Bucks Writs - Fall 2021 - 15

as a CYS social worker for two years, and then planned on
getting a Master's in Education at Duquesne, to eventually
work counseling children . But she had in the back of her
mind that she wanted to be a child advocate, to determine
the best course for an abused or neglected child; thus,
she needed to go to law school . For a law degree to be
attainable, she commuted from the family's home to class
each day and held down two part-time jobs to make her
tuition at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law .
Hard work and family continue to be front and center in
her life . Her mom and dad helped her during her campaign
by advocating for her platform and by providing wonderful
childcare for the Judge's now nine-year-old daughter, Cydney .
Campaigning alongside her mother came
with valuable lessons. The take away
was that if you work hard for something
worthwhile - as she did - then the
victory when you obtain that something
will be all the sweeter.
learn process and procedures; courtroom decorum, if you
will . She carefully explains the " hows " and the " whys "
to both parties, instructing them that they must take
turns in speaking, maintain a respectful tone and volume,
avoid interruptions, and then, at the end of the case, each
will have a chance to summarize their points . While she
knows firsthand how frustrating it is to be unable to get
on a Judge's docket, sometimes a telephone call between
opposing counsel can resolve things, which Judge Liller does
as frequently as possible .
Before November 2019, Judge Liller was working full time,
campaigning full time and parenting full time . At the height
of the pandemic, she was working full time and parenting,
inside her courtroom . The same childcare crisis that hit
so many others during 2020 affected her family as her
daughter, Cydney's, school was virtual . Daycare and after
care were closed and her family is in Pittsburgh . Cydney,
wearing her mask, and with an iPad and a head set, went
to the courtroom everyday with her mom, and completed
her lessons until restrictions were lifted . With this new year,
Cydney is back to her routine . The Judge drives her to school,
then begins her own day in the courtroom .
The path to the 6th floor of our Justice Center started out
for the Judge from her hometown of Pittsburgh, where she
had set her sights on getting an MSW degree . In fact, after
graduation from the University of Pittsburgh, she worked
15
I recalled the print ads showing Cydney as her mom's
mainstay in the run up to the election . I asked the Judge
how the stress of a campaign came to bear on Cydney . Was
it hard for her, coming to events, being with " grown-ups "
much of the time, being away from her mom? It was at
times, Judge Liller said, but campaigning alongside her
mother came with valuable lessons . The take away was that
if you work hard for something worthwhile - as she did -
then the victory when you obtain that something will be all
the sweeter . Cydney has a wonderful role model in her mom .
And how is her pace of work now different from private
practice, aside from being the trier of fact, rather than
counsel? She was able to take her trusted assistant, Stacey,
with her, but their calendar is not in her control as it was
when she was a partner at her firm . Conferences and
hearings are scheduled from 8:30 a .m . until 4:30 p .m .
to keep pace with the County's burgeoning domestic
proceedings . Judge Liller, like attorney Liller, takes work home
with her . Just not as often now, because the courtroom
doesn't lend itself to it . She will review custody evaluations
and work on drafting opinions on her laptop after hours .
When she has occasion to seek advice on procedures and
protocol she usually goes to Judge Baldi for his thoughts .
The two Judges worked together years prior in private
practice in New Hope and have a long-standing respectful
relationship . For family court consultations, she defers to
Judge McMaster, who is the Administrative Judge for Family
Court . I also gather that even our judiciary partakes of a
" brown bag " lunch on occasion, to exchange " war " stories,
I am sure, but also ideas, and to provide mentoring to the
incoming judiciary .
For a community-minded, accomplished attorney whose
practice was informed by experience first in social work, and
later as a mother and as an advocate for children, this robe
seems like a perfect fit . 
FALL 2021

Bucks Writs - Fall 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Bucks Writs - Fall 2021

Bucks Writs - Fall 2021 - 1
Bucks Writs - Fall 2021 - 2
Bucks Writs - Fall 2021 - 3
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https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Fall2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Summer2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Spring2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Fall2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Summer2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/BucksWritsSpring2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Winter2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Fall2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Summer2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Spring2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Winter2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Fall2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Summer2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Spring2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Winter2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Fall2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Summer2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/BucksWrits/Spring2017
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com