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2021 General Voter Guide

2021 General Election – Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Voter Registration Deadline
October 18, 2021

Vote by Mail Request Deadline
October 26, 2021

General Election
November 2, 2021

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2021 General Election Candidates

Maria McLaughlin

PA Supreme Court

Judge Maria McLaughlin is a Judge on the Pennsylvania Superior Court who serves as a liaison between the Pennsylvania Bar Association and the Superior Court. She previously served as a Judge on the Philadelphia Court of Committee Pleas, serving on the Family Division. Before that, Judge McLaughlin was an Assistant District Attorney in Philadelphia and later a Chief of the Child Support Enforcement Unit. She has also served as an instructor and/or guest speaker on a variety of topics for the Pennsylvania Bar Association, Pennsylvania Bar Institute, local bar associations around Pennsylvania, primary, middle and high schools, universities, and law schools throughout the Commonwealth. She is a native of the Overbrook section of West Philadelphia who received her undergraduate degree from Penn State University and her law degree from Delaware Law School-Widener University. Judge McLaughlin is rated as Highly Recommended by the Pennsylvania Bar Association.

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Timika Lane

Superior Court

Judge Timika R. Lane is Judge on the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas who serves with the Major Trials program in the Criminal Division, in which she is the sole judge handling human trafficking cases. She previously served as Chief Legal Counsel for State Senator Anthony H. Williams and as the Democratic Executive Director for the Pennsylvania State Senate State Government Committee. Judge Lane was a middle-school social studies teacher before pursuing her legal career, which she started as law clerk during law school before becoming a Certified Child Advocate Attorney, and later a major trial attorney for the Defender Association of Philadelphia. She is a native of West Philadelphia who received her undergraduate degree from Howard University and her law degree from Rutgers-Camden School of Law. Judge Lane is rated as Recommended by the Pennsylvania Bar Association.

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Lori Dumas

Commonwealth Court

Judge Lori A. Dumas is a Common Pleas Court Judge in Philadelphia. She is currently assigned to the Civil Division, and has served in the Family Court-Juvenile Division. During her time in the Family Court, she fought for fair and equal justice for Philadelphia’s most vulnerable children and families. Judge Dumas guided the City of Philadelphia in its creation of the First Judicial District’s Juvenile Human Trafficking Court, which provided services to youth that had been victims of commercial exploitation. She also served in the Criminal Division, and in all divisions, has presided over jury and non-jury trials. Judge Dumas also serves as the local Chair of a national anti-violence program which uses literacy as a therapeutic tool to assist youth who have been traumatized by violence. She is a Philadelphia native who received her undergraduate degree from Duke University and her law degree from North Carolina Central University School of Law. Judge Dumas is rated as Recommended by the Pennsylvania Bar Association.

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David Spurgeon

Commonwealth Court

Judge David Lee Spurgeon is a Judge on the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas as well as an adjunct professor at Duquesne University School of Law. He serves on the Family Division of the Allegheny Court and is recognized as a national expert on domestic violence and has been named a Judicial Fellow by the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges. Judge Spurgeon previously served in the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office, where he assisted in the creation of Veterans’ Court, supervised the attorneys assigned to Mental Health Court, and served as the County Coordinator for the STOP grant under the Violence Against Women Act and co-chair of the DV Task Force. Judge Spurgeon is rated as Highly Recommended by the Pennsylvania Bar Association.

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Chris Hess

Lancaster County Controller

Chris Hess is the first Democratic candidate for County Controller since 2001. He has served as a Restaurant Manager, Bartender, and Beverage Director in the service industry. His responsibilities included reducing waste, increasing efficiency to save on labor costs, managing inventory, being held accountable for financials related to the beverage program, and managing personnel. Mr. Hess is experienced in reading financial statements; working within a budget; controlling cost; being in a position of leadership; and fostering relationships with colleagues, to create a respectful, professional, and enjoyable work environment. He believes that elected leaders need to put the people they represent first, and not private interests. Politicians should be transparent and honest, that they should mean what they say. Mr. Hess plans to use the power of the office of Controller to keep more of our hard-earned tax dollars right here in Lancaster County by fighting for policies that invest County dollars locally. Mr. Hess is a lifelong resident of Lancaster County who cares about the people who live in the county, and wants to give back by serving as Lancaster County Controller.

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Dominic Castaldi

Lancaster County Recorder of Deeds

Dominic Castaldi is a member of the Mount Joy Borough Council, elected in 2019. He was recently employed in public health with Penn Medicine LGH Contract Tracing Team. He had worked for over 20 years as a Bureau of Labor Statistics Economist, and has also held local part-time employment. Mr. Castaldi serves as a Basketball Official with the PIAA District III Lancaster/Lebanon League. He has also served on various boards including Chamber of Commerce and Main Street organizations. Mr. Castaldi received his BA in Economics with a Minor in Public Administration from West Chester University and his Masters Course in Healthcare Economics from Penn State University. His campaign is focused on giving the voters a choice, complimenting other candidates, and representing the Democratic Party. Mr. Castaldi has the experience, education, demeanor and desire to help people.

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Michelle Batt

Lancaster County Clerk of Court of Common Pleas

Michelle Batt is Co-Founder, President, and Treasurer for the Lancaster Bail Fund, a local nonprofit to create a more just, equitable, and humane pretrial system. She previously served as a Senior Assistant Public Defender for the Lancaster County Public Defender, where as a capital certified trial attorney specializing in complex felony litigation, she served the public by providing competent and effective indigent defense at every critical stage of prosecution in addition to overseeing one of four trial teams and writing her own appeals. She also served as an Assistant Public Defender for the Monroe County Public Defender, and before that, as a law clerk for the Hon. Margherita Patti-Worthington, PJ, for the Court of Common Pleas, 43rd Judicial District, Stroudsburg, PA. Ms. Batt received her undergraduate degree from Penn State University and her law degree from Pennsylvania State University, The Dickinson School of Law. She is running for Clerk of Court of Common Pleas because she has seen the devastating effects of delays and errors in processing paperwork have on individuals, particularly if it means they are incarcerated on warrants not vacated in a timely matter, or remain incarcerated when they are supposed to be released. Appeals have also been delayed or denied due to delays and errors. All these also result in higher costs for taxpayers. Ms. Batt will use her decade of experience in criminal law and public service to build back a stronger Office for the Clerk of Court which will be better able to effectively serve the needs of the public and the courts.

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