CLARION – Clarion County Chief Public Defender Erich Spessard has announced his candidacy for Clarion County Judge of Common Pleas.
In a prepared news release, Spessard said:
“To my neighbors, friends, and all the residents of Clarion County I have yet to meet, my name is Erich Spessard, and I formally announce my candidacy for judge on the Court of Common Pleas of Clarion County.
“A judge must represent the steadfast values and principles of the community. It is not a position to be taken lightly. I greatly admire Judge James Arner and I truly believe he is the epitome of an impartial arbiter who consistently acts as the conscience of our county. I sincerely hope to continue the tradition of Judge Arner and those that served before him.
“I dedicated nearly all my legal career to the betterment of Clarion County. I have served with distinction as Chief Public Defender since 2013, providing the best constitutionally-required representation possible for defendants. I have personally managed over 1,000 criminal cases without the assistance of investigators, detectives, or associates. I am privileged to serve on the Criminal Justice Advisory Board, the Drug and Alcohol Treatment Court team, and the Behavioral Health Court team to improve the judicial system for the entire county.
“Public defender, much like judge, demands an unflinching work ethic to keep up with the large caseload and to ensure exceptional quality work. It demands integrity — doing what is right even when it is not easy or popular. It demands leadership — making tough choices and setting an example for what is just. It demands compassion — viewing everyone with fairness and honesty, no matter who they are or where they came from. All of these qualities are part of my character — the core of who I am.
“I am dedicated to Clarion County. It is my home. The son of a veteran, I moved around quite a bit before I chose to attend Clarion University. After William and Mary Law School and working at the Allegheny County Public Defender’s office, I chose Clarion as the place I wanted to work and plant my roots.
“I have lived here for nearly a decade, and I owe all of my happiness to this amazing community. My wife Miranda and I live in Clarion with our dogs Storm and Nebula. Our first child is on the way and we look forward to raising our family here. I spend my spare time giving back through the United Way, the ARC, the Rotary Club of Clarion County, and the Clarion Hospital Health Services Board. Miranda is involved in numerous organizations including the Clarion Area Young Professionals and Friends of the Clarion Library.
“The best judges exhibit integrity, leadership, compassion, and love of community. I aspire to bring these qualities to the bench and to continue the tradition of outstanding judicial leadership in Clarion County. I am ready to work for everyone in Clarion County as your next judge of the Court of Common Pleas. For more about my campaign, visit www.erichspessard.com.”