

Job description: The magisterial district courts are the grass roots of Pennsylvania’s court system. The courts handle landlord-tenant and trespass actions and fines and penalties by government agencies. Magisterial district judges preside over preliminary arraignments and hearings in criminal cases, deciding whether there's enough evidence to hand the case up to the common pleas court. They issue arrest warrants and accept guilty pleas to first-offense driving under the influence charges. They are not required to be lawyers.

Term: Four years

Salary: $76,000

Lynn Herman

Party: cross-filed on Republican and Democratic ballots

Address: Patton Township

E-mail address: lherman77@comcast. net

Web site: www.votelynnherman.com

Birth date: Oct. 30, 1956

Education: B.A., political science and history (magna cum laude); masters degree, public administration

Occupation: former state representative

Qualifications: state representative for 24 years; worked to enact numerous laws to combat crime, enhance civil justice and protect law-enforcement officials and law-abiding citizens; Common Cause Champion of Good Government Award

Answer to question: I will serve as a full-time magisterial district judge and have no outside interests; implement effective programs that address youthful offenders through counseling, alcohol intervention, education and community service; combat the escalating incidence of drugs and alcohol by forming a citizens advisory group of community leaders to guide high school and university students and juveniles toward being law-abiding citizens; and make judicial decisions that are in the best interests of our neighborhoods, families and taxpayers.

Craig Q. Rose

Party: crossfiled on Republican and Democratic ballots

Address: Ferguson Township

E-mail address: craigqr@ yahoo.com

Web site: www.craigqrose.com

Birth date: April 3, 1968

Education: 1990, Anderson University, B.A.; 1994, Boston University School of Law, J.D.

Occupation: composition instructor, Penn State

Qualifications: case manager, Covenant House homeless shelter; legal intern, Federal District Judge Telesca, Massachusetts Department of Public Welfare; student prosecutor, Boston University Criminal Clinic; teacher, Jefferson High School, Denver; vice chairman, Ferguson Township Zoning Hearing Board

Answer to questions: First, I will work to expand alternative sentencing options, especially for youthful offenders. I would make use of my experience with troubled young adults to match youthful offenders to an appropriate sentence, helping them realize the consequences of their actions and lessen chances of recidivism. Second, I will work to reintroduce trained mediators to the court. When mediation succeeds, everybody wins: court costs and legal fees are saved, and both parties have an acceptable agreement.

Drew Clemson

Party: crossfiled on Republican and Democratic ballots

Address: Ferguson Township

E-mail address: wendyj41@ comcast.net

Web site: www.drew4districtjudge.com

Birth date: April 8, 1958

Education: University of Cincinnati, M.S.; FBI National Academy, 1996; Pennsylvania State Police Academy, 1982

Occupation: Chief of Police

Qualifications: 25 years of criminal justice experience; former Ferguson Township police lieutenant; police administrator for the past nine years; Leadership Centre County program graduate, 1995; 20 years as a counselor with CCLE Camp Cadet program

Answer to question: I believe this position can have a positive influence on controlling crime, particularly with respect to recidivism rates among youthful offenders. My main goals as district judge will be to: play an active role in prevention efforts aimed toward controlling underage drinking; explore alternative justice initiatives that have proven affective in preventing crime; and be accessible and available to the police and the community members who require the services of this public office.

Robert Stewart

Party: crossfiled on Republican and Democratic ballots

Address: Patton Township

E-mail address: robertwstewart@hotmail.com

Web site: www.voterobertstewart.com

Birth date: Oct. 20, 1964

Education: 1982, SCAHS; HACC-1985-86; magisterial district judge certified by Supreme Court of Pennsylvania-2005, recertified 2006; magisterial district judge continuing education 2005-07.

Occupation: commercial-property owner/manager since 1987.

Qualifications: Pennsylvania state constable; certified by supreme court to serve as a magisterial district judge; 400 hours of working with County MDJs, 2005-07.

Answer to question: Serve as a full time magisterial district judge and perform the duties of the office impartially and diligently. Partner with our schools, businesses, parents, law enforcement and youth to prevent drug and alcohol abuse among our youth. Establish a domestic violence awareness program in the work place. Inform our seniors how to best protect themselves from identity theft. Establish a mentor program similar to The Second Mile’s, promoting self-confidence, academic, physical and personal success.

Leslie Dutchcot

Party: crossfiled on Republican and Democratic ballots

Address: Patton Township

E-mail address: ldutchcot@dutchcotfordistrictjudge.com

Web site: www.dutchcotfor districtjudge.com

Birth date: Jan. 27, 1974

Education: 2001 Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association Prosecutor Course; 2000, Duquesne University Law School; 1996, University of Pittsburgh, B.A.Occupation: lawyer

Qualifications: The only candidate with criminal and civil courtroom experience as an attorney at Goodall & Yurchak P.C. and as a former prosecutor. 2005 Jaycees Lawyer of the Year; 2006 Everyday Leader Award, Pennsylvania Bar Association.

Answer to question: I intend to use my courtroom experience and legal knowledge gained as a prosecutor and attorney in private practice to make sound decisions based on the law, ensuring that all who enter my courtroom are treated professionally, with integrity and respect. I will be responsive and available to our local police departments. I will support their education programs and crime-prevention efforts. I will work to prevent substance abuse and domestic violence through education.