District justice preview - Sheeley

May 13, 2003

Editor's note: 10 candidates are running in the May 20 primary for the new District 7 District Justice seat in Franklin County, Pa. The top two vote-getters in the Republican and Democratic primaries will advance to the general election Nov. 4. District 7 serves residents of Guilford and Quincy townships and the Borough of Mont Alto. Candidates provided the following information to The Herald-Mail.

Mary Lou Sheeley

Age: 51

Address: 5132 Wayne Road, Chambersburg, Pa.

Party: Republican

Employment: She works in the finance department at Quebecor World Inc. in Fairfield, Pa.

What are your qualifications?

"I earned a Pennsylvania paralegal certificate and an associate degree in business administration from Penn State Mont Alto. My paralegal certification required instruction in the various levels of law that are essential to perform the diverse duties of a district justice. This diversity would enable me to process criminal and civil cases competently and conscientiously. My business degree, teamed with five years management experience in a corporate finance department, has prepared me for the management of a district justice office."


What is the role of a district justice?

"The district justice is the first level in the state judicial system and is typically the court that people access when entering this system for any reason. Therefore, it is the district justice's responsibility - and most important role - to represent our court system professionally, ethically and efficiently; and without bias. Accordingly, the district justice protects the constitutional rights of all accused, but considers the same rights of the citizens affected by any acts against society."

Why are you seeking this position?

"As a lifelong resident of Magisterial District 7, I owe this community much. It has taught me, by example, the value of hard work, honesty and dedication to family and community. Using these same values, I would serve the people of my community as their district justice ethically, as a way of continuing these longstanding rural traditions. Also, law and business were my educational preferences and serving my community in this position would allow me to utilize both of these courses of study simultaneously."

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