Judge of the Superior Court
Maria Battista has more than 15 years of legal experience in civil, criminal, and administrative law and is a former Assistant District Attorney. As a Commonwealth attorney, Battista was counsel in the Departments of Health and State. For three years, Battista was a hearing examiner where she presided over hundreds of cases, including for the Department of Corrections.
Harry F. Smail, Jr.
Judge Harry F. Smail, Jr has been a Judge of the Court of Common Pleas in Westmoreland County for 8 ½ years. He was appointed by Governor Tom Corbett to serve on the bench in 2014 and unanimously confirmed by the State Senate. In 2015 Judge Smail won both parties’ nominations to a full term on the Westmoreland County Court of Common Pleas. During his time on the bench, Judge Smail served initially in Family Court. For the last 6 years, Judge Smail has administered a complex civil litigation docket of a variety of nuanced legal issues related to government and municipal issues, elections, energy and land use and constitutional challenges.
Judge of the Superior Court
udge Dugan has served 15 years on the Municipal Bench, since being appointed in 2007 by Governor Ed Rendel. His meritorious service to the court earned the respect of his peers and Dugan was elected President Judge in 2019. As one of the country’s busiest courts, Philadelphia Municipal Court has thrived under Judge Dugan’s tenure and has led the nation in diversion, innovation, and reform initiatives. Viewed as a fair and experienced arbiter of justice, Judge Dugan was selected by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to be one of nine judges appointed to the newly instituted Judicial Ethics Advisory Board.
Timika Lane (WINNER)
Judge Timika Lane was elected to the Court of the Common Pleas in 2013 after a distinguished career as a teacher and then a lawyer. She was first assigned to the Major Trials program in the Criminal Division. There Judge Lane supervised human trafficking cases. In addition, she presided over serious felony criminal matters including but not limited to domestic/family violence, sexual assault, attempted murder, arson, robbery, and burglary. She also handled Investigative Grand Jury matters and supervised re-entry programs. Judge Lane is now assigned to the Complex Litigation jury trial program in the Civil Division.
Raised in Pittsburgh, Jill knew from a young age that she wanted to be an advocate for the underserved. While pursuing her undergraduate degree in criminal justice from The George Washington University, she served as a counselor at a residential facility for adjudicated delinquent girls and later as an assistant forensic interviewer at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh’s Child Advocacy Center. After graduating with honors, she served as an AmeriCorps Fellow working with adolescents on probation.