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Newsmaker: Judge Joy Flowers Conti

| Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010

Judge Joy Flowers Conti

Age: 61

Residence: Pine

Family: husband, Anthony Conti; three sons

Background: Conti was born in McKean County and grew up on Army bases around the world, graduating from high school in Germany. She earned a bachelor's degree and a law degree from Duquesne University. Conti was the editor in chief of the Duquesne Law Review and graduated summa cum laude from the law school. Before she was appointed as a federal judge in 2002, she was a law clerk for a state Supreme Court justice, a tenured professor of the Duquesne Law School and a private attorney who focused on bankruptcy, health care and corporate law.

Noteworthy: U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts appointed Conti as chair of the Judicial Conference Committee on the Administration of the Bankruptcy System. The Judicial Conference oversees the administration of the federal court system, and the bankruptcy committee specifically oversees the bankruptcy courts. Conti said the challenge facing the committee is a proposal to add 13 bankruptcy judge positions and convert 22 temporary bankruptcy judgeships to permanent positions. The economic recession has increased the caseload on the bankruptcy courts, and more than half of the current bankruptcy judges will become eligible to retire in the next five years, she said. The bankruptcy courts play a vital role in helping people and companies in some of their worst moments, Conti said.

Quote: "It is really important to our local economy, so it's very interesting work."

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