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Judges face off for seat on Court of Appeals

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Pedro Oliveira Jr.
March 29, 2010

Linda M. Van De Water and Paul F. Reilly, the two Waukesha County judges competing for a seat on the 2nd District Court of Appeals, said the contest is about qualifications, experience and reputation.


The 2nd District Court of Appeals includes Walworth and 11 other counties.


"I've handled all the types of matters that would come before the court of appeals," Reilly said.


The 48-year-old judge said he decided to run because he enjoys the intellectually challenging work of the appeals court.


"The work is fascinating," Reilly said.


Reilly is a member of the Wisconsin judicial faculty and has been appointed to serve on the Judicial Conference Planning Committee and Civil Law Conference Planning Committee. He has also been elected to the Civil Jury Instruction Committee.


Van De Water, 47, said the appeals court needs judges who can uphold the Constitution and interpret the law without bias, holding dangerous criminals accountable and imposing tough, yet fair and equitable sentences.


"I've got a reputation as being a tough judge, tough sentencer," she said. "Cases need to be resolved fairly and quickly with impartiality.


"You need to save the taxpayers time and money, without looking for loopholes or because you don't agree with the sentence."


Van De Water has been a judge since 2003. She was an assistant district attorney in Waukesha County for 10 years, and has worked as an attorney for the Department of Regulation and Licensing. She ran as the Republican candidate for state attorney general in 1998, losing to Gov. Jim Doyle.


The 2nd District Court of Appeals reviews cases from the circuit courts to determine if the law was correctly applied. The appeals court sits between the circuit court and the Wisconsin Supreme Court, the state's highest court.


Bios

Linda M. Van De Water


Age: 47


Job: Waukesha County judge


Education: Bachelor's degree from University of Iowa in 1985 and law degree from Marquette University Law School in 1988.


Community involvement: Supreme Court appointee to Juvenile Jury Instructions Committee; Supreme Court appointee to Policy, Planning and Advisory Committee; member of Wisconsin Trial Judges Association; and member of National Association of Women Judges.


***


Paul Reilly


Age: 48


Job: Waukesha County judge


Education: Bachelor's degree in business administration from UW-Madison in 1984 and law degree from UW Law School in 1987.


Community involvement: Civil Jury Instruction Committee at Wisconsin Supreme Court Office of Judicial Education; Wisconsin judicial faculty; judicial volunteer at Wisconsin Lawyers Assistance Program.



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