Bucks County Judge Wallace Bateman is the new president judge.
Bateman, 61, of Perkasie, was elected unanimously by his fellow county judges on Monday and assumed the new role right away. His term will last five years.
Bateman will oversee county court operations, assignments of the county’s 13 Common Pleas judges, county district judges, Adult and Juvenile Probation, Domestic Relations, security policies and procedures at the Justice Center, the Juvenile Detention Center, and approximately 500 employees of the court system. He will also be the liaison to the Office of Pennsylvania Courts and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and serve on the prison oversight board, juvenile detention center board, and salary board.
“It’s very humbling, and I’m honored to be selected by my colleagues,” said Bateman, whose nickname is “Skip.” “They are all dedicated and hardworking people that I respect very much, so it’s very much an honor to be chosen by them.”
County Judge Jeffrey Finley previously served as the president judge.
“I’ve known Skip since we served together in the district attorney’s office,” Finley said. “He has a wide range of experience, is even-tempered and open to suggestions, and has the respect of the bench and the Bucks County Bar.”
Bateman has served as a county assistant district attorney and deputy district attorney in the 1980s before working in private practice until he was elected to become a judge in 2008. He has also served as an adjunct faculty member at Bucks County Community College and as a facilitator in the MBA program at Holy Family University.
While Finley oversaw the opening of the new Justice Center in Doylestown Borough, Bateman will lead the courts as two new county judges are added by January 2020.
“We probably have, per capita, the fewest judges of any county in the Commonwealth. I think it’s fair to say that we judges hear more cases than most, so we are looking forward to having new people join us,” Bateman said.