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April 05, 2019

Philadelphia Bar Association Launches ElectQualifiedJudges.com, Online Voter Education Tool

Releases First Wave of Judicial Candidate Ratings for May Primary

The Philadelphia Bar Association's Commission on Judicial Selection and Retention launched ElectQualifiedJudges.com, an online judicial candidate tool to help voters make an informed decision about judicial elections during the upcoming May 21st Pennsylvania primary election.

Along with the launch of the online judicial candidate tool, the Commission also released its first batch of judicial candidate ratings ahead of the May 21st Pennsylvania primary election. Candidates who have been rated to date include those running for judge of the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas and Philadelphia Municipal Court.

Two candidates for Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas judicial candidates – Anthony Kyriakakis and Tiffany Palmer – received “Highly Recommended” ratings.

The 35-member Commission is independent and non-partisan, and its ratings are based upon extensive study and thorough investigation by its own 120-member investigative division. The members of the Commission include community leaders, the president judges of the Court of Common Pleas and Municipal Court, representatives from the offices of the public defender, district attorney and city solicitor, and representatives from the many diverse legal groups and sections of the Association.

“The Commission’s ratings of judicial candidates are the only non-partisan source for voters in Philadelphia, and its investigations are based on a wide range of objective qualifications for judicial service,” said Philadelphia Bar Association Chancellor Rochelle M. Fedullo. “I strongly encourage Philadelphians to learn more about the entire process, and how we came to rate Anthony Kyriakakis and Tiffany Palmer as highly recommended.”

Candidates rated “Highly Recommended” and "Recommended" satisfied a cumulative review of criteria including qualifications such as legal ability, experience, integrity, temperament, community involvement and judgment. Complete information can be found at ElectQualifiedJudges.com.

“Judicial elections are vitally important to the lives of all Philadelphians, because those elected will be deciding issues of civil, criminal and family law, on matters ranging from imprisonment to financial disputes to child custody,” said Commission Chair Teresa Ficken Sachs. “The Commission invests thousands of hours to thoroughly investigate, review and rate the candidates, demonstrating the Philadelphia Bar Association’s zealous commitment to access to justice.”

The Commission’s investigations are still in progress. More ratings will be given in the coming weeks leading up to the primary election. The first wave of judicial ratings released include:

COMMON PLEAS

Highly Recommended:

  • Anthony Kyriakakis
  • Tiffany Palmer

Recommended:

  • Wendi Barish
  • James Berardinelli
  • Francesca Iacovangelo
  • Kendra McCrae
  • Daniel Sulman
  • Betsy Wahl
  • Kay Yu

Not Recommended:

  • Terri Michelle Booker
  • Sherman Toppin
  • Gregory Weyer

MUNICIPAL COURT

Recommended:

  • David Conroy
  • Betsy Wahl
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