Bucks Writs - Fall 2019 - 14


Meet Judge
Wallace H. (Skip) Bateman
By Chris Serpico

Earlier this year, the judges of the Bucks County's Court
of Common Pleas elected Wallace (Skip) Bateman to be
President Judge, succeeding Judge Jeffrey Finley. As President
Judge for the next five years, Judge Bateman will oversee
the (soon to be) fifteen judges on the CP Court, the court's
Senior Judges, and the county's eighteen Magisterial
District Court judges.
He also has responsibility for supervising all court-related
departments, such as Adult Probation and Parole; Court
Administration; the Board of Managers of Juvenile Court,
and he sits on the Prison Board. He even makes the final call
on whether to declare a snow day!
Is he up to the task? Anyone who knows him will agree that
he most certainly is. Having served on the bench for the past
ten years, and assuming the voters of Bucks County decide
to retain him, he brings a wealth of practical experience
to the position.
A graduate of LaSalle University and Widener University's
School of Law, he started his career in the Bucks County
District Attorney's Office, where he worked for DA's Mike
Kane and Alan Rubenstein. During his tenure in that office
from 1982 to 1987, he was a colleague of several judges
who currently sit with him on the Bucks County bench,
including Judges Finley, McHugh, Fritsch, Rubenstein,
Boylan, and Gibbons.

in a prompt and efficacious manner, as a practicing attorney
for over two decades, he understands the competing
demands that many lawyers have to juggle. To that end, he
feels "it's important to respect lawyers, but also make certain
that unnecessary delays will not be tolerated."

After leaving the DA's Office, he took a position with the
Perkasie law firm of Grim, Biehn, and Thatcher, where he
labored for 21 years from 1987 to 2008, when he was
nominated and appointed to fill an open seat on the County
Court. Subsequently, he was elected to a ten-year term
in November of 2009. (One of his partners at the Grim
firm, Jeff Trauger, was also elected to the Bucks County
bench in 2017).

He's quick to credit his fellow judges and others for making
the court more efficient, which makes his job a little bit
easier. He cites, for example, the "remarkable" job Judge
Baldi has done in removing stale cases from the civil docket,
and instituting procedures to make the civil list move more
rapidly without impeding the rights of litigants and their
attorneys. Judge Boylan deserves recognition for the work
she's done with Specialty Courts, such as Drug Court; the
Youthful Offender Program; and the District Court Drug
Diversion Program. He also credits Deputy District Attorney
Bob James for his work in creating the Veteran's Court, which
now has been expanded to allow for greater involvement
and supervision by Adult Probation and Parole.

When I asked him about his priorities for the coming year, he
was very clear that he's primarily concerned with "making
sure people have access to the courts." Although he's
pleased that Bucks County has been able to continue to
process cases in an efficient and orderly manner, consistent
with it's state-wide reputation as a leader in delivering justice



Bucks Writs - Fall 2019

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Bucks Writs - Fall 2019 - 1
Bucks Writs - Fall 2019 - 2
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