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Supreme Court appoints Panella to the Court of Judicial Discipline
September 24, 2013
HARRISBURG — The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has announced the appointment of Superior Court Judge Jack A. Panella to the Court of Judicial Discipline.

Judge Panella, who has served on the Superior Court since 2004, was appointed to a four-year term on the Court of Judicial Discipline. Judge Panella previously served on the Court of Judicial Discipline from 1997 to 2001, including one year as its president judge. He then was appointed by the Supreme Court to the Judicial Conduct Board and later was elected board chair.

He is the only judge to have served as both president judge of the Court of Judicial Discipline, and chair of the Judicial Conduct Board. Judge Panella also is the only jurist to serve two terms on the Court of Judicial Discipline.

Judge Panella’s election to Superior Court followed 12 years as a trial judge in Northampton County.

“Jack has served the people of Northampton County and the state of Pennsylvania well for several years and will be an outstanding addition to the Court of Judicial Discipline,” Chief Justice of Pennsylvania Ronald D. Castille said. “He is a proven leader with outstanding credentials to serve in Pennsylvania’s judiciary disciplinary oversight system.”

The Court of Judicial Discipline and the Judicial Conduct Board were created by constitutional amendment in 1993 as independent state agencies. The Conduct Board receives and investigates complaints of misconduct concerning Pennsylvania’s jurists. If the board determines that probable cause exists, it then files formal charges against a jurist with the Court of Judicial Discipline.

The court has authority to impose sanctions ranging from reprimand to removal from office if the formal charges are sustained.  It consists of eight members, four of whom are appointed by the Supreme Court and four of whom are appointed by the governor.  Members serve four-year terms.

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