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President Obama Nominates Three Penn Staters For Federal Bench

Three Penn Staters will take their seats as federal judges, pending approval from the United States Senate. President Barack Obama tapped Penn State graduates U.S. Magistrate Judge Susan Baxter, Butler County Common Pleas Judge Marilyn Horan, and Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge Robert Colville to fill the three vacancies on the federal benches in Pittsburgh and Erie.

All three Penn Staters were recommended to the president by Pennsylvania’s two United States Senators last week.

“The nominees announced today by President Obama are highly skilled legal professionals who will bring fairness and integrity to their work on the federal bench,” Sen. Bob Casey said in a release.

“These nominees possess a wealth of legal experience from their work in both the public and private sectors,” Sen. Pat Toomey said. “I am confident that they have the acumen, integrity, and respect for the limited role of the judiciary that they need to excel as federal judges.”

Baxter graduated from Penn State in 1978. She has her law degree from Temple and has served as United States Magistrate Judge in the Western District of Pennsylvania since 1995. Horan graduated from Penn State in 1976 magna cum laude. She has her law degree from Pitt and has been a judge on the Court of Common Pleas for Butler County since 1996. Colville graduated from Penn State in 1989. He has his law degree from Duquesne and has served as a judge on the Court of Common Pleas for Allegheny County since 2000.

With 874 Article III (federally appointed) judges across the United States, there’s no telling how many other Penn Staters serve in these elite roles. However, taking three of three Pennsylvania openings this appointment cycle isn’t too shabby for Alma Mater.

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About the Author

Kevin Horne

Kevin Horne was the editor of Onward State from 2012-2014 and currently holds the position of Managing Editor Emeritus, which is a fake title he made up. He graduated from Penn State with degrees journalism and political science in 2014 and is currently seeking his J.D. at the Penn State Dickinson School of Law. A third generation Penn Stater from Williamsport, Pa., Kevin is also the president of the graduate student government. Email: [email protected]


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