HARRISBURG (Oct. 1, 2022) – Pennsylvania Bar Association President Jay N. Silberblatt has issued the following statement on the passing of Chief Justice Max Baer:
“The passing of Chief Justice Baer brings a wave of tremendous sadness to those who had the privilege of working with him and to those who knew him for a well-earned reputation of fairness, kindness and caring.
“Chief Justice Baer led by example. He focused on improving the operations of Pennsylvania’s appellate courts, listening intently to members of the bar and acting with purpose to improve the public’s and legal professional’s interactions with the court.
“Chief Justice Baer was selfless, investing his efforts in making Pennsylvania courts better for all of us. He often shied away from the spotlight, instead focusing on the successes of his colleagues.
“On behalf of the PBA, condolences to Chief Justice Baer’s family, his judicial colleagues and to all who had the privilege of knowing him.”
Chief Justice Baer was first elected to the Supreme Court in 2003 and was sworn in as its chief justice in 2021. He was set to retire at the end of this year, after reaching the mandatory retirement age of 75.
A Pittsburgh native, the chief justice graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 1971 and from the Duquesne University School of Law in 1975. He served as deputy attorney general for Pennsylvania from 1975 to 1980. He was in private practice for nine years.
Chief Justice Baer was elected as a judge to the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas in 1989. He spent the majority of his time in the court’s family division, earning recognition at both the state and nation levels for juvenile court reforms.